Monday, October 4, 2010

Diabloceratops eatoni, sitting pretty

Get a load of this great Diabloceratops by Andrey Atuchin, who goes by the handle Olorotitan at DeviantArt. Diabloceratops is another member of the ceratopsian class of 2010, a centrosaurine from late Cretaceous Utah. It's easy to be dazzled by Diablo's strange skull ornamentation, those two great barbs protruding from the back of its narrow frill. But its true importance lies in a more humble feature: two openings in the skull in front of the eye sockets called the antorbital fenestrae. These holes were lost in many subsequent ceratopsians; Scott Sampson has hypothesized that this may have been because greater skull strength was needed for possible wrestling matches between rival animals. Paleontologist Jim Kirkland's May 28 guest post at Archosaur Musings goes into great detail on this subject, discussing what the presence of that feature may mean in sorting out the ceratopsian family tree.

Big pat on the back to Atuchin for this beauty of a piece. I love the unconventional pose, the near-frontal view of the head, and the simplicity of the composition.

Nod of the parietal to Fuck Yeah Minerals and Fossils. Oh, Tumblr, you cheeky blog platform, you.


  1. Gorgeous, understated wildlife photo.

    Several thumbs up!

  2. But where does one mount the lasers and grenade launchers?

  3. Based on its attitude in this picture, I think that Diabloceratops is more of a diplomat than a warrior.

  4. Just an editing head's up:

    "Andrey Atuchin, who goes by the handle (weird blank space) at DeviantArt"

    She's Olorotitan, and can be found here:

  5. Thx, Trish. Weird weird weird. Blogger's been ackin' wrong lately.

  6. Post-fix update: In the editing pane, Blogger displayed the text, but when I looked at the code, the link's font size was mysteriously set to zero! totally bizarre.

  7. See! Damn evil-utionists can't even get their g-dang blog links straight!

    Y'know, Jesus had a blog. It was called THE BIBLE. And there ain't no dinosaurs in it!

  8. NOT MY FAULT. Blogger was clearly possessed by demons. It's because Satan clearly fears today's edition of the Boneyard... which is stocked to the rafters with links to creationist sites. Never shall ye win, ol' Scratch!


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