Three years after it was first discovered in Montana, Ava, the unique dinosaur species, was exhibited in Colorado on Thursday. After repeated computer simulations and analyses, scientists have reached the conclusion that “Ava” is an exemplar of a new species of dinosaurs that has not been discovered yet.
The remains of Ava were first identified three years ago in Woodland Park, Montana. Paleontologists initially thought the bones belonged to a young exemplar of Avaceratops, one of the most studies species of dinosaurs at present.
At a closer look, researchers have noticed that the newly found skeleton was not identical to Avaceratops and that there were significant difference between the two. First of all, the new fossil has no nose horn and, second of all, the brow horns have a very distinctive shape. The latter do not point upwards or sidewards, but rather towards each other. Based on this new feature, paleontologists have concluded that “Ava” belonged to a completely new species of dinosaurs.
The study of the unique dinosaur species lasted for approximately three years. Scientists have stated that the excavation works were very strenuous because they had to make sure the bones were not damaged during the unearthing works.
Ava’s reconstruction has proven particularly difficult because scientists had no idea how the new dinosaur really looked like. They were lucky that the 75-million-year-old bones were well-preserved and restoring them to their initial state was rather easy. For the missing bones, scientists have used a 3D printer and succeeded in completely recreating Ava.
In spite of the difficulties that scientists have encountered, they were very pleased to work for the new discovery. Anthony Maltese, from the Dinosaur Resource Center, has confessed that he felt honored to work for the newly discovered dinosaur species. He was very excited to be among the first people to find out how the undiscovered species looked like. In his opinion, this a unique opportunity in a person’s life.
Scientists will work to find out the dinosaur family with whom Ava may be related. Until then, the small fossil will be exposed at the Rocky Mountain Dinosaur Resource Center in Colorado.
Image source: www.tripomatic.com
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