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Temporal range: Early Jurassic
~202–176 Ma
Leyesaurus skull in lateral view.png
Skull of Leyesaurus marayensis in lateral view
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Clade: Dinosauria
Order: Saurischia
Suborder: Sauropodomorpha
Family: Massospondylidae
Genus: Leyesaurus
Apaldetti et al. 2011
L. marayensis
Binomial name
Leyesaurus marayensis
Apaldetti et al. 2011

Leyesaurus is an extinct genus of massospondylid sauropodomorph dinosaur known from the San Juan Province, northwestern Argentina.[1]


Silhouette reconstruction of the skeleton of L. marayensis
Skull of L. marayensis in dorsal view

Leyesaurus is known from the holotype PVSJ 706, a nearly complete skull with articulated mandible and some postcranial remains (vertebral column, scapular and pelvic girdles and hindlimb). The skull has a length of 18 centimeters, and Leyesaurus has been estimated to have been about 2.5 m (8.2 ft) in length. It was collected from the uppermost part of the Quebrada del Barro Formation of the Marayes-El Carrizal Basin, dating to the Lower Jurassic (based on the presence of a massospondylid like Leyesaurus within the formation). Leyesaurus was found near the locality Balde de Leyes, in the Caucete Department of San Juan Province. Within Massospondylidae, Leyesaurus was found to be most closely related to Adeopapposaurus.[1]


Leyesaurus was first named by Cecilia Apaldetti, Ricardo N. Martinez, Oscar A. Alcober and Diego Pol in 2011 and the type species is Leyesaurus marayensis. The generic name honors the Leyes family, inhabitants of the small town Balde de Leyes, who discovered the holotype and notified the paleontologists of the San Juan Museum, and saurus, Greek for "lizard". The specific name refers to the Marayes-El Carrizal Basin, where the holotype was discovered.[1]


  1. ^ a b c Cecilia Apaldetti, Ricardo N. Martinez, Oscar A. Alcober and Diego Pol (2011). Claessens, Leon (ed.). "A New Basal Sauropodomorph (Dinosauria: Saurischia) from Quebrada del Barro Formation (Marayes-El Carrizal Basin), Northwestern Argentina". PLoS ONE. 6 (11): e26964. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0026964. PMC 3212523. PMID 22096511.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
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