Harrisburg University professor aids in new dinosaur discovery, naming

Harrisburg

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — A Harrisburg University professor was credited with his participation in a research team that has named and described a new horned dinosaur discovered in New Mexico, believed to have lived 82 million years ago.

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According to the university, Steven Jasinski, of Harrisburg University’s Department of Environmental Science and Sustainability, along with other researchers, have named the dinosaur species Menefeeceratops sealeyi.

The dinosaur was described as having a frilled head and beaked face, inhabiting the planet approximately 82 million years ago. The dino likely predated its famous relative, Triceratops, according to a paper Jasinski and his team recently published.

Menefeeceratops not only provides us more data on the variety of horned dinosaurs that were alive, but potentially, and more importantly, it represents the oldest known member of a group of dinosaurs known as the centrosaurine ceratopsids while further suggesting these dinosaurs evolved to the south, potentially in the southwestern United States, and later migrated farther north before giving rise to dinosaurs such as Styracosaurus,” Jasinski said.

The university added that the fossil specimen of the new species, including multiple bones from one individual, was originally discovered in Cretaceous rocks of the Menefee Formation in northwestern New Mexico in 1996. Paul Sealey, a research associate of the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science is credited for the discovery.

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