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March 1, 2012
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Dinosaur Highlights of 2011 by Albertonykus Dinosaur Highlights of 2011 by Albertonykus
Not too pleased with this one. Overestimated how much space I would need and concentrated too many dinosaurs on the sides.

I apologize for the theropod overload. It was surprisingly hard this year to pick out any real highlights among new taxa, and in the end I chose many whose significance I'd know best (i.e.: among maniraptors). Besides, sauropods are hard to draw and tend to throw the scaling completely off. Maybe if there were more nice, small sauropods like Spinophorosaurus from 2009 I'd be more motivated to include them.

Counter clockwise from top left:
Oxalaia quilombensis - A large spinosaurid known from various skull fragments. Also the first newly-named spinosaurid in a while.

Talos sampsoni - A troodont preserved with damage to the second toe, probably caused by use of the second claw as a weapon. The first newly-named North American Late Cretaceous troodont in a while, thanks to overlumping of Troodon.

Bonapartenykus ultimus - At two and a half meters, the largest known alvarezsauroid. Also the first alvarezsauroid discovered with associated eggs. Technically this is a 2012 dinosaur, but the paper was announced towards the end of 2011.

Pampadromaeus barberenai - A very basal sauropodomorph.

Propanoplosaurus marylandicus - Known from the impression (rather than the actual fossilized bones) of what appears to be a baby nodosaurid.

Daemonosaurus chauliodus - A basal theropod. Unlike most Triassic theropods it had a rather blunt snout.

Eodromaeus murphi - Another new basal theropod.

Lavocatavis africana - A phorusrhachoid whose ancestors somehow reached Africa.

Spinops sternbergorum - A ceratopsid described from fossils first found in 1916. It's been said to resemble a cross between Centrosaurus and Styracosaurus.

Xiaotingia zhengi - A Jurassic paravian. Notable because the analysis in the paper it was described in united it, Anchiornis, and Archaeopteryx as a group of basal deinonychosaurs (whereas Anchiornis was previously thought to be a troodont proper and Archaeopteryx a basal avialian). However, this analysis has been criticized, and many independent investigations have had different results (not to mention a few jumps up and down a cladogram really isn't that much of a big deal, especially for basal taxa). What it does show is that all these basal paravians were very similar to each other and may well represent what the ancestral paravian may have been like.
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:iconspongebobfossilpants:
SpongeBobFossilPants Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012
"The first newly-named North American troodont in a while"

What is meant by "a while"? There's still Koparion & Geminiraptor...
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:iconalbertonykus:
Albertonykus Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012
Koparion is from the 1990s; I think that counts as "a while". I forgot about Geminiraptor though; make that Late Cretaceous American troodonts then.
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:iconspongebobfossilpants:
SpongeBobFossilPants Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012
Ah. According to Sampson's blog, "a while" is over 75 years.
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:iconalbertonykus:
Albertonykus Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012
Probably a similar mistake.
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:iconzimices:
Zimices Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2012  Hobbyist
Well, certainly you don't depict a lot of dinosaurs, but I understand that it's a work of priorities. I like the inclusions of Oxalaia, Lavocatavis and Talos - I'm agree that the "Troodon complex" needs a big reevaluation, like in the case of Iguanodon (and in 2011 we have a lot of iguanodontians, including Delapparentia).
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:iconalbertonykus:
Albertonykus Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012
Camptosaurus also got some splitting up in 2011. I did consider Uteodon, in fact, though it didn't make the cut in the end.
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:iconzimices:
Zimices Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist
Anyway, more than 50 new genus and species is a good haul ;)
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:iconalbertonykus:
Albertonykus Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012
It is, but quality (significance) over quantity and all that.
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:iconspongebobfossilpants:
SpongeBobFossilPants Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012
Not to mention Uteodon & Osmakasaurus (both former species of Camptosaurus).
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:iconhimmapaan:
Himmapaan Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
I actually like the space in this very much, for what that's worth...
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