Named By: Takumi Nagao - 1936.
Classification: Chordata, Reptilia, Dinosauria, Ornithischia, Ornithopoda, Hadrosauridae, Lambeosaurinae.
Species: N. sachalinensis (type).
Size: Around four meters long, though possibly slightly larger when fully grown.
Known locations: Russia, Sakhalin.
Time period: Santonian to early Campanian of the Cretaceous.
Fossil representation: Partial post cranial remains and skull elements of a subadult.
is classed as a lambeosaurine hadrosaurid
because of the hollow head
crest that rises up from the top of the snout, though the incomplete
nature of the known remains makes it hard to establish fine details,
and reconstructions are usually completed with comparisons to other
better preserved genera. Also, because the fossils assigned to the
holotype of Nipponosaurus are those of a sub
adult, it’s possible
that the crest may have still had some way to develop to what it would
have been in a fully mature individual. Among other lambeosaurine
dinosaurs, the North American Hypacrosaurus
is thought to be one of
the closest relatives of Nipponosaurus.
Although the name Nipponosaurus means ‘Japanese lizard’, the holotype remains of this dinosaur were actually found upon the North Pacific Island of Sakhalin. Remains of Nipponosaurus were recovered from here between 1934 and 1937 when the southern portion of this island was under Japanese rule (as the Karafuto Prefecture) until 1945 when it was annexed by the Soviet Union as part of the Yalta Conference agreements. Today southern Sakhalin remains part of Russia.
Dinosaurs that actually come from Japan include Fukuisaurus and the predatory Fukuiraptor, both from the Fukui Prefecture of Honshu Island.
- Nipponosaurus sachalinensis - A new genus and species of trachodont dinosaur from Japanese Saghalien, T. Nagao - 1936.
- On the limb bones of Nipponosaurus sachaliensis Nagao, a Japanese hadrosaurian dinosaur, T. Nagao - 1938.
- Nippponosaurus sachalinensis (Dinosauria; Ornithopoda): anatomy and systematic position within Hadrosauridae, D. Suzuki, D. B. Weishampel & N. Minoura - 2004.