Scientists from South Korea, the United States and Japan have discovered a new horned dinosaur, based on an analysis of fossil evidence found in South Korea. Dubbed "Koreaceratops" after its country of origin, the new dinosaur fossil was found in 2008 in a block of rock along the Tando Basin reservoir.

At approximately 5 to 6 feet long and weighing between 60 and 100 pounds, the animal was relatively small compared to its geologically younger, giant relatives like North America's Triceratops.

Koreaceratops had a parrot-like face with a beak at the front of its jaws, indicating it was an herbivore. The claws on its hind feet suggest that it was bipedal and moved at a fairly rapid speed. Koreaceratops had a unique fan-shaped tail formed by long neural spines, which suggests it may have been a good swimmer, and spent part of its time hunting for aquatic food.

It is one of the first articulated dinosaurs known from Korea, said Michael J. Ryan, curator and head of Vertebrate Paleontology at The Cleveland Museum of Natural History, who co-authored the research.

The newly identified genus, Koreaceratops hwaseongensis, lived about 103 million years ago during the late Early Cretaceous period. The specimen is the first ceratopsian dinosaur from the Korean peninsula. The partial skeleton includes a significant portion of the animal's backbone, hip bone, partial hind limbs and a nearly complete tail.


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