STL Science Center

STL Science Center

03 October 2014

Near Horned Faces

This entry is backdated to yesterday. Yesterday was a long tiring day and I wasted the evening away in a video game. Sometimes you have to turn off the brain.

Image Credit: Wikicommons user FunkMonk
There are times when I talk about similar dinosaurs that no matter how much I searched the blog I find myself amazed that I have not discussed that dinosaur before. That is the case with a healthy number of the ceratopsian dinosaurs that we discuss, and this week is no different. We will delve into the realm of a horned dinosaur known as Anchiceratops. One species is recognized (Anchiceratops ornatus Brown 1914) and a second species (Anchiceratops longirostris) was synonymized years later. This quadruped is from an earlier time period than its relative Triceratops and was a little smaller, with estimates topping out at around 16.4 feet (5 meters) long and girth estimates figuring it for a much lighter ceratopsian. An estimate of weight by Greg Paul comes in at approximately 1.2 tonnes; Triceratops is estimated between 6.1 - 12.0 tonnes. The parietalsquamosal frill was very ornately laid out, giving us the specific epithet of ornatus. Little is known about the postcranial body and most images fill this in with the idealized chasmosaur body type, making it look fairly recognizable and vaguely bovine. This dinosaur was discovered in 1912 by Barnum Brown and papers are still being written 100+ years later (the most recent was published in 2012).

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