Learn about a new prehistoric animal every week with us. It will be a blast!
STL Science Center
19 April 2013
A Panoply of Armor
Uncredited (I am on the lookout for it)
Back in January I discussed an infant dinosaur discovered in Maryland that came to be called Propanoplosaurus, meaning "before Panoplosaurus". Perhaps I should have followed that closely by the dinosaur that the name somewhat came from, but I obviously did not, because I am discussing it this week. As with many other large herbivores of the Canadian and Western US' Cretaceous era soils, this is a wide, heavy, armored animal. Panoplosaurus was big in most every way. Its head was heavy and covered, dorsally, in thick bone. The thick cranium of the animal is not much when compared to the scutes discovered along its back and even along the caudal vertebrae of the tail. A Nodosaur, Panoplosaurus mirus ("totally armored lizard"), weighs in at approximately 6000lbs (2721.6kg or about 3 tons) and reaches lengths of 23ft (7m) for a middle sized individual.