Sinocephale

Name: Sinocephale ‭(‬Chinese head‭)‬.
Phonetic: Sy-no-sef-ah-lay.
Named By: David C.‭ ‬Evans,‭ ‬Caleb M.‭ ‬Brown,‭ ‬Hailu You‭ & ‬Nicolás E.‭ ‬Campione‭ ‬-‭ ‬2021.
Synonyms: Stegoceras bexelli,‭ ‬Troodon bexelli..
Classification: Chordata,‭ ‬Dinosauria,‭ ‬Ornithischia,‭ ‬Pachycephalosauria,‭ ‬Pachycephalosauridae,‭ ‬Pachycephalosaurinae.
Species: S.‭ ‬bexelli‭ (‬type‭)‬.
Diet: Herbivore.
Size: Uncertain due to lack of remains.
Known locations: China,‭ ‬Inner Mongolia‭ ‬-‭ ‬Ulansuhai Formation‭?
Time period: Late Cretaceous.
Fossil representation: Partial remains including plaster casts of original fossils now lost.




       Sinocephale fossils originally started as being assigned as a species of Troodon‭ ‬back in‭ ‬1953‭ ‬when similarity between the teeth of Troodon and other pachycephalosaurs.‭ ‬When the pachycephalosaurs and troodonts were realised to be very different kinds of dinosaurs,‭ ‬material of Sinocephale was then associated with the pachycephalosaur Stegoceras in‭ ‬1964.‭ ‬The validity of these fossils belonging to Stegoceras was repeatedly called into question over the remainder of the twentieth century,‭ ‬but things were not easy because the original holotype was lost after it was returned to China.‭ ‬Fortunately however that was not the end of the story.‭ ‬Plaster casts of the original holotype fossil were made before it was sent back to China,‭ ‬and upon the rediscovery of the plaster casts a new study could finally be made.‭ ‬In‭ ‬2021‭ ‬the fossils casts were used to identify a new genus,‭ ‬Sinocephale.
       As mentioned above Sinocephale is a genus of pachycephalosaurid dinosaur that lived in south-east Asia during the late Cretaceous.‭ ‬There is a question mark over to the exact time that Sinocephale lived,‭ ‬due mostly to the uncertain nature of Ulansuhai Formation which‭ has been interpreted as being of varying ages by many different authors.‭ ‬The describing authors of Sinocephale in‭ ‬2021‭ ‬however considered the Ulansuhai Formation to be before the Cenomanian period,‭ ‬maybe the Turonian period.‭ ‬If this is correct,‭ ‬then Sinocephale at the time of the genus description‭ ‬is‭ ‬maybe the oldest pachycephalosaurid dinosaur known.
       Sinocephale like other pachycephalosaurs was a herbivore and a browser of low growing vegetation.‭ ‬Sinocephale would have also had a dome shaped skull though much of this part is still missing,‭ ‬even from the plaster casts which only copied the available skull material originally available.‭ ‬However the back of‭ ‬the parietal bone did seem to have a recessed groove which would mean that the head of this Sinocephale would have been roughly heart shaped when viewed from above.‭

Further reading
-‭ ‬Fossil reptiles from Mongolia and Kansu.‭ ‬Reports from the Scientific Expedition to the North-western Provinces of China under Leadership of Dr.‭ ‬Sven Hedin.‭ ‬-‭ ‬VI.‭ ‬Vertebrate Palaeontology‭ ‬6.‭ ‬The Sino-Swedish Expedition Publication.‭ ‬37:1‭–‬113.‭ ‬-‭ ‬B.‭ ‬Bohlin‭ ‬-‭ ‬1953.
-‭ ‬Fossilium Catalogus I:‭ ‬Animalia Pars‭ ‬105.‭ ‬Ornithischia‭ (‬Supplementum I‭)‬,‭ ‬IJsel Pers,‭ ‬Deventer,‭ ‬80‭ ‬pp.‭ ‬-‭ ‬O.‭ ‬Kuhn‭ ‬-‭ ‬1964.
- Description and revised diagnosis of Asia's first recorded pachycephalosaurid,‭ ‬Sinocephale bexelli gen.‭ ‬nov.,‭ ‬from the Upper Cretaceous of Inner Mongolia,‭ ‬China.‭ ‬-‭ ‬Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences.‭ ‬e–First‭ (‬10‭)‬:‭ ‬981‭–‬992.‭ ‬-‭ ‬David C.‭ ‬Evans,‭ ‬Caleb M.‭ ‬Brown,‭ ‬Hailu You‭ & ‬Nicolás E.‭ ‬Campione‭ ‬-‭ ‬2021.



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