Not Wuerhosaurus homheni

Here is one of the dorsal plates and dorsal vertebrae of the stegosaur formerly known as Wuerhosaurus. This was formally synonymised with Stegosaurus by Susie Maidment back in 2008 but this has barely got a mention in most places and it still goes under its old name most places on the web.

It is with only occasional shame that I remember just how rarely the ornithischians get a stint on the Musings (though they generally fare better than crocs to be honest) so here’s just a smidge on the stegosaurs with a few posts to follow on some of the other ornithiscian specimens at the IVPP. Stegosaurian dorsal vertebrae are easily recognised by their elongate neural arch (that’s the bit between the rounded centrum at the various zygopophyses and neural spine at the top). In this example it’s exceptionally clear as the whole things looks stretched out.

Also included is the truncated dorsal plate which is generally used to illustrate the animal with a characteristic profile. However, the surviving plate really looks broken rather than having a natural termination and thus the true extent and shape of the plate cannot really be determined. It’s a shame really as I really like that short-strips of plates look, but it’s very probably incorrect, though of course we won’t have a good idea of the true shape without a more complete specimen.

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5 Responses to “Not Wuerhosaurus homheni”


  1. 1 Abyssal 06/01/2010 at 1:39 am

    What was the title of that 2008 Maidment paper?

    • 2 David Hone 06/01/2010 at 9:19 am

      This is the one you are after. It was a Maidment et al., but as it was based on Susie’s PhD work, I tend to think of it as her paper alone (apologies to her co-authors).

      S. C. R. Maidment, D. B. Norman, P. M. Barrett and P. Upchurch. 2008. Systematics and phylogeny of Stegosauria (Dinosauria: Ornithischia). Journal of Systematic Palaeontology 6(4):367-407

  2. 3 Christopher Collinson 06/01/2010 at 5:53 am

    Why do the majority of Chinese specimens look as though they have been carved out of stone? Even the authentic material has this appearance.

    • 4 David Hone 06/01/2010 at 9:17 am

      I’ve never noticed that or thought of it before. I can’t see any obvious difference from these specimens and others I’ve seen in Germany, Mexico, the UK etc. that make these look less natural than others. Can you be a bit more specific?

  3. 5 Christopher Collinson 12/01/2010 at 10:47 am

    Im not sure I can be more specific, its just sort of a vague impression I get. Off hand, lack of obvious surface texturing makes that dorsal look strange.


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