Temporal range: Early Cenomanian
Alexander Vieira's reconstruction of Oxalaia quilombensis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Sauropsida
Order: Saurischia
Suborder: Theropoda
Family: Spinosauridae
Subfamily: Spinosaurinae
Genus: Oxalaia
Kellner et al., 2011
Referred species
  • Oxalaia quilombensis
    (Kellner et al., 2011) (type)
Oxalaia quilombensis is a genus of large carnivorous theropod.

It was a large theropod species from Spinosauridae family; which lived during the late Cretaceous period; in the early Cenomanian stage, about 98 mya; on the continental landmass, that is now, South America, Brazil. [1]


The only known Oxalaia fossil

Discovery and naming

The theropod's name; Oxalaia; is a reference to the African deity Oxala.

All known Fossils of Oxalaia recovered in 2004 from the Laje do Coringa locality of the Alcantara Formation, from the São Luís Basin; part of the Itapecuru Group. Besides these bone fragments, numerous instances of spinosaurid teeth had earlier been reported from the site. The genus was named by Alexander Wilhelm Armin Kellner, Sergio A.K. Azevedeo, Elaine B. Machado, Luciana B. Carvalho and Deise D.R. Henriques in 2011 and the type species is Oxalaia quilombensis. [2]

The specific name quilombensis refers to the quilombo settlements, such as on Cajual Island, which was founded by escaped slaves.


Estimates suggest that it was 11.9 to 14.5 meters (39 to 46 ft) in length and 5.5 to 7 tonnes (5.5 to 7.7 short tons) in weight. It is the largest theropod known from Brazil and the eighth officially named species of theropod from Brazil. In 2018; several known fossils, albeit not all, are destroyed by fire that happened on the national history museum of Brazil.


The Large theropod classified as a distinct species of Spinosauridae; in the inner family of Spinosaurinae.

It was speculated that Oxalaia might potentially be a subspecies of Spinosaurus; although it's possible its only a presumption; its, currently, considered very unlikely due to higher geographic distance.

However in 2020, a publication has contributed to possiblity that the Oxalaia being a synonym to Spinosaurus; albeit more research on the topic is necessary before the final conclusion.


The Oxalaia's dietary preference was similiar to known Spinosaurid species, such as Irritator; a Generalist Carnivore. It will eat any source of Meat but likely had preference for animals around water.

In the Media

  • It’s possible that the Spinosauridae pronounced & identified as an Empirosaur, in Terra Nova might be an adult Oxalaia. Since the Horned Carnotaurus also Featured In the show, was also a Theropod that lived in South America.




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