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STL Science Center
13 February 2016
Frills for Wendy
(C) Danielle Dufault
The frill of Wendiceratops is one of the things that sets the dinosaur apart from other ceratopsians. The highly ornamented fused parietals and squamosals that make up the frill have osteoderms that, unlike many other ceratopsian frill topping osteoderms, point back anteriorly and inferiorly toward the face. There are a few other members of the family at large that have frills that are something like this, but none of these takes their osteoderms to the same extreme. The patterning of the osteoderms and the stunted nasal horn are common characteristics of the sister group of Chasmosaurines within the Ceratopsidae known as the Centrosaurines. These sister groupings separate dinosaurs like Triceratops and Chasmosaurus from dinosaurs like Wendiceratops and Centrosaurus. Many other characters separate the two groups as well and most are found in the skulls. These include not only the general shape of the nasal horn but also its position posterior to the external nares, the postorbital bones are shortened or absent, and short deep snouts. The middle two osteoderms in particular are also considered diagnostic of Centrosaurines, as Chasmosaurines do not have extensive osteoderm frill horns in these positions.