Archaeologists have named a newly discovered dinosaur, adding to the Ceratopsidae family which includes the legendary Triceratops.
According to David Evans, one of the coauthors of the study published in the journal PLOS One on July 8, this new dinosaur species will be helping the scientists in determining how evolution of skull ornamentation took place in a specific group of dinos known for boasting horned faces.
Wendiceratops lived in a lush, warm coastal plain near the inland sea that bisected at the time, cropping plants with its parrot-like beak.
It’s believed the male dinosaurs used their two main horns to battle for female attention, according to the study. Palaeontologist further suggested that the development of horns has been a separate process for Wendiceratops and Triceraptors – the two different evolutionary line of dinosaurs to feature nasal horns. He continued by saying that there are chances that the Wendy dinos also had horns over their eyes.
The 6m-long beast, which would have weighed more than a tonne, has been dubbed the Wendiceratops pinhornensis – named after its discoverer, Wendy Sloboda, who is esteemed in Canada after several fossil discoveries such as the Barrosopus slobodai.
When carrying out excavations in the southern part of the famous Alberta site Oldman Formation, scientists found more than 200 bones belonging to a minimum of four Wendiceratops (one juvenile and three adults).
The Wendiceratops had one horn protruding from its brow and a second from its nose, while it had a crown of curled hornlets at the top of its head, paleontologists said.
MRyan01: “Wendiceratops is unique in that it has a very odd frill (coming) off the back of its skull, and there’s a series of short, curved, hook-like ornamentations that run the entire margin of that frill”.