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Temporal range: Turonian-Early Coniacian
~94–86 Ma
Reconstructed skeleton
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Clade: Dinosauria
Clade: Saurischia
Clade: Theropoda
Family: Alvarezsauridae
Genus: Patagonykus
Novas 1996
P. puertai
Binomial name
Patagonykus puertai
Novas 1996

Patagonykus (meaning "Patagonian claw") is a genus of theropod dinosaur from the Upper Cretaceous of Argentina. This alvarezsaur was discovered in exposures of the Portezuelo Formation (Turonian-Coniacian) of the Rio Neuquén Subgroup in the Neuquén Basin, Neuquen Province of Patagonia, Argentina. The holotype consists of an incomplete but well-preserved skeleton, lacking a skull, but including many vertebrae, the coracoids, a partial forelimb, pelvic girdle, and hindlimbs. Patagonykus has been classed with the Alvarezsauridae, a family which includes such taxa as the Mongolian Mononykus and the Argentinian Alvarezsaurus. Patagonykus is estimated to have been approximately two meters in length.


Further reading

  • F. E. Novas. 1994. Patagonykus puertai n. gen. et sp., and the phylogenetic relationships of the Alvarezsauridae (Theropoda, Maniraptora). VI Congreso Argentino de Paleontología y Bioestratigrafía, R. Cúneo (ed), Museo Paleontológico Egidio Feruglio, Trelew.
  • Novas, F. E. 1997. Anatomy of Patagonykus puertai (Theropoda, Avialae, Alvarezsauridae), from the Late Cretaceous of Patagonia. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 17(1); 137-166.
  • Novas, F. E. and Molnar, R. E. (eds.) 1996. Alvarezsauridae, Cretaceous basal birds from Patagonia and Mongolia. Proceedings of the Gondwanan Dinosaur Symposium, Brisbane. Memoirs of the Queensland Museum 39(3):iv + 489-731; 675-702.

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