“Edmonton lizard”
Late Cretaceous, 73-66 million years ago

Edmontosaurus was a large, duck-billed hadrosaur. It grazed in herds, and could walk on two legs or four. Thanks to a very rare fossil of a mummified specimen, scientists know that it had scaly, reptilian skin, and that the digits on its forelimbs were enclosed in a “mitten” of flesh. This has helped inform reconstructions of other hadrosaurids, such as Corythosaurus and Parasaurolophus. The term “flesh-mitten” is now widely accepted in the scientific community to be “[…] really gross if you think about it long enough.” [citation needed]

Nothing tickles me more when I read old dinosaur books than wimpy, gangly hadrosaurs baring their necks for a tyrannosaur’s waiting jaws, seemingly without a fight. I guess it’s easy to mistake them for easy prey, being that they generally lack obvious weapons of self-defense, like the flashy horns, armor, or spikes of some of their fellow ornithischians. The fact that size in and of itself can be a means of defense seems to have fallen by the wayside.

Keep reading


Meet Joe the Baby Dinosaur
Probably the only baby dinosaur with its own website … including:

… and for even more detailed models, check out the original scientific paper, which has a full set of links to relevant files.

Skeleton of the baby Parasaurolophus nicknamed “Joe.”

Skeleton of Parasaurolophus sp. in left lateral view.
(A) interpretive drawing; (B) photograph. Bones are bounded by solid lines and colored orange; blue indicates areas of fragmented and powdered bone due to weathering, and green indicates bone impressions.

Comparison of the size of the baby Parasaurolophus (green) to adult Parasaurolophus, as well as an adult and baby human.

High school student discovers skeleton of baby dinosaur
PhysOrg Oct 22, 2013 

A chance find by a high school student led to the youngest, smallest and most complete fossil skeleton yet known from the iconic tube-crested dinosaur Parasaurolophus. The discovery, announced today by the Raymond M. Alf Museum of Paleontology at The Webb Schools, shows that the prehistoric plant-eater sprouted its strange headgear before it celebrated its first birthday. 

Continue reading at PhysOrg …

Read the journal article:  Andrew A. Farke et al:  Ontogeny in the tube-crested dinosaur Parasaurolophus (Hadrosauridae) and heterochrony in hadrosaurids

Animalia  >  Chordata  >  Sauropsida  >  Dinosauriformes  >  Dinosauria  >
Order: †Ornithischia
Family: †Hadrosauridae
Genus:  †Parasaurolophus

GRAPHICS: Scott Hartman, Matt Martyniuk, and Raymond M. Alf Museum of Paleontology  |  DOI: 10.7717/peerj.182/fig-3

Parasaurolophus walkeri, P. tubicen, P. cyrtocristatus

Source: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/a-parasaurolophus-searches-for-a-source-mohamad-haghani.html

NameParasaurolophus walkeri, P. tubicen, P. cyrtocristatus 

Name Meaning: Near Crested Lizard 

First Described: 1922 

Described By: Parks 

ClassificationDinosauria, Ornithischia, Genasauria, Neornithischia, Cerapoda, Ornithopoda, Iguanodontia, Dryomorpha, Ankylopollexia, Styracosterna, Hadrosauriformes, Hadrosauroidea, Hadrosauridae, Euhadrosauria, Lambeosaurinae, Parasaurolophini 

My Sixth Favorite Dinosaur 

There is no real need to explain why Parasaurolophus is cool. It’s one of those dinosaurs that we actually know how it sounded. It had a badass crest and complex social groups. Holy crap. It lived about 76.5 to 73 million years ago, in the Campanian stage of the Late Cretaceous. It lived in many different places - Dinosaur Park Formation in Alberta, Canada; the Kirtland Formation in New Mexico, USA, and the Fruitland Formation in Utah, USA. This is a completely iconic hadrosaur species and it was about 9.5 meters long in the largest individuals. The crest was probably used to distinguish between members of different species and of different sexes, for audible communication, and even thermoregulation. Despite its fame, it’s actually a relatively rare hadrosaur, known from a few specimens. It was a facultative quadruped, and it had high neural spines that increased the height of its back. Skin impressions are known for P. walkeri, showing uniform scales but no other structures. Its crest is connected to its nose, and may or may not have had a skin flap connecting it to the neck, though this is not confirmed. The hollowness of the crest is notable in that it would have permitted sound to pass through it.  

Source: http://www.larryfelder.com/

The type species is known from only one fossil, but the other two species have at least three specimens to their names, with P. tubicen being the largest, and having the most complex air passages in its crest. P. cyrtocristatus was the smallest, with a short rounded crest. P. walkeri had the characteristic long, unrounded crest, and longer upper arms. Charonosaurus has begun to be considered instead of a very closely related genus, another species of ParasaurolophusP. jiayensis, which would make it the first non-North American species. Parasaurolophus was present in many different habitats. In Alberta, it lived along side Centrosaurus, Chasmosaurus, Gryposaurus, Corythosaurus, Gorgosaurus, Edmontonia, Euoplocephalus, and Dyoplosaurus, and was a rare part of the fauna. 

Source: http://www.framestore.com/work/itv-prehistoric-park

In New Mexico, P. crytocristatus lived with Utahceratops, Kosmoceratops, Pentaceratops, Ornithomimus, and teratophoneus. The larger species P. tubicen lived with Alamosaurus, Krotsaurus, Pentaceratops, Nodocephalosaurus, Sauronitholestes, and Bistahieversor. The Kirtland Formation in particular would have been a large floodplain with many conifers. In Utah, it lived in a plateau area near the Western Interior Seaway, a large floodplain with channels and peat swamps, ponds, lakes, and highlands. it was a wet and humid climate and a very diverse environment. Parasaurolophus lived alongside dromaeosaurids, talos, Ornithomimus, Albertosaurus, Teratophoneus, ankylosaurids, Gryposaurus, Utahceratops, Nasutoceratops, Kosmoceratops, and Hagryphus.

Source: Me. This is Max (my boyfriend) playing with the Parasaurolophus model in the Field Museum. One of my favorite photos. 

Parasaurolophus would have eaten plants while chewing, with constantly replaced teeth that were packed together into batteries with hundreds of teeth. It could crop plant life with its beak, and had a narrow beak for selective feeding. It crest was definitely for multiple purposes, and it’s not sure which purpose was the most important in its evolution. Its crest changed with age and was sexually dimorphic, however the major divergences in crest shape and length have been determined as differences in species. A small tubular crest was present in juveniles, with most of the supporting bones also smaller indicating that it had not yet reached maturity. However, Parasaurolophus crests started developing at a younger crest than its relatives such as Corythosaurus, showing how its crest could get so big in its lifespan. 

Source: Me again; Field Museum fossil of P. crytocristatus 

The crest was definitively not used for an aquatic lifestyle or any sort of amphibious lifestyle, and it was not used for moving or supporting the head. It also wasn’t a foliage deflector, a weapon, for housing specialized organs or salt glands, or expanded areas of olfactory tissue, or throwing jets of chemical fire at enemies. Yes. These were all hypotheses proposed over trumpet. I’m as baffled as you are. It was for auditory and visual communication and, given its size, gave a clear visual signal. Given that the animal had large eye sockets and sclerotic rings that means it would have had acute vision and diurnal habits, sight was very important for Parasaurolophus. Based on scans of their inner ears, it was found that they had a very well developed inner ear, and could hear high frequencies, allowing them to hear the chirps of their young as well as the calls made by other members of the species with their crests. Finally, the intense vascularization of the crest would have allowed the brain to be kept cool. 

Source: http://forums.superherohype.com/showthread.php?t=332214&page=2 

I had to. 




Shout out goes to riddikulus-darren!



Hasta el momento se cree que estos ejemplares de dinosaurios corresponderían al tipo de hadrosaurios, frecuentemente encontrados en el hemisferio norte,  y de iguanodóntia basales. Algo que explicaría también, por la lejanía de su hallazgo, la evolución de la flora y fauna entre el extremo de Sudamérica y la Antártica.

Sin embargo, este descubrimiento no llegó solo. El estudio sobre los dinosaurios más australes del mundo ocurrió gracias al desarrollo otra investigación chilena, basada en el hallazgo de 34 hojas de Nothofagus de la era de los dinosaurios, y que prueban el paso de esta especie desde la Antártica hasta Sudamérica.

Si bien estos fósiles, de 66 millones de años, pueden sonar extraños, comprenden varias especies que conocemos en Chile como robles, coihues, lengas, ñirres, raulíes, ruiles y hualos, pero presentes en un paisaje boscoso menos austral en la actualidad.

Fossil Friday, Lambeosaurus. 

© The Field Museum, GEO81559.

Preparing the Lambeosaurus skeleton in the Museum’s laboratory prepared free from enclosing matrix shows the natural death pose of the animal. Collected in 1921, Late Cretaceous. Shown in Geology prep area, third floor with radiators, coffee pot and office supplies. Order: Ornithischia, Family: Hadrosauridae. Geology specimen PR380.

8x10 negative


Maiasaura peeblesorum

Source: http://d2sbwudtr860bs.cloudfront.net/MMIAPW3014.jpg

NameMaiasaura peeblesorum 

Name Meaning: Good Mother Lizard

First Described: 1979

Described By: Horner & Makela 

ClassificationDinosauria, Ornithischia, Genasauria, Neornithischia, Cerapoda, Ornithopoda, Iguanodontia, Dryomorpha, Ankylopollexia, Styracosterna, Hadrosauriformes, Hadrosauroidea, Hadrosauridae, Euhadrosauria, Saurolophinae, Brachylophosaurini

My Favorite Dinosaur 

Maiasaura is famous for being found with remains of its nests, coining its name. Other than that, ti’s not a particularly remarkable animal - it wasn’t the largest hadrosaurid, it had no particularly exciting crests or features. But the fact that it was found with its nest was a turning point in paleontological theory. Dinosaurs were beginning to be seen not as cold, lizardlike animals, but complex and intelligent ones, with vibrant social interactions and behaviors. This is my previous post about it.

Source: http://planetdi.startlogic.com/dinosaur_list/images/maiasaura.gif

Maiasaura was about 9 meters long and 3 meters high, making it a very massive dinosaur. It had a small crest in front of its eyes that might have been used in headbutting contests between males in the breeding season. It lived in the late Cretaceous period, about 76.7 million years ago in the Campanian stage. It was found in the Two Medicine Formation in Montana. Back when I was little, it was still relatively rare (at least on display); since, many more fossils have been found, and there is now a juvenile at the Field Museum (I’m from Chicago,) so I can happily say I’ve seen a fossil of my favorite dinosaur. 

Oh look there’s me being a dork 

Maiasaura could walk on two or four legs, probably mainly walking on four legs when going slowly and running on two or four. It had few defenses against predators except for its heavy tail and herd behavior. It was originally found with its nests, suggesting that it took care of its young, an advanced animal behavior, and given the wide range of ages of the skeletons found, they took care of their young until they reached adulthood and fully joined the herd. Their nests were closely packed together like that of seabirds, with 30 to 40 eggs in each nest that were the size of an ostrich. Vegetation placed on the nests incubated them by rotting, instead of the parent sitting on the nest. Baby Maiasaura were not fully developed upon hatching and couldn’t walk, meaning Maiasaura parents had to bring food to the babies and protect them. 

Source: http://www.deviantart.com/art/Maiasaura-182453443 (by Ahrkeath)

The hatchlings grew from 41 to 147 centimeters in the first year, and then after that they left the nest. When they were young, they had shorter snouts and larger eyes, such features associated with cuteness which is used to incite parental instincts in adults. They grew very fast, indicating a homeothermic metabolism (warm-bloodedness) that, along with complex social behaviors and taking care of young, was probably synapomorphic across all hadrosaurs. Such complex social behaviors are also indicative of certain types of intelligence; while no herbivorous dinosaur got as intelligent as birds or advanced theropods, I believe that hadrosaurs were the smartest herbivores of the bunch. 


Given it’s maternal nature, Maiasaura is one of few dinosaurs with the feminine latin name, rather than the masculine. I also do not believe it is out of the question that Maiasaura young would have been feathered or fluffy, given the increasingly synapomorphic nature of feathers in Dinosauria as a whole. While adults probably did not retain integuments of this nature, quills on certain parts of the the body are also not out of the question. Maiasaura lived alongside Troodon, the hypsilophodont Orodromeus, and the dromaeosaurid bambiraptor. It also lived with the hadrosaurid Hypacrosaurus, which it probably intermingled with or possibly herded with, given that many of their remains were found together. Gryposaurus, another hadrosaurid, is also found in that range, indicating a very diverse area of hadrosaurid fauna. 

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Maiasaur_Pano-v1.jpg

Maiasaura also lived around the same time and around the same place as such dinosaurs as Styracosaurus, Achelousaurus, and Leptoceratops, as well as Euoplocephalus and EdmontoniaIt also probably was threatened by the tyrannosaurs Daspletosaurus and GorgosaurusMaiasaura, while being a rather famous dinosaur, is surprisingly not represented very frequently in dinosaur media; the only major example that comes to mind is Dinosaur Planet, where they featured as the prey animals in one episode. Hopefully, my favorite dinosaur will get the recognition it deserves. 

Source: http://www.fotolibra.com/gallery/34428/illustration-maiasaura-babies/

I want ten thousand. 

This dinosaur is also the dinosaur I personally identify with (as many people on the paleontology side of tumblr are apt to do,) for many reasons: 1) good mother - I, despite appearances, have a very strong mothering instinct. I care deeply about the people around me, and will protect them at all costs. 2) It is herbivorous - I am a vegetarian - but still, fairly intelligent for a herbivorous dinosaur - given its complex social behaviors - and not to toot my own horn, I am an intelligent herbivore too. 3) It is very social - while I am the weirdest introvert alive, I do love being around my family - so did Maiasaura. This dinosaur is my favorite, and I hope we find out more about it in the coming years. 




Shout out goes to me,  because why the hell not. It’s my fave dinosaur. 

And to conclude my birthday, here’s Barack Obama again: 

And we did, Mr. President. We did. 

nuingiliath  asked:

what is your favourite dinosaur?

welp, as a kid, it was, of course, Tyrannosaurus rex, which back then, in Ye Olden Books, looked like this

then this

and finally this, during the Jurassic Park era

of course, nowadays it’s more accurately depicted like this

i still have a soft spot for the ol’ bugger and especially good old Sue.

but then, as mentioned above, Jurassic Park happened, and holy frickle frackle, gimme the Dromaeosauridae family (especially the subfamilies Dromaeosaurinae and Velociraptorinae).

y’know. these kids

only they looked like this

i even did my final paper in vertebrate paleontology on Deinonychus antirrhopus. it wasn’t the only one my poor prof had to read, but he did say it was the best, so aw yiss.

i’m also really fond of Troodon, though. it was small and smart and adorable.

Carnotaurus is also on my list, mainly because lookit his wee arms

this “carnivorous bull” also probably had feathers, though, which makes the arms look much more sensible and bird-like

also Therizinosaurus has to be on this list somewhere. at first it was depicted as a hell-beast

when in actuality it was…well, still a hell-beast. but feathered. and less emaciated.

and finally, i have a special place in my heart for Hadrosaurids because of the sheer variety they had. they were the antelopes of the dino era.


The Mesozoic Park: Parasaurolophus Common name: Parasaurolophus (Parah-sore-oh-loh-fuss) Size: 9.5 metres (31 feet) Age: Campanian to Cretaceous (76.5 – 73 million years ago) Geographic range: North America Liked: Grazing Disliked: the T-Rex

Taxonomy: Animalia > Chordata > Dinosauria > Ornithiscia > Hadrosauridae > Parasaurolophus

The Parasaurolophus was an herbivorous dinosaur from the Cretaceous period. It was both biped and quadruped, and is easily identified by its huge head crest. Three species of Parasaurolophus have been identified: P. walkeri,P. tubicen, and P. cyrtocristatus.

There have been many supported theories on what the crest does for the species:

Keep reading

Corythosaurus casuarius

Source: http://ahrkeath.deviantart.com/art/Corythosaurus-in-color-127602608

Name: Corythosaurus casuarius

Name Meaning: Helmeted Reptile

First Described: 1914

Described By: Brown

ClassificationDinosauria, Ornithischia, Genasauria, Neornithischia, Cerapoda, Ornithopoda, Iguanodontia, Dryomorpha, Ankylopollexia, Styracosterna, Hadrosauriformes, Hadrosauroidea, Hadrosauridae, Euhadrosauria, Lambeosaurinae, Lambeosaurini

Corythosaurus was a hadrosaur from the Campanian age of the Late Cretaceous, about 77 to 75.7 million years ago. It was found originally in the Red Deer River, Alberta, Canada, and has been found in the Dinosaur Park Formation and the Oldman Formation. It was about 9 meters long, and it was one of the largest hadrosaurids, only smaller than Shantungosaurus and Parasaurolophus. It had a shorter and smaller skull than Edmontosaurus, Kritosaurus, or Saurolophus, but when the crest is included, the area is similar. It had a tall, bony crest on its skull that contained elongate and elaborate nasal passages. The preserved crest is flattened, and it would have been much larger when alive. It resembles the crest of a cassowary. It had a very narrow mouth, as well. 

Source: http://pheaston.deviantart.com/art/Corythosaurus-341111213

Corythosaurus was found with soft tissue - the original fossil was found covered in polygonal scales in various sizes all over the body. Shieldlike scales separate the polygonal scales, arranged in close rows. It also had tendons on all the vertebrae, each flattened at the beginning and then rounding towards the end. It may have been cathemeral, or active throughout the day at short intervals. It had a greatly developed sense of hearing, to detect as much sound as a modern crocodile. The crest could have been used to make warning calls or attract mates, and vocalization passing through the crest could get amplified, making low and loud cries like a wind or brass instrument, such as a trombone. Corythosaurus may have communicated amongst themselves to announce that they’ve found food, or that a predator was approaching. 

Source: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/woodland-encounter–corythosaurus-angie-rodrigues.html (Angie Rodrigues)

Fossilized juveniles of the genus are known, but its hard to know exactly if they are of Corythosaurus or not, as juveniles of the Lambeosaurines don’t have crests. Corythosaurus started to develop its crest when about half the size of an adult, compared to Parasaurolophus which did at about a fourth the size. Its shallow and delicate beak would have been used to feed on soft vegetation, such as the juciest fruits and the youngest leaves, as well as conifer needles, seeds, and twigs, which have been found in its chest cavity. 

Source: http://www.redbubble.com/people/artistatwork/works/2448239-prairie-moon-corythosaurus

Corythosaurus lived in a dinosaur-rich area, alongside Daspletosaurus, Saurornitholestes, Brachylophosaurus, Gryposaurus, Parasaurolophus, Scolosaurus, Coronosaurus, Chasmosaurus, Centrosaurus, Gryposaurus, Edmontonia, Dyoplosaurus, Panoplosaurus, Euoplocephalus, and Gorgosaurus, depending on the time or the place. It was one of the most abundant dinosaurs in southern Alberta, but it hasn’t been found outside of that area, and large hadrosaurs in North America in the Late Cretaceous had amazingly small geographic ranges despite their large size and mobility. The reasons for this are currently unknown. 



This was another piece done for DGittins1 on twitter! He told me to pick my favorite non-sauropod, I have already done Maisaura, so I picked another lovely hadrosaur! Remember if you donate to the Project for Awesome (link here) I will do an organism of your choice! Only eight hours left!


The Mesozoic Park: Corythosaurus

Common name: ‘Duck Billed’ Dinosaur Size: up to 9 m (30 ft) long Age: Upper Cretaceous (77 – 75.7 million years ago) Geographic range: North America Liked: Chatting Disliked: Swimming Taxonomy: Animalia > Chordata > Dinosauria > Ornithischia > Hadrosauridae

Affectionately known as the 'Duck Billed Dinosaur’, this big herbivore was a communicator.

Keep reading