"Triceratops" by Nobu Tamura is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

Half-Size, Ruffle-Headed Relative of Triceratops Discovered

Dec 14, 2018

By Laura Geggel

If head frills were a fashion statement, a newly identified 73-million-year-old triceratops relative was certainly at the top of its game.

The newfound dinosaur named Crittendenceratops krzyzanowskii sported a fancy frill on the top of its head, a new study finds. In fact, it’s the youngest-known dinosaur of its clade (the nasutoceratopsins), as well as the first of its clade on record to sport an elaborate frill, the researchers said.

“This clade has simple frills.” said study co-lead researcher Sebastian Dalman, who was at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science at the time of the research. “Crittendenceratops is the first member of this clade with [an] ornamented frill.”

The late Stan Krzyzanowski, a research associate at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science, discovered two of the late Cretaceous creatures in the 1990s in a mountain range near Tucson, Arizona. Krzyzanowski and his colleagues briefly described the dinosaur in a 2003 study, but it wasn’t until recently that another look at fossils revealed they represented an unidentified species.

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