#FossilFriday

At one time, some scientists thought Stegosaurus had a second brain because the one in its head seemed so small. Stegosaurus did, however, manage with one small brain.

Stegosaurus plates have grooves for blood vessels, indicating that they were covered with skin when the animal was alive. These plates were probably used in display or species recognition, much like the horns of many modern animals, including deer and antelope.

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Couple of researchers taking measurements on the first Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton ever found and characterized - called the Holotype of the species, it now resides at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh, PA @carnegiemuseumnaturalhistory

Micropachycephalosaurus hongtuyanensis

By José Carlos Cortés on @ryuukibart

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Name: Micropachycephalosaurus hongtuyanensis

Name Meaning: Small Thick-Headed Reptile

First Described: 1978

Described By: Dong

Classification: Dinosauria, Ornithischia, Genasauria, Neornithischia, Cerapoda, Marginocephalia, Ceratopsia

Micropachycephalosaurus is our first in-order Ceratopsian, and it ironically has a very similar name to a Pachycephalosaur. Still, it is a Ceratopsian, and a very early derived one at that. Micropachycephalosaurus lived in Laiyang, Shandong Province, China, between 70 and 68 million years ago. Though the location is not surprising - it is thought that Ceratopsians first evolved in Asia - the time is. Phylogenetic analyses have confirmed it as a very early derived member of the group and not a Pachycephalosaur as originally thought, or as an indeterminant Cerapod; however, Ceratopsians had evolved in the Late Jurassic, giving this animal a very long ghost lineage. It is known from a partial skull and skeleton which is extremely fragmentary and poorly preserved, luckily, so it can’t really be used as a model for early derived Ceratopsians - and it shouldn’t be, given that it occurs much later than Ceratopsians diverged from Pachycephalosaurs, and thus, could have evolved unique features of its own. Micropachycephalosaurus was small at only about 1 meter long, bipedal, and herbivorous. 

Sources:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Micropachycephalosaurus

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ceratopsia

Butler, R. J., Q. Zhao. 2009. The small-bodied ornithischian dinosaurs Micropachycephalosaurus hongtuyanensis and Wannanosaurus yansiensis from the Late Cretaceous of China. Cretaceous Research 30: 63-77. 

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A video of all the #dinovember #tvdinovember illustrations I made in November. Thanks to all who followed and participated!!

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The 2016 Dinosaur Gift Guide
It's that time of year again, and once more your trusty paleo-bloggers of LITC are here to offer some very cool dinosaur gifts sure to satisfy the enthusiasts of Mesozoic megafauna in your life. As in years past, we will focus on products that look cool, reflect the modern state of paleoart, and come from independent artists and creators.

An English fossil hunter recently found a small brown pebble that turned out to be the first ever example of fossilized dinosaur brain tissue. Despite its age, many of the structures were preserved, remnants of its networks, capillaries, and blood vessels are still present, and these remaining tissues show evidence that dino brains may have been far larger than we previously thought. Source