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What is Nodosauridae?

Pronunciation: NOHD-o-SOR-uh-day
Author: Othniel Charles Marsh
Year: 1890
Meaning: Knob lizards (see etymology)
Locomotion: Quadrupedal (four legs)
Synonyms:
Acanthopholididae (Nopcsa, 1902), Polacanthidae (Wieland, 1911), Palaeoscincidae (Nopcsa, 1918), Panoplosauridae (Nopcsa, 1929), Struthiosauridae (Kuhn, 1966), Edmontoniidae (Bakker, 1988)
Definition:
The most inclusive taxon containing Panoplosaurus mirus and Nodosaurus textilis but not Ankylosaurus magniventris.
About
Nodosauridae is one of the three ugly sisters, the trio of families (along with Ankylosauridae and Polacanthidae) that are known collectively as Ankylosauria. It was erected by Othniel Charles Marsh in 1890, and anchored on the dinosaur called Nodosaurus, though Cedarpelta is the earliest known member.

Like all ankylosaurs, nodosaurs are wide and low slung with four relatively short legs, an armoured neck, back and flanks, and small teeth. Compared to the heavyweight ankylosaurids, nodosaurids have a somewhat domed skull and lack a clubbed tail, but some have spikes jutting from their shoulders and necks. A long, thin snout suggests they were selective foragers unlike their wide-skulled relatives, and bony "cheek" plates combined with tooth wear on known specimens suggests they chewed their food rather than swallow it whole and rely on gastroliths for processing in the gut.

Nodosaur fossils have been discovered in Antarctica, North America, Asia, Australia and Europe.

Click here to search the database for Nodosaurs.
Etymology
Nodosauridae is derived from the Latin "nodus" (knob, node), and the Greek "sauros" (lizard) and "idae" (denoting a family).
Relationships
References
• Carpenter K. (2001) "The Armored Dinosaurs". /uk.
• Vickaryous M.K., Maryańska T. and Weishampel D.B. (2004) "Ankylosauria" in Weishampel, Dodson and Osmólska "The Dinosauria: Second Edition". /uk.
• Kirkland J.I., Alcalá L., Loewen M.A., Espílez E., Mampel L. and Wiersma J.P. (2013) "The basal nodosaurid ankylosaur Europelta carbonensis n. gen., n. sp. from the Lower Cretaceous (lower Albian) Escucha Formation of northeastern Spain".
ankylo-skel-model
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To cite this page:
Atkinson, L. "DinoChecker FAQ entry :: What is Nodosauridae?"
http://www.dinochecker.com/dinosaurfaqs/what-is-nodosauridae›. Web access: 18th Oct 2017.
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