Stegosauria

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Stegosauria

[‚steg·ə′sȯr·ē·ə]
(paleontology)
A suborder of extinct reptiles of the order Ornithischia comprising the plated dinosaurs of the Jurassic which had tiny heads, great triangular plates arranged on the back in two alternating rows, and long spikes near the end of the tail.

Stegosauria

 

a suborder of ornithischian dinosaurs that lived in the Jurassic and early Cretaceous. The early stegosaurs —scelidosaurs—apparently walked primarily on their hind legs; later forms returned secondarily to locomotion on four legs. The stegosaurs were massive (reaching 6 m in length) herbivorous animals with a comparatively small head. Powerful bony plates on the back and tail protected them against attack by such large predators as carnosaurs. The plates apparently developed during the transition to quadrupedal locomotion, which decreased the vulnerability of the body surface. The structure of the teeth suggests that stegosaurs were the ancestors of other four-legged ornithischian dinosaurs, beginning with the ankylosaurs. Stegosaurian remains have been found in North America, in Western Europe, and in North and East Africa. Reports of stegosaurian finds in Asia proved to be erroneous.

References in periodicals archive ?
"The specimen here described represents one of the most complete stegosaurs in Europe and the first that includes cranial material," he further added.
Its partial skeleton includes the only known skull remains from any European stegosaur that had a row of bony plates along its back and a spiked tail probably used as a weapon.
Dr Mateus said that several elements of the skull of Miragaia longicollum were found, "representing the first such material recovered from a European stegosaur."
(2003): First stegosaurian dinosaur remains from the Early Cretaceous of Burgos (Spain), with a review of Cretaceous stegosaurs. Revista Espanola de Paleontologia, 18: 143-150.
Omosaurus armatus, from the Early Kimmeridgian of Wiltshire (England), was the first articulated stegosaur described in the world and is the type species of Dacentrurus.
Until recently, Dacentrurus was the only stegosaur documented in the Late Jurassic of Europe.
In addition, a dorsal vertebra and a dermal plate from the Early Cretaceous of Burgos, originally referred to an indeterminate stegosaur (Pereda-Suberbiola et al., 2003), were recently assigned to this genus (Maidment et al., 2008).
Comparisons are made with the clade Dacentrurinae, and more specifically with Dacentrurus, the only stegosaur genus documented so far in the Spanish record.
Several postcranial elements of a second stegosaur specimen were found encrusted in a sandstone slab fallen down from a lateral bank of the Barranco del Curro creek.
Since this manuscript was submitted for publication, a new paper updating the stegosaur record of the Teruel province was published (Cobos et al., 2010).
(2009): A stegosaur vertebra (Dinosauria: Ornithischia) from the Callovian (Middle Jurassic) of Sarthe, western France.