Triceratops 'Never Existed'
Three-horned fossils are actually juvenile torosauruses
By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff
Posted Aug 3, 2010 9:42 AM CDT
A 'triceratops' skeleton is displayed at Christie's auction house in Paris.   (AP Photo/Remy de la Mauviniere)

(Newser) – One of the best-known dinosaur species may not have really been a dinosaur species at all, according to new research. Scientists compared triceratops skulls to those of a lesser-known species, the torosaurus, and concluded that the triceratops were actually young torosauruses, New Scientist reports. They believe the three-horned dinosaur's skull changed shape as it aged.

Researchers say the bones of the horns and neck frill in the young dinosaurs remained spongy until they became full adults. "Even in the most mature specimens that we've examined, there is evidence that the skull was still undergoing dramatic changes at the time of death," one of the researchers says. Torosaurus and triceratops will now likely be reclassified as a single species—but don't shed a tear just yet: The name "triceratops" will be the one that stays, the scientists say.

View 1 more image
More From Newser
My Take on This Story
To report an error on this story,
notify our editors.
Triceratops Never Existed is...
Show results without voting
You Might Like
Showing 3 of 36 comments
Niar Yanty
Dec 25, 2010 12:30 PM CST
like all the samething
Aug 30, 2010 5:40 PM CDT
Why can't they still be known as Triceratops if it is the better known of the many of us have ever heard of the torosaurus until know?
Aug 27, 2010 8:26 PM CDT
My favorite dino the reason I wanted to and still do want be a paleontologist for the 14 years of my life my favorite dino they say never existed ummm helllloooooo they are nto like pokeman they dont evolve stupid scientist go back to montana freakin idiots