The Americas

Mexican politician gives his name to dinosaur

Most Mexican politicians avoid being associated with dinosaurs, a term Mexicans use to describe old-guard, corrupt politicos.

But one politician lent his name to a new species of plesiosaur, a kind of marine reptile with flippers that went extinct about 66 million years ago.

The dinosaur species was dubbed Mauriciosaurus fernandezi after Mauricio Fernandez, the mayor of a suburb of Monterrey in Nuevo Leon state.

The Museum of the Desert in Coahuila state said Monday that Fernandez turned the fossil over to the museum after it was discovered in 2011 by quarry workers in Nuevo Leon.

The museum said the fossil had unusual traces of fossilized skin and soft tissue.

Fernandez has made news in the past, announcing the 2009 death of a kidnapper before police even reported the discovery.