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a plant-eating chasmosaurine ceratopsid dinosaur from the Late Cretaceous of North America.
Pronunciation: ned-o-SEH-ruh-tops
Meaning: Insufficient horn face
Author/s: Ukrainsky (2007)
Synonyms: Diceratus hatcheri (Mateus, 2008)
First Discovery: Wyoming, USA
Chart Position: 527

Nedoceratops hatcheri

Nedoceratops is often interpreted as a derogatory name because the "nedo" which prefixes the Greek "ceras" (horn) and "ops" (face) is a Russian slang term meaning poor or insufficient. Whilst not explicitly stated, perhaps the author had the latest-living ceratopsian in mind when he picked the name and intended it to mean "not quite at the Triceratops stage of evolution", referring to its pitiful nose horn. Nedoceratops is no stranger to confusion.

Nedoceratops was originally known as Diceratops, and apart from having just the two horns on its face (Di) it was remarkably similar to a dinosaur with three horns on its face (Tri). In fact, Diceratops was so Triceratops-like that when the first and only specimen was discovered in Wyoming in 1891 its missing nose-horn and punctured frill were brushed off as disease and/or severe battle damage, and it ended up as Triceratops (Diceratus) hatcheri (Lull, 1933), after killing off two of the paleontologists who had previously tried to make sense of it.

Close scrutiny of the type-skull with its almost vertically pointing brow horns, window (fenestrae)-lacking frill, and shorter face, convinced Forster that this was a stand alone species. Furthermore, she realised there was already a Diceratops, albeit a Hymenoptera (think stingy-bitey insects), that was named by the spookily similar Förster in 1868. Mateus came up with Diceratus as a replacement name in early March 2008, blissfully unaware that Ukrainsky had already coined Nedoceratops in a Russian journal in late December of the previous year, and following the letter of the ICZN "first name stands" law Nedoceratops wins.

Most herbivores don't get this much excitement during their entire life never mind death but it's not over yet. In 2010 Nick Longrich suggested Nedoceratops may be nothing more than a growth stage of Triceratops afterall, and Jack Horner agreed. However, like a armour-clad knight atop a fiery ceratopsian Andy Farke rode to the rescue in 2011, and not only found Nedoceratops to be a valid critter with many unique features but also fought for the honor of Torosaurus, plunging his mighty lance into the heart of Horner's theory that it was merely a growth stage of Triceratops too. Take that, Popinjay!
Nedoceratops (insufficient horned face) is derived from the Russian prefix "nedo" which denotes poor or insufficient, and the Greek "ceras" (horn) and "ops" (face).
The specific epithet, hatcheri, honors John Bell Hatcher who made the discovery.
Diceratops hatcheri (Lull, 1905)
Diceratus hatcheri (Mateus, 2008)
The only confirmed remains of Nedoceratops were discovered near Lightning Creek in the Lance Formation, Niobrara County, Wyoming, U.S.A, by John Bell Hatcher in 1891.
The Holotype (USNM 2412) is a skull.
Era: Mesozoic
Epoch: Late Cretaceous
Stage: Maastrichtian
Age range: 67-66 mya
Est. max. length: 7.6 meters
Est. max. hip height: 2.2 meters
Est. max. weight: 6 tons
Diet: Herbivore
• Hatcher J.B. (1904) "Two new Ceratopsia from the Laramie of Converse County, Wyoming".
The American Journal of Science, series 4 20(120):413-419.
• Lull R.S. (1933) "A revision of the Ceratopsia or horned dinosaurs".
• Forster C.A. (1996) "Species resolution in Triceratops: cladistic and morphometric approaches".
• Ukrainsky A.S. (2007) "A New Replacement Name for Diceratops Lull, 1905 (Reptilia: Ornithischia: Ceratopsidae)". Zoosyst. Ross. 16 (2), 292 (2007).
• Mateus O. (2008) "Two Ornithischian Dinosaurs Renamed: Microceratops Bohlin, 1953 and Diceratops Lull, 1905". J. Paleontol. 82 (2), 423 (2008).
• Ukrainsky A.S. (2009) "Synonymy of the genera Nedoceratops Ukrainsky, 2007 and Diceratus Mateus, 2008 (Reptilia: Ornithischia: Ceratopidae)". Paleontological Journal, Vol.43, No.1, P. 116.
• Scannella J.B. and Horner J.R. (2011) "Nedoceratops: An Example of a Transitional Morphology".
• Farke A.A. (2011) "Anatomy and taxonomic status of the chasmosaurine ceratopsid Nedoceratops hatcheri from the Upper Cretaceous Lance Formation of Wyoming, U.S.A.".
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To cite this page:
Atkinson, L. "NEDOCERATOPS :: from DinoChecker's dinosaur archive".
›. Web access: 17th Jan 2018.