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Glossary TAN - TEM

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Tangvayosaurus (meaning "Tang Vay lizard") was a large, long-necked, quadrupedal, plant-eating dinosaur (an titanosaurid). This tank-like dinosaur was about 6 m long. Talarurus lived during the late Cretaceous Period, about 120 to 99 million years ago. Fossils have been found in Laos, Asia. Talarurus was named by paleontologists Allian, Taquet, Battail, Dejax, Richir, Veran, Limon-Duparcmeur, Vacant, Mateus, Sayarath, Khenthavong and Phouyavong in 1999; the type species is T. hoffeti. may be the same as Titanosaurus falloti.

(pronounced TAL-a-RU-rus) Talarurus (meaning "wicker [basket] tail") was a large, armored, quadrupedal, plant-eating dinosaur (an ankylosaurid). This tank-like dinosaur was about 6 m long. Talarurus lived during the middle Cretaceous Period, about 99 to 90 million years ago. Fossils have been found in Mongolia, Asia. Talarurus was named by Maleev in 1952; the type species is T. plicatospineus.

(pronounced TAN-ee-us) Tanius was a large, crestless Hadrosaurid from China. These heavily-built plant-eaters were duck-bills that had a bony protuberance between the eyes on their flat head. Tanius had a toothless beak and strong jaws with self-sharpening cheek teeth (for chewing tough plant material). It had four-fingered hands and could walk on 2 or 4 legs. Tanius dates from the late Cretaceous Period, about 88.5 to 65 million years ago. Tanius was named by Carl Wiman in 1929, after the "Tanka" people of southern China.

(pronounced TAN-ee-STRO-fee-us) Tanystropheus was a long-necked reptile (not a dinosaur) that dates from the middle Triassic period. It looked like a lizard with a ridiculously long neck. Its neck was 10 feet (3 m) long, longer than its body and tail put together. Some of the 10 neck vertebrae (neck bones) were over 1 foot (30 cm) wide. It had 4 legs, a tail, and was about 20 feet (6 m) long. This fish-eater had peg-like teeth. Tanystropheus may have spent a lot of time on the water, but it was neither well adapted for swimming nor walking. It may have lived on the shore and fished with its long neck and head! Fossils of Tanystropheus have been found in Europe and the Middle East. It may have been related to the Nothosaurs. Classification: Order Squamata (lizards and snakes).

This medium sized pterosaur was a carnivore who lived in the Early Cretaceous period. It lived on the edges of lakes and inland seas. It had a huge crest which was probably some sort of display structure to attract mates. Its wingspan was five meters, and its body length was one meter.

Taphonomy (which means 'laws of burial') is the science that studies the process of decay and fossilization. The Russian paleontologist Ivan A. Efremov coined the term taphonomy and founded the study of taphonomy in 1940.

(pronounced TAR-bow-SAWR-us) Tarbosaurus is an invalid name for Tyrannosaurus bataar or T. efremovi, Asian theropods smaller than Tyrannosaurus rex. T. bataar was about 30 to 40 feet (9 to 12 m) long and weighed 4 to 5 tons. T. efremovi was about 23 to 26 feet (7 to 8 m) long and weighed 2 to 3 tons. Both adult and juvenile skeletons have been found. It was named by Maleev in 1955.

(pronounced TAHR-key-ah) Tarchia (meaning "brainy one") was an armored, plant-eating dinosaur that dates from the late Cretaceous Period, about 78-69 million years ago. This ankylosaurid ankylosaur was about 18 feet (5.5 m) long and weighed roughly 10,000 pounds (4500 kg). It had spikes running along its sides and at the corners of its mouth. This lumbering quadruped had a large tail club and a large braincase. Seven fossils have been found in Mongolia. Tarchia was named by Maryanska in 1977. The type species is T. gigantea.

A tar pit is a pool of gooey asphalt. It is created when crude oil seeps up from deep inside the Earth through a crack (called a fissure) - millions of years of time and intense pressure convert ancient organisms, like plankton, into oil. The less dense elements of the crude oil evaporate, leaving asphalt (a very sticky mess). Water pools on the tar, attracting thirsty animals. As an animal gets stuck in the tar, it attracts predators, who also get stuck. The animals' bones, teeth, and other hard parts are well-preserved in this environment (but they turn brown from the asphalt). Tar pits are located around the world. A famous tar pit is the Rancho La Brea Tar Pits (in southern California, USA).

A tarsal is an ankle bone.

A taxon is category in the classification of living organisms. The taxa (the plural of taxon) in the Linnean system are kingdom, phylum, class, order, family, genus, and species.

Taxonomy is the science of classifying organisms into groups by structure, origin, common ancestor, etc.

(pronounced TEK-no-SAWR-us) Technosaurus (meaning "Tech {for Texas University} lizard") was a small, primitive ornithischian dinosaur. This plant-eater is poorly known; only a partial jaw bone (with many ridged teeth) was found. It may have been about 4 ft (1.2 m) long, weighing about 25 pounds (11 kg). It lived during the late Triassic Period, about 231 to 225 million years ago in what is now Texas, USA. It may have been hunted by Coelophysis and the large carnivorous reptile Postosuchus. It may have been able to walk on four or two legs (for grazing vs. running). Technosaurus was named by Chatterjee in 1984. The type species is T. smalli. Technosaurus is a doubtful genus.

Teinurosaurus (meaning "stretched tail lizard" because the tail vertebra was elongated) was a meat-eating dinosaur that lived during the late Jurassic Period. Fossil material (an elongated tail vertebra found in 1897) was been found in Boulogne-sur-Mer, France. The type species is T. sauvagei (named by Nopcsa, 1928, but was originally called Saurornithoides; the name was changed in 1929); it is a nomen dubem due to the scarcity of fossil material.

(pronounced teel-ee-oh-SAWR-us) Teleosaurus (meaning "completed lizard") was a genus of extinct marine crocodilians from the early Jurassic Period. This large reptilian was about 10 ft (3 m) long, had an armored back, and had a long, slender snout that was filled with sharp, interlocking teeth (similar to a modern-day gavial). The front legs were half the length of the rear legs. Tail and body movement may have propelled it through the water. Teleosaurus may have eaten Plesiosaurs, ichthyosaurs, fish, and squid. Unlike modern-day crocodilians, it had bi-concave vertebrae. Fossils have been found in Europe. Classification: Order Crocodylia, Suborder Mesosuchia.

(pronounced TEEL-ee-ost) Teleost (meaning "perfect-boned") fish are advanced fish with bones that evolved during the Jurassic Period. They are the most abundant fishes today.

(pronounced tell-MAT-oh-SAWR-us) Telmatosaurus (meaning "marsh lizard") was a primitive, duck-billed dinosaur that dates from the late Cretaceous Period, about 83-65 million years ago. This primitive hadrosaur was about 16 feet (5 m) long. Fossils of this plant-eater have been found in France, the Netherlands, and Romania. It was described by the Hungarian spy Franz Baron Nopsca in 1903.

Temnodontosaurus (also known as Leptopterygius) was a late Ichthyosaur, an extinct marine reptile, not a dinosaur. It was about 30 feet (9 m) long and looked a bit like a modern-day dolphin (but it is not at all related to the dolphins). It had a torpedo-shaped body, a long, narrow, toothed snout, 4 long, narrow paddles, a fish-like tail, and a triangular dorsal fin. They were viviparous (they gave birth to live young). These fish-eaters lived in shallow seas over what is now Europe (Germany and England) during the late Jurassic Period. (Order Ichthyosauria, Family Leptopterygiidae)