Some time ago in the past, a team of British paleontologists from the British Natural History Museum had discovered some fossils of a dinosaur in Morocco, in the Middle Atlas Mountains. The bones, at first glance, appeared to have belonged to a stegosaurus.
After further examination, the team came up to the conclusion that the fossils have belonged to a new species of the stegosaurus, which had roamed the Earth approximately 168 million years ago, during the middle Jurassic era. What made the scientists believe this new species was different were the uncommon plate-shaped bones sticking out of the spine.
The age of this species of stegosaurus makes them the oldest ones ever found as most stegosaurus species found until now have been dated to have lived in the latter part of the Jurassic era. It is also worth mentioning that it was the first of this genus to be ever found in North Africa.
A short history of the stegosaurus
Stegosaurus is a genus of herbivorous thyreophoran (armored) dinosaurs that, until now, have been believed to date from the Late Jurassic period, between 155 and 150 million years ago. They have lived in the territories that we now know as the western United States and Portugal.
The stegosaurus species were abundant, heavily built quadrupeds with rounded backs, short forelegs, long hind legs, and long tails that they kept high in the air. Because of their unique mixture of wide, vertical plates and spikey tail, Stegosaurus is one of the most well-known types of dinosaurs.
Most likely than not, they used their tails to guard against predators, while their plates may have been used to intimidate other predators, and also to regulate their body temperature. They also had a short neck and a small head, meaning they probably ate small bushes and shrubs.