(Little shielded lizard).
Named By: Edwin Harris Colbert - 1981.
Classification: Chordata, Reptilia, Dinosauria, Ornithischia, Thyreophora.
Species: S. lawleri (type).
Size: 1.2 meters long.
Known locations: USA - Arizona - Kayenta Formation.
Time period: Sinemurian to Pliensbachian of the Jurassic.
Fossil representation: Remains of at least two individuals.
was a relatively small ornithischian dinosaur that may have been
primarily bipedal, though still having fore limbs developed enough
for providing quadrupedal support for activities such as feeding.
Scutellosaurus also had a covering of armoured
scutes along its back
that provided flexible yet tough armour to give some defence against
the teeth and claws of predators. This armour combined with the
ornithishcian hip arrangement identifies Scutellosaurus
as one of the
first thyreophoran dinosaurs, better known as the armoured
dinosaurs. Future descendants of primitive thyreophoran dinosaurs
like Scutellosaurus would go on to produce popular
Scutellosaurus is one of a growing number of dinosaur genera discovered in the Kayenta Formation, with two genera of particular note being Megapnosaurus and Dilophosaurus, both possible predators of Scutellosaurus.
- A primitive ornithischian dinosaur from the Kayenta Formation of Arizona. - Museum of Northern Arizona Bulletin 53:1-61 - E. H. Colbert - 1981.