Meet Canada's newest dinosaur, unearthed from the oil sands
Borealopelta markmitchelli, despite having a physique "like a tank," had predators. And its name honours the technician who spent years preparing the fossil
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Alberta's creature from the deep, a spectacularly preserved armoured dinosaur unearthed from the oil sands, may have weighed 1,300 kg and been built "like a tank," — but it had predators after it.
Take a second to imagine how deadly those must have been.
A new study of its skin (yes, it still has skin after 110 million years!), found it had a dark-coloured back and a lighter, maybe yellow, belly. The paper, by scientists at Alberta's Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology, was published today in the journal Current Biology.
That's a common type of camouflage called countershading, seen all over the animal kingdom: The parts of the animal's body exposed to light are darker, while the underside (i.e. the belly) are usually lighter in colour.
The dino, which represents a new species, has been named Borealopelta markmitchelli, after Mark Mitchell, the technician who spent five years carefully chipping away rock to reveal the fossil within.