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BAGACERATOPS

a bagaceratopsid ceratopsian dinosaur from the Late Cretaceous of Mongolia.
bagaceratops.png
Pronunciation: BAH-gah-SEH-ruh-tops
Meaning: Small horn face
Author/s: Maryanska and Osmólska (1975)
Synonyms: None known
First Discovery: Ömnögovi, Mongolia
Chart Position: 193

Bagaceratops rozhdestvensyi

Although appearing quite late in the fossil record, Bagaceratops was a bit primitive with its short, narrow and solid frill, low tooth count (only ten per jaw in adults), and a slender build typical of early ceratopsians. The largest skull ever found is only 17cm long (and the smallest just 47mm, with the eye socket accounting for half of that) and paleontologists thought it well within the realms of possibility that its fossils belonged to infant specimens of Protoceratops, itself a tiny ceratopsian. However, closer study revealed some unusual features such as an extra opening in its skull just behind the nostrils and the tiniest whiff of a snout horn. But no sooner had Bagaceratops been confirmed as a unique critter worthy of its own name than serial lumpers began assigning other dinosaurs to it.

Second only to Protoceratops in quantity of known remains, Bagaceratops has been discovered at Khulsan, Khermin Tsav and Bayan Mandahu—areas which have also yielded remains of Lamaceratops, Platyceratops, Graciliceratops and Magnirostris, and some experts suspect that the so-called unique features which set them all apart are merely age or gender related, or brought about by compressive forces during fossilisation. Of all the suggested synonyms, though, the most unlikely is Khulsan's Breviceratops ("Protoceratops kozlowskii") which is known only from juvenile fossils thought to belong to a critter some two meters in length, meaning it would have to shrink by half to become an adult Bagaceratops, and lose its premaxillary teeth.
(Rozhdestvensky's Small Horn Face)Etymology
Bagaceratops is derived from the Mongolian "baga" (small), and the Greek "ceras" (horn) and "ops" (face). The species epithet (or specific name), rozhdestvensyi, honors Russian paleontologist Anatoly Konstantinovich Rozhdestvensky.
Discovery
The first remains of Bagaceratops were discovered at "Khermeen Tsav I" in the Barun Goyot Formation, South-West of the Nemegt Basin, Ömnögovi, Mongolia, during Polish paleontological expeditions to the Gobi Desert between 1963 and 1971. The holotype (holotype ZPAL MgD-I/126) is a nearly complete skull and lower jaw.
Estimations
Timeline:
Era: Mesozoic
Epoch: Late Cretaceous
Stage: Santonian-Campanian
Age range: 86-71 mya
Stats:
Est. max. length: 0.9 meters
Est. max. hip height: 0.4 meters
Est. max. weight: 10 Kg
Diet: Herbivore
References
• T. Maryanska & H. Osmólska (1975) "Protoceratopsidae (dinosauria) of Asia". Palaeontologia Polonica 33: 133–182.
• Peter Dodson (1998) "The Horned Dinosaurs: A Natural History".
• Benton, Shishkin, Unwin & Kurochkin "The Age of Dinosaurs in Russia and Mongolia".
• P. J. Makovicky and M. A. Norell (2006) "Yamaceratops dorngobiensis, a new primitive ceratopsian from the Cretaceous of Mongolia". American Museum novitates, no. 3530.
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To cite this page:
Atkinson, L. "BAGACERATOPS :: from DinoChecker's dinosaur archive".
›. Web access: 25th Mar 2017.
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