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New armored dinosaur species known in Utah as the "thorn's head"



A new armored dinosaur species discovered in Utah was called Akainacephalus johnsoni, with the first name meaning "thorny head". The Ankylosaurid further confirms that there were at least two immigration events that took place in the late Cretaceous. ( Utah Museum of Natural History | YouTube )

A new armored dinosaur species was discovered by paleontologists in Utah, and they called it "thorny head" because of the spikes and cones on its head

That's 76 million Years old dinosaur fossil, which once lived on the lost continent of Laramidia, is now exhibited in the National History Museum of Utah in Salt Lake City.

Meet Thorny Head: The Akainacephalus Johnsoni

The new armored dinosaur, an Ankylosaurid, was discovered in the Kaiparowits Formation of the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in Kane County, southern Utah. He was called Akainacephalus johnsoni, his first name means "thorny head," and his second name is dedicated to Randy Johnson, a volunteer museum worker who helped prepare the dinosaur's skull.

During the excavation of the fossil paleontologists of the University of Utah and the Natural History Museum of Utah, a very well-preserved skull of the armored dinosaur could be seen along with bone armor in the form of thorn plates and neck rings, multiple vertebrae, limb bones and an almost complete tail with the Obtaining iconic ankylosaurs The Akainacephalus johnsoni was 1

3 feet to 16 feet long and about 3.5 feet tall. Like other Ankylosaurids, it was built for defense, allowing it to survive in the late Cretaceous against predators such as the Tyrannosaurus rex.

Two Ankylosaurids in North America

Ankylosaurid dinosaurs are herbivores that are known for their body armor and tail clubs, and their fossils were previously found in North America. However, the Ankylosaurids associated with North America have a smooth bone armor on their skulls, but the Akainacephalus johnsoni had a spiky, bony armor on its skull and snout that resembled the Asian Ankylosaurids that lived 125 million years ago

The Discovery Akainacephalus johnsoni concluded that there were at least two immigration events that occurred in the late Cretaceous.

When the sea level reached some of the highest levels in Earth's history, the North American continent was essentially divided into two. The West was known as Laramidia, while the East was known as Appalachia. However, on some occasions, sea levels dropped briefly, allowing dinosaurs, including Asian Ankylosaurids, to cross the Beringian land bridge to North America.

"It is extremely fascinating and important for the paleontology science to better understand so much fossil information that enables us to understand extinct organisms and their ecosystems," said Jelle Wiersma, first author of the study on Akainacephalus johnsoni ,

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