Scientists have discovered a new dinosaur fossil that looks like an armored T-Rex. These fossils were found in Argentina’s Candeleros Formation. Scientists have named this new dinosaur Jakapil kaniukura, and they say it belongs to the thyreophorans group, the same group that houses the armored stegosaurus and ankylosaurus.
Scientists uncovered a new armored dinosaur unlike anything we’ve ever seen
J. kaniukura may look like an armored T-Rex in some regards, but this armored dinosaur is actually a herbivore. And, despite its close resemblance to carnivores and a body make-up more likely to be found in carnivores, it was more like the stegosaurus in that it relied on vegetation and only used its armor for it protection.
Further, despite being an herbivore, the J. kaniukura also has small arms, like those seen on the T-Rex and the Meraxes gigas. Yet another reason that many have drawn conclusions and connections between the two. Researchers say the T-Rex and the armored dinosaur lived in very different ecological niches and environments.
No matter what the reason, J. Kaniukura’s discovery is amazing. Thyreophoran dinosaurs first appeared over 200 million years ago. And, for a while, many believed that the bipedal form of these dinosaurs was lost in favor of the much larger and lumbering four-footed tanks like the stegosaurus and ankylosaurs. This armored dinosaur shows that this is not the case.
Instead, J. kaniukura is believed to have been roughly the size of a house cat, maybe a little larger. This makes it very small compared to other armored dinosaurs we know about. And the possibility of more dinosaurs that size walking on two legs and having armor on their bodies is also likely.
The fossil record shows a wide gap because of how long it took for the Jurassic twolegged ancestors to the Thyreophoran dinosaurs to reach the well-known stegosaurus type. Hopefully, more evidence of these bipedal armored dinosaurs will be found in future digs.
For now, the scientists say they want to continue looking for more connections within the Thyreophoran family. They hope to find these connections in South Ameirca as well as Africa. They recently published a paper in the journal Scientific Reports, describing the new armored dinosaur in great detail.
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