Navigation Links
'Grinding mouth, wrinkle eye': Penn graduate student describes new species of plant-eating dinosaur
Date:5/26/2010

PHILADELPHIA - A team of paleontologists, including a University of Pennsylvania doctoral candidate, has described a new species of dinosaur based upon an incomplete skeleton found in western New Mexico. The new species, Jeyawati rugoculus, comes from rocks that preserve a swampy forest ecosystem that thrived near the shore of a vast inland sea 91 million years ago.

The dinosaur, whose name translates to mean "grinding-mouth, wrinkle-eye," was most likely an herbivore that ate the ferns and conifer trees found as fossils in the same rock layer. A basal hadrosauroid, the find included partial skull bones, several vertebrae and fragments of the ribs.

Jeyawati is a close relative of the duck-billed hadrosaurs, which were abundant across the Northern Hemisphere for much of the Late Cretaceous Epoch, between 80 and 65 million years ago. Jeyawati retains some primitive features of the teeth and jaws that preclude it from being a fully-fledged hadrosaur.

Jeyawati, pronounced "HEY-a-WHAT-ee," is derived from two words in the language of the Zuni people, a Native American tribe located around the Zuni River in western New Mexico. The name is a reference to the sophisticated chewing mechanism evolved by the herbivorous lineage to which Jeyawati belongs.

The second part of the name, rugoculus, comes from the Latin words ruga and oculus and means "wrinkle eye," describing a unique feature of the new species. One of the bones that forms the eye socket exhibits a peculiar rough or wrinkly texture on its outer side, suggesting that Jeyawati rugoculus might have sported one or more large scales above and behind its eye.

"Jeyawati apparently endured a hard life," said Andrew T. McDonald, lead author of the study and a doctoral candidate in Penn's Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences. "Several of the rib fragments have a swollen, rough surface, indicating that the animal suffered broken ribs at some point in its life and that those injuries healed before the animal's death."

Although the fossil remains were discovered in 1996, it has only now been confirmed that the species is unique. Jeyawati is a member of an assemblage of dinosaurs and other animals unknown as recently as 15 years ago.

McDonald began his classification of the find while a student at the University of Nebraska, before completing the work with Peter Dodson, professor of anatomy and paleontontology in the schools of Veterinary Medicine and Arts and Sciences at Penn.

"From looking at the more complete remains of species related to Jeyawati, we can make several assumptions," McDonald said, "including that the creature probably walked on all fours but was also capable of rearing up on two legs."

The bones now reside at the Arizona Museum of Natural History, where specimens of other dinosaurs uncovered in this region are also located.

Dinosaurs that coexisted with Jeyawati include Zuniceratops, the earliest known North American horned dinosaur, and Nothronychus, a strange herbivorous beast belonging to a lineage that, until the discovery of Nothronychus, was known only from Asia.

The partial skull and other fragments of Jeyawati were discovered by paleontologist Douglas Wolfe, principal investigator of the Zuni Basin Paleontological Project. Subsequent excavation and collection was carried out for 13 years with the aid of James Kirkland, state paleontologist with the Utah Geological Survey, and volunteers from the Southwest Paleontological Society, among others.

In 2006, McDonald, then an undergraduate geology student, began a project to describe the fossil. The analysis revealed that the bones were sufficiently distinct from those of other dinosaurs to warrant the naming of a new species.


'/>"/>

Contact: Jordan Reese
jreese@upenn.edu
215-573-6604
University of Pennsylvania
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Antioxidant to retard wrinkles discovered by Hebrew University researcher
2. Evolutions new wrinkle
3. Baby boomers boon? LED light and green tea cream to smooth facial wrinkles
4. A new wrinkle in ancient ocean chemistry
5. Heres venom in your eye: Spitting cobras hit their mark
6. ASPB announces Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship 2007 recipients
7. Woods Hole Research Center to lead undergraduate initiative in the Siberian Arctic
8. Alaska graduate program in sustainability receives $3.2 million award
9. BGSU undergraduates to pilot groundbreaking genome project
10. Computational mathematical sciences receives NSF grant for undergraduate research
11. Katherine Freed wins first place at the International ISPE Undergraduate Poster Contest
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
'Grinding mouth, wrinkle eye': Penn graduate student describes new species of plant-eating dinosaur
(Date:4/5/2017)... April 5, 2017  The Allen Institute for Cell ... Explorer: a one-of-a-kind portal and dynamic digital window into ... data, the first application of deep learning to create ... cell lines and a growing suite of powerful tools. ... these and future publicly available resources created and shared ...
(Date:4/4/2017)... , April 4, 2017   EyeLock LLC , ... that the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) ... covers the linking of an iris image with a ... and represents the company,s 45 th issued patent. ... is very timely given the multi-modal biometric capabilities that ...
(Date:3/30/2017)... 2017 The research team of The Hong ... fingerprint identification by adopting ground breaking 3D fingerprint minutiae recovery and ... speed and accuracy for use in identification, crime investigation, immigration control, ... ... A research team led ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:9/20/2017)... , ... September 20, 2017 , ... Diversity focused business ... multi-city Fueling the Growth pitch competition to uncover the top technology-driven, women-led startups in ... an integral part of each city’s entrepreneurial events going on that week – in ...
(Date:9/20/2017)... ... September 20, 2017 , ... ... findings of a study examining the effects of exoskeleton-assisted walking on gait ... injury (SCI). The article, "Neuromechanical adaptations during a robotic powered exoskeleton assisted ...
(Date:9/20/2017)... , ... September 20, 2017 , ... ... and building management solutions, announced today the opening of an office in Taipei, ... and the Greater China region, while developing new relationships in the region. Located ...
(Date:9/19/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... September 19, 2017 , ... ... Philadelphia’s largest group of funded early-stage tech companies. “Grit” author Angela Duckworth and ... Also joining the ic@3401 community is Cooley, an international law firm with decades ...
Breaking Biology Technology: