Protoceratops dinosaurs used their large skull frills to flirt with potential mates – and not as defence as previously thought, a new study reveals. Researchers at London ‘s Natural History Museum say they’ve studied the largest complete set of 3D data ever for any single type of dinosaur. The team analysed 3D scans of Protoceratops skulls to find out more regarding the evolution of the creature’s elaborate neck frills. About the size of a large sheep, Protoceratops was a fairly common species that would have lived in what is now Mongolia’s Gobi Desert, somewhere between 74 million and 70 million years ago. Protoceratops is a member of the Ceratopsian group of beaked herbivorous dinosaurs, which includes the more famous and much larger three-horned Triceratops. The experts concluded that Protoceratops developed the frills as a result of sexual selection – when certain traits in animals are favoured by members of the opposite sex, and so in time can become more elaborate. Pictured, artists’s impression of a Protoceratops – which was a predecessor of the more familiar horned dinosaurs such as Triceratops RELATED ARTICLES Previous 1 Next Giant stork-like dinosaur Spinosaurus that lived in North… Baby tyrannosaurs were only the size of… Read full this story
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