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New Dinosaur Species, Scientists Say of Nearly Perfect Fossil

Image: New Dinosaur Species, Scientists Say of Nearly Perfect Fossil
A fossil found in 2011 is officially a new species of dinosaur, which scientists named Borealopelta markmitchelli. (Wikimedia Commons)

By    |   Thursday, 03 Aug 2017 05:54 PM

Scientists have announced a well-preserved dinosaur fossil found in 2011 is in fact a new species, and they have named it Borealopelta markmitchelli.

The fossil is believed to be 110 million years old and was remarkably well preserved because the dinosaur died in a river and was preserved in the muddy riverbed.

The nodosaur from the Cretaceous period was a plant-eater that had armor down its back to protect itself from predators. The specimen was so well preserved that researchers were able to tell that its armor was reddish-orange, National Geographic reported.

The fossilized dinoaur was discovered in 2011 during an oil exploration, and it took 7,000 hours over nearly six years for the entire skeleton to be extracted from the surrounding rock.

The 18-foot-long Borealopelta markmitchelli, named after the man who chipped away all that rock, is now on display at the Royal Tyrell Museum of Paleontology. Researchers say it is one of the best-preserved fossils in the world and they are continuing to analyze parts of it, such as the preserved gut contents, to see what its last meal might have been.

“This remarkable specimen illustrates just how unique and important the fossil record of Alberta is, and highlights the mandate of the museum in the research, preservation, and education of these amazing resources,” Royal Tyrrell Museum Executive Director Andrew Neuman said, Science Daily reported.

Twitter users exclaimed over the great fossil specimen and the work of the researchers.

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Scientists have announced a well-preserved dinosaur fossil found in 2011 is in fact a new species, and they have named it Borealopelta markmitchelli.
new, dinosaur, species, fossil
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2017-54-03
Thursday, 03 Aug 2017 05:54 PM
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