Thursday, 7 August 2014

Fox-Sized Relative of Triceratops Discovered in Venezuela

By Charles Q. Choi, Live Science Contributor | August 05, 2014 07:01pm ET

The fossil of a new two-legged, fox-sized dinosaur relative of both Stegosaurus and Triceratops, which dates back about 200 million years, has been discovered in Venezuela. The find suggests that dinosaurs advanced quickly across the globe after a mass extinction claimed at least half of all species on Earth, researchers say.

This new fossil, the first named dinosaur unearthed from northern South America, also provides evidence that dinosaurs lived in herds early on in their evolution, and were able to dwell in regions previously thought too inhospitable for dinosaurs to survive.

The new dinosaur is named Laquintasaura venezuelae. Laquintasaurais Greek for "lizard of La Quinta," the rock formation where the reptile was discovered in the Andes, while venezuelae refers to the country of Venezuela, where the dinosaur was unearthed. [See Images of the Newfound Little Dinosaur]

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