Paläontologische Zeitschrift

, Volume 89, Issue 3, pp 485–502 | Cite as

Dinosaur teeth from the Jurassic Qigu and Shishugou Formations of the Junggar Basin (Xinjiang/China) and their paleoecologic implications

  • Oliver Wings
  • Thomas Tütken
  • Denver W. Fowler
  • Thomas Martin
  • Hans-Ulrich Pfretzschner
  • Ge Sun
Research Paper


The Middle and early Late Jurassic Qigu and Shishugou Formations of the southern and central Junggar Basin yielded teeth of theropods (Theropoda indet.), sauropods (Eusauropoda indet.), and stegosaurs. The dinosaur assemblage of the southern Junggar Basin is less diverse and is represented by smaller forms than in the central part of the basin. The microwear of the teeth of Eusauropoda indet. resembles that observed in Camarasaurus and may have formed as a result of biting through resistant woody materials. Carbon and oxygen isotope data of the sauropod and theropod teeth indicate feeding within a C3-plant ecosystem in a continental setting. Differences in enamel δ13C and δ18O values between Eusauropoda indet. and the theropod teeth are comparable to those observed in other herbivorous and carnivorous vertebrates, and suggest at least partial preservation of original dietary signals.


Dinosauria Microwear Carbon isotopes Oxygen isotopes Diet 


Aus den mitteljurassischen und früh-spätjurassischen Qigu- und Shishugou-Formationen des südlichen und zentralen Junggar-Beckens werden Zähne von Theropoden (Theropoda indet.), Sauropoden (Eusauropoda indet.) und Stegosauriern beschrieben. Die Dinosaurier-Vergesellschaftung des südlichen Junggar-Beckens ist weniger mannigfaltig und wird durch kleinere Formen repräsentiert als im zentralen Teil des Beckens. Die Microwear der Zähne von Eusauropoda indet. ähnelt dem bei Camarasaurus beobachteten Muster und könnte durch das Beißen auf hartes verholztes Pflanzenmaterial entstanden sein. Die Kohlenstoff- und Sauerstoffisotopie der Zähne der Sauropoden und Theropoden weist auf die Nahrungsaufnahme in einem kontinentalen Ökosystem mit C3-Pflanzen hin. Die Unterschiede in den δ13C- and δ18O-Werten des Zahnschmelzes der Eusauropoda indet. und den Theropoden-Zähnen sind vergleichbar mit denen anderer herbivorer und karnivorer Wirbeltiere. Die Werte lassen vermuten, dass die originalen ernährungsbedingten Isotopen-Zusammensetzungen zumindest teilweise erhalten geblieben sind.


Dinosaurier Microwear Kohlenstoffisotope Sauerstoffisotope Ernährung 



For collaboration and field assistance, we are deeply indebted to personnel from the Geological Survey No. 1 of Xinjiang in Urumqi and the Jilin University in Changchun. We would like to thank Li Jie, Gong Fanhao, Wu Wenhao, Nils Knötschke, Ruth Lobbe, and Sebastian Egberts for their help during excavation and preparation. Michael W. Maisch is acknowledged for providing access to two specimens found during earlier field expeditions of the Sino-German Project. For technical support with SEM, we are indebted to Hartmut Schulz. We thank the reviewers Paul Barrett, Henry Fricke, and John Whitlock as well as the editor Oliver Rauhut for their comments and suggestions, which considerably improved the manuscript. The project was funded by technical grants MA 1643/11 and PF 219/21 of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG), by the Natural Science Foundation of China—NSFC No. 30111130458 and 30111330457 (2011), and Sino-German Science Center GZ295 (2005–2008). TT acknowledges funding by the DFG grant TU 148/1-1 and the Emmy Noether-Program, grant TU 148/2-1 and the isotope measurements by Bernd Steinhilber, University of Tübingen. Doctoral funding and support for DF was provided by the Sands family, Damaris Waggoner, the Horner Fund, the MSU Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience, Jack Horner, and the Museum of the Rockies. This is contribution number 159 of the DFG Research Unit 533 “Biology of the Sauropod Dinosaurs”.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Oliver Wings
    • 1
    • 2
  • Thomas Tütken
    • 3
  • Denver W. Fowler
    • 5
  • Thomas Martin
    • 4
  • Hans-Ulrich Pfretzschner
    • 6
  • Ge Sun
    • 7
    • 8
  1. 1.Niedersächsisches Landesmuseum HannoverHannoverGermany
  2. 2.Museum für Naturkunde BerlinBerlinGermany
  3. 3.Institut für GeowissenschaftenUniversität MainzMainzGermany
  4. 4.Steinmann Institut für Geologie, Mineralogie und PaläontologieUniversität BonnBonnGermany
  5. 5.Museum of the RockiesBozemanUSA
  6. 6.Institut für GeowissenschaftenUniversität TübingenTübingenGermany
  7. 7.Jilin UniversityChangchunChina
  8. 8.Shenyang Normal UniversityShenyangChina

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