marco_polo Moderator

A new species of dinosaur has been described. The sauropod which has been named Abydosaurus. The discoverers had the good fortune to find four head, including two fully complete. Very rare as heads for only eight of more than 120 known varieties of sauropod have been found thus far.

Analysis of the bones indicates that the closest relative of Abydosaurus is Brachiosaurus, which lived 45 million years earlier. The four Abydosaurus specimens were all juveniles.

Most of what scientists know about sauropods is from the neck down, but the skulls from Abydosaurus give a few clues about how the largest land animals to roam the earth ate their food.

"They didn't chew their food; they just grabbed it and swallowed it," Britt said. "The skulls are only one two-hundredth of total body volume and don't have an elaborate chewing system."

All sauropods ate plants and continually replaced their teeth throughout their lives. In the Jurassic Period, sauropods exhibited a wide range of tooth shapes. But by the end of the dinosaur age, all sauropods had narrow, pencil-like teeth.

Abydosaurus teeth are somewhere in between, reflecting a trend toward smaller teeth and more rapid tooth replacement.

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Zadkiel Registered User

Apparently the reason for so few heads having been found was due to many sauropod skulls being made up of many small bone plates fused together with connective tissue which resulted in them breaking down quicker. Great find and to find four in one place!

Galvasean Registered User

Abydosaurus mcintoshi? I think we have a new one for our inappropriate names thread

Pic of skulls:

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