It's one of the oldest and best known dinosaurs from Western Canada, but also one of the least understood, and this week's Speakers Series lecture at the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Paleontology attempts to rectify that. ChasmosaurusPhotograph courtesy Royal Tyrrell Museum.
James Campbell is a PhD student working in the Biological Sciences Department at the University of Calgary.
"It's on the subject of two horned dinosaurs from Southern Alberta that lived between 77 and 75 million years ago," he told 99.5 Drum FM. "I re-evaluated these two horned dinosaurs, which were Chasmosaurus and Vagaceratops."
"Chasmosaurus was actually one of the first ceratopsians to be discovered and described in Western Canada, but even though it's been known for over 100 years and we've collected a lot of skulls of this animal, there's been a lot of debate as to how many species there are," he elaborated.
Campbell's thesis takes a closer look at two known species of Chasmosaurus and the closely related Vagaceratops and tries to figure out which belongs to what.
"Basically, every skull that's ever been found of Chasmosaurus is different from the other ones," he noted. "This variability has been thought to be due to the presence of several species, while others have argued that instead, all this variation is due to individual variation and sexual dimorphism within a single species."
Thursday's talk is entitled 'A Re-evaluation of Horned Dinosaurs From Southern Alberta.' It gets underway at 11:00 a.m. in the Tyrrell Auditorium. Admission is free.

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