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03 Sep. 2014 dinosaur count: 665
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Categories: AnkylosauriaHerbivoreUSATwo MedicineLate Cretaceous

OOHKOTOKIA

Pronunciation: O-OH-ko-toke-ee-uh
Meaning: Child of stone
Author: Penkalski (2013)
Previous names: None known
First discovery: Montana, USA
Roar factor: 5/10

Oohkotokia horneri

It's a rather unfortunate drawback of paleontology that the average dinosaur is discovered under, or at least surrounded by, tons of muck but, as luck would have it, Oohkotokia was "unearthed" by Paul Penkalski in 2013 at Montana's Museum of the Rockies where it had been loitering, barely noticed, for the best part of three decades. The advantages of this fortuitous find were two-fold.

Not only did Penkalski cunningly avoid dirty fingernails, blisters and backstrain but Oohkotokia neatly side-stepped the taxonomic turmoil that tends to plague Late Cretaceous North American ankylosaurids. The likes of Dyoplosaurus acutosquameus, Scolosaurus cutleri and Anodontosaurus lambei have been taxonomically entangled with Euoplocephalus tutus for many a year, but by the time Oohkotokia was officially described the previously-mentioned problematic critters had been pulled from the pit and recognized as distinct critters in their own right, and Oohkotokia sports a unique suite of characteristics that show it to be a distinct critter too. Apparently.

According to Penkalski, large eye sockets, a three-sided horn-like boss on each cheak, a modest nasal plate, smooth skull, robust limbs, and a combination of ankylosaurid and nodosaurid-style osteoderms are among the features that seperate Oohkotokia from its similar-aged kin, but its most unusual feature is a roughly triangular area around which the skull has been splayed outward, as if it had been stepped on and squished.

Oohkotokia also owns a tail club—well-preserved and 320 mm wide—the first ever found in the Two Medicine Formation, and is the first new ankylosaurid from Montana or Alberta to be described in more than 80 years... except it may not be new, not according to Victoria Arbour and Philip Currie who viewed its remains in May 2013 and reckon it's a dead ringer for Scolosaurus cutleri. Why do you do this to us?!
(Horner's Child of Stone)Etymology
Oohkotokia is derived from the the Blackfoot "ooh’kotoka" (large stone or rock), and the Latin "–ia" (made of or derived from). Literally, the name is intended to mean “child of stone” in allusion to its all-encompassing armour, and honors the Blackfeet people, on whose land the specimen was found.
The species epithet, horneri, honors paleontologist Jack Horner.
Discovery
The remains of Oohkotokia were discovered at MOR Locality TM-034, northwest of Cut Bank, in the Upper Two Medicine Formation of Montana, USA, by field crews from the Museum of the Rockies in 1986-87.
The holotype (MOR 433) is a skull and fragmentary skeleton.
References
• Paul Penkalski (2013) "A new ankylosaurid from the late Cretaceous Two Medicine Formation of Montana, USA". (Acta Palaeontologica Polonica).
• M.K. Vickaryous, T. Maryańska and D.B. Weishampel (2004) "Ankylosauria" in Weishampel, Dodson and Osmólska "The Dinosauria: Second Edition." /uk.
Estimations
Timeline: Vital Stats:
Era: Mesozoic Est. Max. Length: 6 meters
Period: Late Cretaceous Est. Max. Height: ?
Timespan: 75 million years ago Est. Max. Weight: 2 tons
Age: Late Campanian Diet: Herbivorous
                    
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To cite this page:
Lee Atkinson (DinoChecker) "OOHKOTOKIA: from DinoChecker's dinosaur archive".
http://www.dinochecker.com/dinosaurs/OOHKOTOKIA. Web access: 03rd Sep 2014.