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CHAOYANGSAURUS

a plant-eating chaoyangsaurid ceratopsian dinosaur from the Late Jurassic of China.
chaoyangsaurus.png
Pronunciation: chow-yahng-SOR-us
Meaning: Chaoyang lizard
Author/s: Zhao, Cheng, Xu (1999)
Synonyms: None known
First Discovery: Liaoning, China
Chart Position: 372

Chaoyangsaurus youngi

Found in the Chaoyang area of Liaoning Province, northeastern China, Chaoyangsaurus caught paleontologists completely off guard. Up until this point the only known ceratopsians hailed from the Cretaceous period but Chaoyangsaurus was from the Jurassic and as such its features were pretty primitive.

Placed in Chaoyangsauridae along with Xuanhuaceratops, a hidden dragon (Yinlong) and what was previously thought to be a head-banger (Micropachycephalosaurus), Chaoyangsaurus had the tiniest frill and a hornless beaked face. At only 60cm long, the largest part of it is the list of misspellings attached to its name.

Chaoyangsaurus had been discussed by a number of sources before an official publication, beginning with "Chaoyoungosaurus" - a transliteration issue in a guidebook accompanying a Japanese museum exhibit. Unfortunately, this is what Zhou based his write-ups upon so he got the name wrong too... twice, the second time adding the species name "liaosiensis".

With the Chaoyang area facing the prospect of being lumbered with a mispelled dinosaur, Zhou's legendary papers mysteriously disappeared. Dong sought to put things right in 1992 and amended the name to "Chaoyangosaurus" - correctly replacing the previous 'ou' with 'a' but wrongly added an extra "o". Again, no formal description of the dinosaur was attached so again the dinosaur was a nomen nudum and, according to the laws of paleontology, it still didn't officially exist.

It wasn't until December 1999 that the combined efforts of Cheng, Zhao, and Xu managed to put together an official description that ticked all of the relevant boxes as they coined Chaoyangsaurus youngi in honor of C. C. Young, one of the few Chinese paleontologists not involved in the whole naming debacle.
(Young's Chaoyang lizard)Etymology
Chaoyangsaurus is derived from "Chaoyang" (its place of discovery) and the Greek "sauros" (lizard). The species epithet, youngi, honours Chinese paleontologist C. C. Young.
Discovery
The remains of Chaoyangsaurus were discovered at Ershijiazi, Chaoyang, in the Tuchengzi Formation, Liaoning Province, China.
The holotype (IGCAGS V371) includes a partial skull and fragmentary partial skeleton.
Estimations
Timeline:
Era: Mesozoic
Epoch: Late Jurassic
Stage: Tithonian-Valanginian
Age range: 151-136 mya
Stats:
Est. max. length: 0.6 meters
Est. max. hip height: ?
Est. max. weight: 10 Kg
Diet: Herbivore
References
• X.Zhao, Z.Cheng and X. Xu (1999) "The earliest ceratopsian from the Tuchengzi Formation of Liaoning, China." Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology.
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To cite this page:
Atkinson, L. "CHAOYANGSAURUS :: from DinoChecker's dinosaur archive".
›. Web access: 25th Sep 2017.
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