September 22nd, 2010
11:45 PM ET

Scientists find new dinosaurs related to Triceratops

Utahceratops gettyi was found in Utah's Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument.

Fossils of two new species of horned dinosaurs closely related to the Triceratops have been discovered in southern Utah, scientists revealed Wednesday.

The discovery of the new plant-eating species, which are believed to have areas known today as the western United States during the Late Cretaceous Period, was announced Wednesday in the online open-access journal PLoS ONE, produced by the Public Library of Science.

The bigger of the two new dinosaurs, with a skull about 7 feet long, is Utahceratops gettyi, whose name combines the state of origin with ceratops, Greek for “horned face.” The second part of the name honors Mike Getty, paleontology collections manager at the Utah Museum of Natural History and the discoverer of this animal.

Kosmoceratops richardsoni

With 31 skull "ornamentations," including 15 horns, Kosmoceratops richardsoni takes its name from the Latin word for "ornate." Its horns - located over the nose, atop each eye, at the tip of each cheek bone, and ten across the rear margin of the bony frill—make it the most ornate-headed dinosaur known. The latter part of the name honors Scott Richardson, the volunteer who discovered two skulls of this animal. 

The newly discovered dinosaurs were inhabitants of the “lost continent” of Laramidia, the western portion of North America that formed when a shallow sea flooded the central region, isolating the eastern and western portions of the continent for millions of years during the Late Cretaceous Period.

Utahceratops and Kosmoceratops are the two latest species to be unearthed in Utah's Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, which is proving to be a "treasure trove" for palenotologists in the new millenium, Mark Loewenof the Utah Museum of Natural History said.

Most of the dinosaurs that fill the North America's museums come from Alberta, Canada, but with most of the region thoroughly picked over, more and more new discoveries are coming out of southern North America.

"Every dinosaur we're finding is related to others we've already seen but a completely new species," said Loewen, a paleontologist who participated in the study. "We have to change our views on why they were living in the same time slice, but completely different from those living in Canada."

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Filed under: Animals • Utah
soundoff (147 Responses)
  1. Numbaoneballa

    Betty white?

    September 22, 2010 at 11:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • The Emperor Franz Joseph

      this is how dinosaurs died...

      September 23, 2010 at 2:55 am | Report abuse |
    • slickster

      No, not so much Betty White were close .......more like Nancy Pelosi I would say.

      September 23, 2010 at 3:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Steven

      Her 15 minutes of fame were over 450,000,000 years ago.

      September 23, 2010 at 9:48 am | Report abuse |
  2. Maryellen

    What a wonderful find!!! In May, when Dr. Getty led the "dino dig 101" field class in Escalante, I took his picture because one day he would be famous. He was so humble and said that leading these classes was as much of an achievement as he would anticipate. Congratulations, Mike and Scott – and to all the crew who excavated!

    September 23, 2010 at 12:14 am | Report abuse |
    • kerry

      Nice post, Maryellen. This is a great article... I love knowing there are strange and fabulous creatures out there still waiting to be discovered (dead or alive!). Some we'll probably never know.

      September 23, 2010 at 1:53 am | Report abuse |
  3. Ryan

    Yes! I love dinosaurs! This one looks fun

    September 23, 2010 at 12:36 am | Report abuse |
  4. Jim Brieske

    I know there are thousands and thousands of planets just like Earth. Same everything, water, air, plants, animals, fish, trees, everything. Many with intelligent beings. Many are much older. Meaning their technology has advanced further. There is one problem. It's a very scary one.
    Those much more advanced older planets didn't have their dinasaurs wiped out by an asteroid impact like on Earth. That's an event that falls into the unique to each individual Earth-like planet category.
    In other words, the beings who are flying around our planet in UFOs evolved from dinasaurs. I hope they are God's employees and I am wrong. But seeing the dinasaur fossils here, tells me they must have survived on another planet.
    They are huge.

    September 23, 2010 at 1:01 am | Report abuse |
    • Trash

      You are a nutter.

      September 23, 2010 at 1:15 am | Report abuse |
    • Andrew

      Wait... what?

      And here I thought creationists were insane. Well, they still are, but you're giving them a run for their money. You know we still have the descendants of the dinosaurs living today, they're called "birds", you might have seen one or two before.

      September 23, 2010 at 1:16 am | Report abuse |
    • Diggs Biggs

      This is the greatest post I have ever read. Thank you!

      September 23, 2010 at 1:19 am | Report abuse |
    • MedicalStudent

      Either you're trying to be funny and in that case I tip my hat to you and say bravo, you've made the most epic post I have ever read.

      If not, then let me shed some light on why your post is funny.

      Other planets would not have evolved in the same way as ours. Mutations are random, resources are different on other planets, and therefore selective pressure is different. you would see an entirely different set of organisms. Likely most of the planets with life never even evolved multicellular organisms since the initial event that allowed that to even be possible (the symbiosis of a prokaryote with another single celled organism to evolve into the modern day eukaryotic cell with a mitochondria) is likely a very very rare event.

      Also, dinosaurs were likely unsustainable in their largest forms. Large animals need large amounts of energy to maintain themselves, and likewise they consume a larger amount of resources. as resources become scarce you have selective pressure favoring smaller organisms.

      I hope I didn't totally kill your joke if it was a joke, or that I helped explain why your post is funny if it was not a joke

      September 23, 2010 at 1:29 am | Report abuse |
    • Dale

      Star Trek Voyager already did the evolved dinosaur episode.

      September 23, 2010 at 1:32 am | Report abuse |
    • steve5150

      Jim I think your right! There simply is no other theory that would account for the known facts. Thank you for your contribution to the discussion.

      September 23, 2010 at 1:33 am | Report abuse |
    • Onevision

      Did anyone just picture a raptor in a space suit flying around in a ufo, or was it just me?

      September 23, 2010 at 1:39 am | Report abuse |
    • Andrew

      No Onevision, I did not, but that is now my new favorite mental image.

      September 23, 2010 at 1:42 am | Report abuse |
    • Bill Yunyears

      Jim, I'm with Diggs Biggs...your post is solid dude! One of the best I've read.

      September 23, 2010 at 2:47 am | Report abuse |
    • GeoGuy

      If posts were to be judge by the number of reply's they get then you win. If they are rated by comic relief content, you win again.

      September 23, 2010 at 3:56 am | Report abuse |
    • Codifex Maximus

      Well, according to the "Many Worlds Theory" of Quantum Physics, you may be right, right, right, wrong and wrong.

      September 23, 2010 at 4:26 am | Report abuse |
    • JenniPoohBear

      This has got to be the single most hilarious post I have EVER read. Not only that, but every post that followed had me in tears of laughter. Thank you so much, because I really needed this after the day I've had. 😀

      September 23, 2010 at 4:29 am | Report abuse |
    • Cavs92

      Ahhh. The great scientific question...what if the dinosaurs got 'smart'?

      They didn't. How do we know? Because we can track their fossils for millions of years and find still very small brain mass to body ratios. And if they were to develop such technology we also would have seen it. But we didn't. There are no 'dino cities' that we have uneartherd. Importantly, there was no evolutionary survival pressure to do so. They were already the most successful animals on the planet without developing technology and so there would have been no selective pressure to do so.

      And so your post is amusing. But to think a species develops significant intelligence because it has existed a long time is nonsense. That is not what evolutionary theory says and it is not what we observe. Sharks have been around for millions of years and remain largely unchanged. They did not get 'get smart'. They were and continue to be as well adapted to their environment as a species could be. But they do no blog on internet posts. All evolution cares about is that your species and most of its members make it to reproductive age.

      September 23, 2010 at 4:32 am | Report abuse |
    • Carl Cox

      Very interesting idea Jim! And very possible. With the billion upon billions of stars and planets out there, it only reasons that the Dinos may have evolved further. Our seemingly unique collection of elements, moon, and so forth is probably replicated countless times. No one can say you're wrong without 1st person exploration!!

      September 23, 2010 at 6:46 am | Report abuse |
    • tct

      They wouldn't be able to clean the bottom of their spaceship, we'd all die when they open the airlock.

      September 23, 2010 at 6:57 am | Report abuse |
    • Enzo

      Sweet. As Medical Marijuana becomes more popular, we are going to be treated to more and more of these fabulous theories. I, for one, look forward to it.

      September 23, 2010 at 8:00 am | Report abuse |
    • Amyint

      :/ Well...there goes my plan of doin it with an alien. Dino-hide would chaffe my...nevermind

      September 23, 2010 at 8:54 am | Report abuse |
    • Jimbo

      This is the only way I can respond: enjoy!

      If we take the Bible at face value and that it is the Word of God, this is the only conclusion we can reach. As we have learned from the Bible, Satan and his fallen angels were banished from the heavens (space) and confined to the earth. This followed a devastating space war. God's holy angels are using the planet earth as a giant "prisoner of war" camp and detaining Satan and his fallen angels from once again getting back out into space.

      September 23, 2010 at 9:17 am | Report abuse |
    • theultimate117

      I love the responses of people who are trying to rationalize with this post (MedicalStudent, Cavs92). We get it. You took a biology class. We're all very impressed. If this is a joke, just laugh at it. On the other hand, if this person is seriously that crazy, do you really think trying to explain evolution to them is going to help?

      September 23, 2010 at 9:36 am | Report abuse |
    • avdrdr

      Actually, Harry Turtledove already created a series of books called World War that has an intelligent race of "lizards". A fun read. Great sci fi and he is the best alternate history author I've ever read.

      September 23, 2010 at 9:50 am | Report abuse |
    • JimBrieske

      I wasn't kidding

      September 23, 2010 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Lawyer

      Okay, this is why I am not static...
      "Houston, this is T-Rex requesting clearance to land at Kennedy, over."
      "T-Rex, this is Houston, we have you on radar. Clearance granted for landing at runway Gamma 434."
      "Uh, Houston, I have a problem..."
      "What is it T-Rex"
      "Landing at runway Gamma 434 would require me to manuever my craft to the left slightly and uh, I can't reach the controls."
      "T-Rex, you do have a problem then...."

      September 23, 2010 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
    • Jhutch42

      Awesome.. TREX in a space ship!!!!!

      September 23, 2010 at 10:56 am | Report abuse |
    • JIM FAN!

      Nice post jim! Finally someone with a brain who can think outside of the box! WE WANT MORE JIM POSTS!

      September 23, 2010 at 11:21 am | Report abuse |
    • MN Matt

      Way to go Jim! Not only are you right, you make all of your naysayers come out of the woodwork and display thier ignorance. (yes you medical student and cavs92, not to mention all the others and their petty quips) If you paid attention at all to your lower level science courses the possibilities would be as obvious as they are to Jim. Thank you to the scientists and volunteers in Utah for continuing to uncover the history of our planet.

      September 23, 2010 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Adam

      I love your mind.

      Maybe their species is Australopithecus Spiff-Arino.

      This is just spectacular!

      September 23, 2010 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Didn't Eat Breakfast

      I want what Jim had for breakfast......or rather what he had before posting that. Kudos to you, sire. And yes, I did picture a Raptor in a UFO with a space suit on. That and I pictured him with a laser gun in his holster.

      September 23, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Creebobby

      On our planet, the first creatures we put into orbit were mice, dogs, monkeys (several types) and then sometime later humans. I like to think that somewhere out there on some blessed Dino Planet, the first living thing they blasted into space was a puny human.
      I also think of T-Rex Lincoln, the author of the Lactation Proclamation, which (as you know) begins, "Four Score and seven years ago I free all the mammals."
      He can be seen here:
      In any case, God Bless Captain Jim Brieske for speaking the truth.

      September 24, 2010 at 12:03 am | Report abuse |
    • maria flores

      huh? ummmmm. where did you get that did you read it of form something or do you have a wild imagination

      September 24, 2010 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Peter

    Dinosaurs rule!

    September 23, 2010 at 1:13 am | Report abuse |
    • Snakeoil

      They were big and bad, but the asteroid was bigger..........

      September 23, 2010 at 7:44 am | Report abuse |
  6. Waffles

    I love this stuff!!!

    September 23, 2010 at 1:13 am | Report abuse |
  7. BigMike

    God wouldn't send employees all the way here. They are certainly outsourced.

    September 23, 2010 at 1:21 am | Report abuse |
  8. 4EverBlue

    Y'know... Satan the devil just planted ancient-looking dinosaur "fossils" all over the place to mislead us from the fact that God created life only 6000 years ago in its present form. Well, that's what a Jehovah's Witness tried to explain to me at my door the other day. I don't normally laugh that hard at 8am on a Saturday, but that was a rare exception.

    September 23, 2010 at 1:22 am | Report abuse |
    • MedicalStudent


      September 23, 2010 at 1:32 am | Report abuse |
    • Ben Smith

      One of my pastors told me something of this line when I was younger.

      September 23, 2010 at 3:43 am | Report abuse |
    • JenniPoohBear

      You know....the thing I never really ever understood about Jehovahs Witnesses is that they believe that only a finite number of people are getting into "heaven"....but their current member count far exceeds that number and they are STILL recruiting. I mean...come on here, guys. If you are gonna recruit me just for the number and I'm doomed to still go to h** got another thing coming. 😀

      September 23, 2010 at 4:32 am | Report abuse |
    • Coastal Exchange

      I think it's a pyramid scheme or perhaps like Pampered Chef; the more you sell (or convert in this case) the more people you have "under" you and the closer you get to the golden ticket to heaven... also hoping secretly that some of the Witness's above you slip up and lose their position. Whew! What a stressful existence!

      September 23, 2010 at 6:45 am | Report abuse |
    • Mathew

      Humm, while I disagree with Jehovah's Witnesses theology, your post does not reflect their beliefs.

      1) they believe the biblical story of creative 'days' is referring to 6 "ages" of indeterminate length. Just as you and I might say "in my grandfather's day....." to mean a length of time longer than literally 24 hours, Jehovah's Witnesses believe there were 6 'days' or periods of creation, spanning a long period of time (though perhaps not the millions and milliions of years evolution would require...) They do do believe in Adam and Eve's literal creation by God, but do not believe it happened just 6000 years ago.

      2) It's true Jehovah's Witnesses believe there is a limited number of people who will be taken to heaven (144,000, the number taken from the book of Revelation.) Other than that relatively small number, everyone else who receive God's approval will be resurrected to life on EARTH, living much as we do now but in a peaceful paradise. They do not believe in a hell, either–if you're not resurrected, you're simply dead and gone for good (no God that will burn people for eternity.)

      Though I am not a JW and disagree with most of their ideas, they do have the courage to live by their convictions. For example, several thousand JW were killed in Nazi concentration camps rather than join the German army–while at the same time in the US and other countries, many JW were persecuted for being pacifists.

      September 23, 2010 at 8:40 am | Report abuse |
    • TexGal

      My son [an avid dinosaur lover] and his friend had a discussion about this when they were in 3rd grade. His friend, who was raised Baptist, said this exact thing regarding the fossils being hidden to confuse and distract us. I thought though that he said the world was only 3000 years old but I could be mistaken. I advised my son to honor his friends beliefs and not argue with him. No one knows which is correct and there are more important things to think about and discuss.

      September 23, 2010 at 10:47 am | Report abuse |
    • Paul

      I agree with Matthew above. I'm agnostic, but I was raised by a Jehovah's Witness and their beliefs don't resemble at all what you promoted above. Baptists, on the other hand, do believe the six days of creation as a literal six days. More than likely, you jumbled up your different versions of Christianity and used the whole "Jehovah's Witnesses visited me" thing as a convenient piece of narrative to push your bias.

      September 23, 2010 at 10:55 am | Report abuse |
    • EricNoot

      I find the whole argument of "Satan the devil just planted ancient-looking dinosaur "fossils" all over the place to mislead us from the fact that God created life only 6000 years ago" is not only absurd, but also self-contradictory.
      1.) The bible states that God made the world, period.
      No one else took part in it, period.
      It also states that "God so loved the world that he gave his only son to die for it so that we may not perish, but have eternal life".

      So then if God so loves the world, why would intentionally he plant lies through out the planet? Is that a loving act to "intentionally set up" scientists for eternal damnation just because they, the ones he loves and created, has some innate curiosity about nature and so calls into question some text written some centuries ago?

      2.) A friend of mine once let me read his Torah, the original stories the bible is based on. It states very clearly and very exactly that each day in the creation story ends with "and the Sun set and it rose and it was the next day." There is no implied countless ages of time to it. The Sun set and then rose and it was the next day. Very clear. Very exact. A very short period of time.

      3.) I also have to ask, how do we know that it was "six days"? Last time I checked, God was the only witness to this act. So where in the bible, does God tap someone on the shoulder and say "Oh, just in case anyone was every curious on how I did it, write this down: In the beginning, ..." There is no accounting of such an incident in the bible where God does that. You think that such an event, might be important enough to mention it happening. But, no there is not a peep. This creation story just springs out of no where, as if we are just to accept it, hook, line and sinker. And don't say that God does not operate like that. If you do, then you have never read the last half of the book of Daniel.

      Why is it so hard, for so many people, to just come to terms with the idea that some person, some centuries ago, got it wrong when they put their stylus to parchment? Why are we so determined to believe in this childish fairy tale to the point of going to war, in one way or another, over it? When do we grow up and leave the sunday school fable?

      September 23, 2010 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |
  9. GedoNoxious

    ...and to think, they roamed with humans only 5,000 years ago. It must have been so fun to saddle them up and ride them around 🙂

    Signed – C. O'Donnell

    September 23, 2010 at 1:25 am | Report abuse |
    • Cavs92

      Rodeos were sure fun though, back in the day! None of this sissy bull riding and bronco bustin'! Lets see you stay atop an irritable triceratops for 8 seconds!

      September 23, 2010 at 4:19 am | Report abuse |
  10. mike

    just pure amazing....

    September 23, 2010 at 1:27 am | Report abuse |
  11. james

    Palins coil.

    September 23, 2010 at 1:28 am | Report abuse |
  12. Dale

    It looks like baby bop from the Barney show.

    September 23, 2010 at 1:30 am | Report abuse |
  13. Christlove

    is it 6000 years old?

    September 23, 2010 at 1:30 am | Report abuse |
  14. MedicalStudent


    AKA: Jesus horses.

    September 23, 2010 at 1:32 am | Report abuse |
    • Codifex Maximus

      Short... sweet... hilarious.

      September 23, 2010 at 4:28 am | Report abuse |
  15. Onevision

    It's Obama fault the dinosaurs died out. Thanks to him many humans had to adapt to riding horses in order to get around. Amirite?

    September 23, 2010 at 1:33 am | Report abuse |
    • TheRational

      You made me chuckle.

      September 23, 2010 at 2:21 am | Report abuse |
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