Chasmosaurus Essay, Research Paper
E.P.I. Eng. 2/ Per. 1
Long before there were any people, millions of years ago, dinosaurs ruled the world. This was known as the Mesozoic Era, the “Age of Reptiles.” Three different periods made up the ?Age of Reptiles,? Triassic, Jurassic, and the Cretaceous Period.
Out of these three periods, it is my opinion that the Cretaceous was the most magnificent time of the dinosaurs.
The divide of the supercontinent Pangaea into separate continents was underway. The disjointing of Laurasia and Gondwana was concluded. In the first half of the Cretaceous, temperatures were warm, seasonality was low, and global sea levels were
high, meaning there was no polar ice. At the end of the Cretaceous, there were severe climate changes, lowered sea levels, and high
volcanic activity .
The Cretaceous period ended 65 million years ago with the extinction of the dinosaurs and many other forms of prehistoric life. This mass extinction was the second-most extensive in the history of the Earth.
The prime-time for dinosaurs was the Cretaceous period. Huge carnivores like T- rex appeared, as did the Ceratopsians and many others. There was a vast diversity in dinosaur species. Mammals were thriving, and flowering plants evolved and drastically transformed the landscape. Ceratopsians was a vast race of horned, frilled vegetarians. When I say the word Ceratopsians, the first dinosaur that comes to mind is probably Triceratops. It is true that Triceratops is a Ceratopsians but, not the one I want to talk about, I want to talk about Chasmosaur.
First let me tell you some quick facts about Chasmosaur. Chasmosaur was the earliest long-frill Ceratopsians. Chasmosaurus is one of the best known and the oldest horned dinosaurs. At the back of the head there is a long frill made from the skull bones, which have grown backward. The frill is longer than the skull itself, and it has large holes in it to make it weigh less. The frill covered the back of the neck, which could have been a soft place for T-rex to bite into. The strong neck muscles that Chasmosaur to hold up its heavy head would have been fixed to the frill. There were small horns over the eyes and one over the nose. Chasmosaur was named first by Lawrence Lambe, not its discoverer, Charles H. Sternberg.
Lets talk a little about the name Chasmosaur. The year is 1914, the place Alberta, Canada. Charles H. Sternberg discovers what could be a new dinosaur speices, and it is. Lawrence Lambe describes the dinosaur, it is a Ceratopsian, a long- frilled Ceratopsian, interesting. The frill was very long, longer than the skull itself, it had large opens in it, to make it weigh less. ?I have it,? Lambe probbaly said. We shall name it Chasmosaur. This first speices was named Chasmosuarus Belli. The word Chasmosaur means open-ing lizard, refering to the large openings in its frill. They named it Belli, meaning war-like. Together, the first Chasmosaur discovered was called War-like opening lizard. Chasmosuarus Belli is the most important species in its genus, the one against which other species are compared to see whether they belong to the genus. This is known as the type species.
Many species in this genus have been found, including:
C. belli (Lambe, 1902) [type species] – originally Monoclonius- from Alberta, Canada
C. canadensis (Lambe, 1902) – originally Monoclonius – from Alberta, Canada
C. mariscalensis Lehman, 1989- from Texas, USA
C. russelli Sternberg, 1940- with no brow horns – from Alberta, Canada
Let me go in to a little bit more detail about Chasmosaur?s structure. Chasmosaurus was a rhinoceros-like dinosaur, like most Ceratopsians. It was about 16-26 feet (5-8 m) long or an average of approximately 17 feet (5.2m). Chasmosaur weighed an average of about 3.5 tons (3220 kg). On its face it had three short horns along with a large bony plate projecting from the back of its skull or in short, a frill. One short, wide horn was on its snout above its bird-type beak and two backwards-facing brow horns were above its eyes. It had a large skull, four brawny legs with five hoof-like claws to hold up its hulking body with a short, pointed tail.
It ranged farther across North America than any other horned dinosaur we know.
Chasmosaurus is the oldest long-frilled dinosaur to be found. The frill is long with large fontanelles. It may have been used to protect itself; however, it is more likely that it was used for display to attract a mate. Chasmosaurus also had two medium sized horns above the eye sockets, and a small horn above the snout in some species. This plant-eater grew to be seventeen feet long and weighed four tons. Chasmosaurus lived during the end of the Cretaceous time period and was found in Alberta, Canada and New Mexico, United States.
Chasmosaur vs. Triceratops
Named for the large openings in its
A common, long-frilled ceratopsian. The
openings in the frill reduced its weight.
Ate twigs, branches and leaves, slicing its
food with its scissor-like teeth.
Lived towards the end of the Cretaceous
Period, about 73 million years ago. It
lived with dinosaurs such as
Corythosaurus and Albertosaurus.
Measured 16 feet long.
Weighed an estimated 2.5 tons, about
the same as 12 tigers.
Discovered in Alberta, Canada in 1914
by Charles H. Sternberg. Described and
named in 1914 by Lawrence Lambe.
Found in Alberta and Texas.
Paleontology, study of prehistoric animal and plant life through the analysis of fossil remains. The study of these remains enables scientists to trace the evolutionary history of extinct as well as living organisms (see Evolution). Paleontologists also play a major role in unraveling the mysteries of the earth’s rock strata (layers). Using detailed information on how fossils are distributed in these layers of rock, paleontologists help prepare accurate geologic maps, which are essential in the search for oil, water, and minerals. See Dating Methods.
Most people did not understand the true nature of fossils until the beginning of the 19th century, when the basic principles of modern geology were established. Since about 1500, scholars had engaged in a bitter controversy over the origin of fossils. One group held the modern view that fossils are the remains of prehistoric plants and animals. This group was opposed by another, which declared that fossils were either freaks of nature or creations of the devil. During the 18th century, many people believed that all fossils were relics of the great flood recorded in the Bible.
The quadrupedal ceratopsians, or horned dinosaurs, typically bore horns over the nose and eyes, and had a saddle-shaped bony frill that extended from the skull over the neck. These bony frills were well developed in the late Cretaceous Triceratops, a dinosaur which could reach lengths of up to 8 m (26 ft) and weights of more than 12 metric tons. The frill served two purposes: It protected the vulnerable neck, and it contained a network of blood vessels on its undersurface to radiate excess heat. Large accumulations of fossil bones suggest that ceratopsians lived in herds.
Dinosaurs at The Academy of Natural Sciences – Chasmosaurus belli (KAZ-moh-sore-us
BELL-eye) “War-like open lizard” Corythasaurus casuarius (ko-RITH-o-sore-us
kas-oo-WARE-ee-us) “Helmeted lizard like a cassowary” Chasmosaurus Named for the
large openings in its shield-like frill. A common, long.
? 1999 The Academy of Natural Sciences
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