New Dinosaur Species Called Ava Discovered

Posted: Sep 18 2015, 8:21am CDT | by , in News | Latest Science News

New Dinosaur Species Called Ava Discovered
Complete replica of new triceratops-relative "Ava" found in Montana. Credit: Rocky Mountain Dinosaur Resource Center in Woodland Park
  • New Infant Dinosaur Bones found in Montana

A new species of infant dinosaur’s bones seem to have been found in Montana. Termed Ava, the little reptilian is a relative of the species known as Triceratops.

Novel fossils and bones of ancient species are a regular fixture among the groups of paleontologists today. However, it is a rare occurrence when a completely new species has its bones unearthed.

Such is the case of Ava, whose bones were discovered in the Judith River Formation in Montana. That was three years ago. It is once in a blue moon that such a new species is chanced upon. The fossil record is accessed in the fashion of a lottery.

"I've been in this business for 30 years and once every couple years, we discover something new and special," Michael Triebold, President, Triebold Paleontology, Inc. and founder of the Rocky Mountain Dinosaur Resource Center told CBS News. "This is really special."

This find is indeed a precious one. The diminutive Triceratops-like dinosaur was almost exhumed in its entirety. It even had some of the flesh on its hipbone intact although in a mummified manner. And while some of its dental structure resembles the carnivorous terrible lizard known as T-Rex, it was no scavenger.

After being found, laser scanners and 3D printers were employed to complete the few missing links in its bones. Now finally a complete model of it lies in the museum for all to gaze at in wonderment.

The dinosaur is adorable and charming to say the least. It looks like a baby Triceratops and has the head horns without a nose projection. This is what essentially differentiates it from an ordinary run-of-the-mill Triceratops.

After a great deal of similarity was found between this baby monster and another relative of the Triceratops, called Avaceratops, it was just named Ava. The bones go back some 75 million years in the prehistoric past. That must have been the Campanian Stage of the Late Cretaceous Period. The critter was just 3 to 4 years old when it succumbed to the forces of mortality.

There is no other dinosaur known to be exactly like Ava. It is unique and singular in its skeletal features and physiognomy. After the experts were sure that they were not dealing with a hoax, they proudly named the diminutive creature Ava and decided to call it a day.

A smaller model of the interesting dinosaur was unveiled in Colorado. It will be attracting quite a crowd of eager spectators. The Woodland Park paleontology team knows that hard work yields its profit.

This novel herbivore among dinosaurs is a star attraction of the institute. Almost 30% of its body consists of its tail (now that is pretty long). It was a relief that nearly 85% of the bones of this baby dinosaur were recovered from the subterranean depths.

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