ARIZONA NEWS

Arizona volunteers unearth 75-million-year-old dinosaur in New Mexico

Apr 14, 2021, 4:05 AM | Updated: 8:34 am

 

PHOENIX – The earliest known brachylophosaur has been discovered in New Mexico by volunteers and citizen scientists of Mesa’s Arizona Museum of Natural History.

The large, plant-eating dinosaur Ornatops incantatus is the first brachylophosaurin reported in the state and dates back approximately 78 million-84 million years ago, according to paleontologists who described the new creature.

Derek Hoffman, a member of Southwest Paleontological Society, and Sherman Mohler, the president of SPS, made the thrilling discovery.

SPS is a partner organization of AzMNH, whose citizen scientists are also volunteers of the museum.

“Derek and I were fortunate that Doug Wolfe and Dr. Andrew McDonald had dropped the SPS team into a fossil rich location, but of course most of what you usually find are bits and scraps,” Mohler said in a press release.

However, volunteers made the rare discovery of cranial material, helping paleontologists to identify the dinosaur had a crest on the bridge of its nose and was duck-billed. Ornatops incantatus means “enchanted ornate face.”

“Citizen science is an incredible benefit to organizations like ours,” Alison Stoltman, acting director of the museum, said in the release. “Enthusiasts with likeminded interests, and a variety of expertise to achieve things that we could not conceive of otherwise.”

The newly discovered dinosaur would’ve been one of the largest in its habitat and a major component of its ecosystem, according to Dr. Andrew McDonald, Western Science Center curator.

“Our ongoing work seeks to understand that ecosystem, how it changed through time, and how it slots into the rich and majestic history of dinosaur evolution in North America,” McDonald said in the release.

The field research involved a collaboration of the Western Science Center, Zuni Dinosaur Institute for Geosciences and SPS, according to the release.

“As a citizen, not much of a scientist, I’m in awe to help in any small way to bring to life our planets’ past history,” Nancy Ebbinghaus, SPS member said in the release.

Lifetime Windows & Doors

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(Twitter Photo/@ArizonaDOT)...
KTAR.com

Weekend wrap-up: Here are the biggest Arizona stories from Aug. 12-14

Here are some of the biggest stories that headlined the Arizona news cycle over the weekend.
20 hours ago
(Pixabay Photo)...
KTAR.com

1 dead, 5 injured in shooting after fight breaks out in Phoenix home

A man died and five other people were injured after a suspect shot into a crowd of people fighting inside a Phoenix home, authorities said.
20 hours ago
(Facebook Photo/FBI Phoenix Division)...
KTAR.com

Armed Trump supporters protest in front of FBI Phoenix office

A group of supporters of former President Donald Trump armed themselves and gathered at the FBI office in Phoenix on Saturday to protest the recent search of his Mar-a-Lago home.
20 hours ago
...
SuElen Rivera

Navajo Code Talker commemorates national holiday at Arizona memorial

Code Talker Thomas H. Begay and others commemorated Navajo Code Talkers Day on Sunday morning in Phoenix, honoring their contributions that have been credited with helping the United States win World War II.
20 hours ago
(Facebook Photo/Phoenix Children's)...
KTAR.com

KTAR, Arizona Sports host annual fundraiser for Phoenix Children’s

Phoenix Children’s treated more than 155,000 patients last year. It costs nearly $2.7 million per day to operate the hospital. Phoenix Children's needs your help to continue its lifesaving work.
20 hours ago
Ernie's Liquors owner Joseph Johny hands over a Mega Millions lottery ticket to a customer in Palo ...
KTAR.com

Lottery ticket sold in Glendale hits jackpot for $285K

A lucky lottery player hit the Arizona Lottery's Triple Twist Jackpot Thursday in Glendale to win $285,500.
20 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Sanderson Ford

Don’t let rising fuel prices stop you from traveling Arizona this summer

There's no better time to get out on the open road and see what the beautiful state of Arizona has to offer. But if the cost of gas is putting a cloud over your summer vacation plans, let Sanderson Ford help with their wide-range selection of electric vehicles.
...
Dr. Richard Carmona

Great news: Children under 5 can now get COVID-19 vaccine

After more than two years of battle with an invisible killer, we can now vaccinate the youngest among us against COVID-19. This is great news.
...
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Vaccines are safe if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

Are you pregnant? Do you have a friend or loved one who’s expecting?
Arizona volunteers unearth 75-million-year-old dinosaur in New Mexico