Horned Dinosaur

Oldest horned dinosaur found, according to reports in ScienceDaily 11 May 2021 and SciTech Daily 14 May 2021 and PalZ, 10 May 2021, doi: 10.1007/s12542-021-00555-w.

Scientists in from the University of Pennsylvania and New Mexico Museum of Natural History have studied the fossil of a horned dinosaur originally found in 1966 in the Menefee Formation in north western New Mexico – a rock formation classified as Late Cretaceous.

The dinosaur is a ceratopsid, a group of plant easting dinosaurs with beaked snouts and bony frills and horns on their heads.  The most well-known ceratopsid is Triceratops, which has a large bony crest on the back of its head and three horns. 

The newly described dinosaur has been named Menefeeceratops sealeyi and is dated as being 82 million years old, making it the “earliest of its kind”.  Peter Dodson, one of the researchers from University of Pennsylvania, commented: “It is particularly exciting that this find so far south is significantly older than any previous ceratopsid discovery. It underscores the importance of the Menefee dinosaur fauna for the understanding of the evolution of Late Cretaceous dinosaur faunas throughout western North America.” 

The skeleton was incomplete but there were enough bones to show that it was a ceratopsid with a bony frill that had a distinct pattern of concave and convex parts.  The researchers estimate the dinosaur was 13ft to 15ft (4 to 4.6m) long.  They also found “a potential pathology, resulting from a minor injury or disease, on at least one of the vertebrae near the base of its spinal column.” 

Links: ScienceDaily, SciTech Daily 

Editorial Comment:  This is not the first time scientists have claimed to have found the oldest horned dinosaur.  See our report Oldest Triceratops here.  However, it doesn’t matter how old anyone claims their dinosaur is – it does not help “the understanding of the evolution” of dinosaurs.

This new find is simply more evidence that ceratopsid dinosaurs have always been ceratopsids, complete with all distinctive features, as well as no evidence they were ever any other kind of dinosaur.  It’s almost boring to have to say it, but the fossil record of ceratopsids shows they appeared as fully formed frilled and horned dinosaurs according to their kind, and multiplied after their kind until they died out. 

The finding of “potential pathology”, i.e. evidence of disease, is very significant because it tells us this dinosaur lived and died after God’s judgement on man’s sin brought death and disease into the world. 

Overall, this dinosaur is confirmation of the truth of Genesis, which tells us God created living things according to the kinds, but sadly many have died out because the world is going downhill and losing living thing, not evolving upwards.

Creation Research News 19 May 2021

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