New Armored Dinosaur Species Discovered In Utah Named 'Thorny Head'

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New Armored Dinosaur Species Discovered In Utah Named 'Thorny Head'

Together with a total head, the fossil additionally consists of the distinct tail club, huge components of its back vertebral column as well as components of its body shield, consisting of 2 neck rings as well as spiked shield plates, the gallery stated in a declaration.

Paleontologists excavated in National forest, Utah and found the skeleton of a new species of dinosaur.

Casts of the Akainacephalus johnsoni fossil are now on public display at the Natural History of Museum of Utah in Salt Lake City.

Instead of the distinctive smooth armour on the skull shown on other North American fossils, the new species has pointed bones protruding in ridges up to its snout - similar to Asian ankylosaurid fossils.

The dinosaur's name, johnsoni, was used to honor museum volunteer Randy Johnson who helped prepare the skull.

A study about the find was published in the journal PeerJ on Thursday in conjunction with the announcement of the exhibit.

"This is a really remarkable species", declared Jelle Wiersma who is a doctoral candidate in geosciences at Australia's James Cook University and a co-author of the study announcing the discovery.

According to the inquiries about the "Akainacephalus johnson", this quadruped herbivore had its body covered by an armor of bone plates. Although many ankylosaurids dinosaur fossils have been found over the years in the southwestern U.S., the recent fossil offers the most complete skeleton of an ankylosaurid in the region.

Mr Wiersma has called the dinosaur the "Akainacephalus johnsoni" and verified that it belonged to the Ankylosaurid family.

Other recently discovered species include large and small meat-eating dinosaurs, horned dinosaurs and duck-billed dinosaurs.

Unearthed from the GSENM's Kaiparowits Formation - together with the remains of a duck-bill dinosaur, a new species of turtle, and a relative of alligators, notes CNN - the dinosaur's bones took nearly four years of preparations before they could be studied and made ready for the big unveiling.

It's not big by most dinosaur standards - between only 13 and 16 feet long - but you can bet its armored tail with a club packed a good punch. Eventually, the sea shrank and the two parts combined to form what is now known as North America.

Ankylosaurids originated in current-day Asia, first appearing in the fossil record some 125 to 100 million years ago.

Since the northern and southern ankylosaurs of the Americas look so different from one each other, Wiersma believes the Late Cretaceous witnessed at least two migrations of ankylosaurids.

Akainacephalus once roamed the southern part of Laramidia, a landmass on the western coast of a shallow sea that flooded the central region, splitting the continent of North America in two.

This indicates Akainacephalus and Nodocephalosaurus wereclose kin to Asian ankylosaurs and that multiple emigrationevents involving this group occurred from Asia to North Americalate in the Cretaceous Period, the researchers said. "It is extremely fascinating and important for the science of paleontology that we can read so much information from the fossil record, allowing us to better understand extinct organisms and the ecosystems they were a part of", says Wiersma.

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