Name: Turanoceratops ‭(‬Turan horned face‭)‬.
Phonetic: Tu-ran-o-se-rah-tops.
Named By: L.‭ ‬A.‭ ‬Nessov,‭ ‬L.‭ ‬F.‭ ‬Kaznyshkina‭ & ‬G.‭ ‬O.‭ ‬Cherepanov‭ ‬-‭ ‬1989.
Classification: Chordata,‭ ‬Reptilia,‭ ‬Dinosauria,‭ ‬Ornithischia,‭ ‬Ceratopsoidea.
Species: T.‭ ‬tardabilis‭ (‬type‭)‬.
Diet: Herbivore.
Size: Estimated about‭ ‬2‭ ‬meters long.
Known locations: Uzbekistan‭ ‬-‭ ‬Bissekty Formation.
Time period: Turonian of the Cretaceous.
Fossil representation: Partial remains of several individuals.

       There is some confusion about Turanoceratops,‭ ‬given that we know that it was a ceratopsian dinosaur,‭ ‬but not all palaeontologists agree upon exactly what kind.‭ ‬Papers published by Sues and Averianov in‭ ‬2009‭ ‬support the idea that Turanoceratops was a transitional form that linked primitive ceratopsians of the Ceratopsoidea,‭ ‬with the more advanced ceratopsids‭ (‬think Triceratops,‭ ‬Styracosaurus,‭ ‬etc‭)‬.‭ ‬If correct then this would make Turanoceratops the first ceratopsid ceratopsian dinosaur known from Asia.
       A counter publication by Farke et al‭ (‬also published in‭ ‬2009‭)‬,‭ ‬was of the opinion that Turanoceratops was not a transitional form,‭ ‬but instead actually represented a sister group of ceratopsian dinosaurs,‭ ‬more distinct that primitive forms,‭ ‬yet distinct from ceratopsids.‭ ‬A second paper by Sues and Averimov refuted this,‭ ‬saying that the authors of the other paper were misidentifying the features seen on‭ ‬the‭ ‬Turanoceratops fossils.‭ ‬Then in‭ ‬2010‭ ‬a fourth paper was published by Xu et al which was of the opinion that Turanoceratops was more advanced than Zuniceratops‭ (‬a genus that represents the earliest known appearance of a horned dinosaur in North America‭)‬,‭ ‬yet was not advanced enough to be included within the Ceratopsidae.
       Classification issues aside,‭ ‬Turanoceratops was typical of early quadrupedal ceratopsian dinosaurs and at two meters long of a fairly small size.‭ ‬When compared to other genera,‭ ‬Turanoceratops is often credited as being similar to the aforementioned Zuniceratops.‭ ‬Turanoceratops would have lived in an ecosystem that also saw the presence of dinosaurs such as hadrosaurs,‭ ‬ankylosaurs,‬oviraptosaurs,‭ ‬ornithomimosaurs,‭ ‬troodonts and dromaeosaurs as well as other‭ ‬Mesozoic reptiles such as azhdarchid pterosaurs.

Further reading
-‭ [‬Mesozoic ceratopsian dinosaurs and crocodiles of central Asia‭]‬.‭ ‬In Bogdanova and Khozatskii‭ (‬eds.‭)‬,‭ ‬Theoretical and Applied Aspects of Modern Palaeontology‭ ‬144-154.‭ ‬-‭ L.‭ ‬A.‭ ‬Nessov,‭ ‬L.‭ ‬F.‭ ‬Kaznyshkina‭ & ‬G.‭ ‬O.‭ ‬Cherepanov‭ ‬-‭ ‬1989.
-‭ ‬Turanoceratops tardabilis—the first ceratopsid dinosaur from Asia.‭ ‬-‭ ‬Naturwissenschaften.‭ ‬-‭ ‬H.‭ ‬-D.‭ ‬Sues‭ & ‬A.‭ ‬Averianov‭ ‬-‭ ‬2009.
-‭ ‬Turanoceratops tardabilis—sister taxon,‭ ‬but not a ceratopsid.‭ ‬-‭ ‬Naturwissenschaften.‭ ‬A.‭ ‬Farke,‭ ‬S.‭ ‬D.‭ ‬Sampson,‭ ‬C.‭ ‬A.‭ ‬Forster‭ & ‬M.‭ ‬A.‭ ‬Lowen‭ ‬-‭ ‬2009.
-‭ ‬Phylogenetic position of Turanoceratops‭ (‬Dinosauria:‭ ‬Ceratopsia‭)‬.‭ ‬-‭ ‬Naturwissenschaften.‭ ‬-‭ ‬H.‭ ‬D.‭ ‬Sues‭ & ‬A.‭ ‬Averianov‭ ‬-‭ ‬2009.
-‭ ‬First ceratopsid dinosaur from China and its biogeographical implications.‭ ‬-‭ ‬Chinese Science Bulletin‭ ‬55‭(‬16‭)‬:1631-1635‭ ‬-‭ ‬X.‭ ‬Xu,‭ ‬K.‭ ‬-B Wang‭ & ‬D.‭ ‬-J.‭ ‬Li‭ ‬-‭ ‬2010.


Random favourites