A gigantic skull and skeleton of the horned dinosaur Pentaceratops sternbergi from New Mexico

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Abstract

All exceptionally large skeleton of Pentaceratops sternbergi (Ornithischia:Ceratopsia) provides for the first time an accurate impression of the body proportions in this horned dinosaur. This is the only known specimen with a skull associated with most of the postcranial skeleton. The restored skull is nearly three meters in length and is thus the largest of any ceratopsian and the largest skull thus far known in any terrestrial vertebrate. The elongate rostrum, elaborate premaxillary structure, and complex frontal and cornual sinuses demonstrate a high level of intraspecific variability in these features. Such features are therefore likely not useful in providing species-level discrimination in other chasmosaurines. The function of the intricate chasmosaurine premaxillary narial structures is probably associated with an advanced level of herbivory.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)894-906
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Paleontology
Volume72
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 1998

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