News / Science & Technology

New Horned Dinosaur Unearthed

Artist rendition of Nasutoceratops, which lived in a swampy, subtropical setting on the “island continent” of western North America, known as Laramidia. (Credit: Lukas Panzarin)
Artist rendition of Nasutoceratops, which lived in a swampy, subtropical setting on the “island continent” of western North America, known as Laramidia. (Credit: Lukas Panzarin)
Rosanne Skirble
A new species of horned dinosaur has been unearthed in Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument in the high rugged desert of southern Utah. Nasutoceratops - which means big-nosed horn face - lived 76 million years ago, in the late Cretaceous period, in what was then a subtropical swampy environment.
 
Scott Sampson, chief curator with the Natural History Museum at the University of Utah, led the excavation that found what appears to be a new branch of the horned dinosaur family tree. He said Nasutoceratops' skull has a significantly different set of horns than its well-known cousin, Triceratops. 
 
“It’s unique in having this tiny little horn over the nose and then these big long horns over the eyes, which is very different from the closest relative, within that group of horned dinosaurs," he said.   
 
Eric Lund discovered the Nasutoceratops skull in 2006 as a graduate student at the University of Utah. Courtesy: University of UtahEric Lund discovered the Nasutoceratops skull in 2006 as a graduate student at the University of Utah. Courtesy: University of Utah
x
Eric Lund discovered the Nasutoceratops skull in 2006 as a graduate student at the University of Utah. Courtesy: University of Utah
Eric Lund discovered the Nasutoceratops skull in 2006 as a graduate student at the University of Utah. Courtesy: University of Utah
The four-legged herbivore measured about five meters from head to tail and weighed about 2.5 tons. Sampson said the discovery includes a nearly complete skull, 1.5 meters long, and pieces of two or three other skulls. 
 
“With that mostly complete skull there is a neck and part of the back, that is the vertebrae in the backbone," he said. "We also have a forelimb shoulder and forelimb all the way down to the foot on that one animal.  So, we’re missing the back end of Nasutoceratops right now.” 
 
The vast 800,000-hectare Grand Staircase- Escalante National Monument is the last great dinosaur boneyard in the United States.  For most of the Late Cretaceous period, a warm, shallow sea extended from what is now the Arctic Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico, subdividing North American into eastern and western landmasses, known as Appalachia and Laramidia, respectively.  Laramidia was the same size as current day Australia.  Beginning in the 1960s, paleontologists began to notice the same major groups of dinosaurs over Laramidia, but different species of these groups occurred in the north and south.  
 
Nasutoceratops will be on permanent display at the Natural History Museum of Utah.  The discovery was announced in the British scientific journal, "Proceedings of the Royal Society B."

You May Like

At Khmer Rouge Court, Long-Awaited Verdict Approaches

First phase of trial, which is coming to an end, has focused on forced exodus of Phnom Penh in 1975 - and now many are hopeful justice will be served More

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities More

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

Downing of Malaysian airliner, allegations of cross-border shelling move information war in war-torn country to a new level More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
July 31, 2014 8:13 PM
The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.
Video

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.
Video

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.
Video

Video Gazans in Shelled School Sought Shelter

Israel's air and ground assault against Hamas-led fighters in Gaza has forced many Palestinians to flee their homes, seeking safety. But safe places are hard to find, as VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jabaliya.
Video

Video Rapid Spread of Ebola in West Africa Prompts Global Alert

Across West Africa, health officials are struggling to keep up with what the World Health Organization describes as the worst ebola outbreak on record. The virus has killed hundreds of people this year. U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders are watching the developments closely as they weigh what actions, if any, are needed to help contain the disease.
Video

Video Michelle Obama: Young Africans Need to Embrace Women's Rights

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama urged some of Africa's best and brightest to advocate for women's rights in their home countries. As VOA's Pam Dockins explains, Obama spoke to some 500 participants of the Young African Leaders Initiative, a six-week U.S.-based training and development program.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.
Video

Video Study: Latino Students Most Segregated in California

Even though legal school segregation ended in the United States 60 years ago, one study finds segregation still occurs in the U.S. based on income and race. The University of California Los Angeles Civil Rights Project finds that students in California are more segregated by race than ever before, especially Latinos. Elizabeth Lee reports for VOA from Los Angeles.

AppleAndroid