プシタコサウルス Psittacosaurus オーストラリア恐竜大陸
Ornithischia / Genaria / Cerapoda / Marginocephalia / Ceratopsia
/ Family: Psittacosauridae
/ First Described: 1923 / Found: Asia: China, Mongolia, Thailand
/ Length: 2 m / Weight: 70 kg / Food: Plants / Young: Eggs
/ Lived: Early Cretaceous 125-100 million years ago
Psittacosaurus is a small, primitive, horned-faced dinosaur. It is thought to be have been related to the small Ornithopod Hypsilophodon. The horned-faced dinosaurs probably evolved from an Ornithopod ancestor similar to a hypsilophodontid. The tell-tale presence of a small beak-like bone at the front of the skull of Psittacosaurus makes it one the earliest relatives of giants such as Styracosaurus and Triceratops.
Nine species of Psittacosaurus have been found in the Early Cretaceous rocks of Asia, and the remains of over a hundred individuals have been collected so far. This is an enormous number and shows how well this small dinosaur was adapted to its surroundings. Its robust parrot-like beak suggests that it fed on tough plant material, which it gathered while standing on its hind limbs. Psittacosaurus had fairly long arms, with four fingers on each hand. The hind limbs were longer and more robust, with three toes and an inner spur on the feet.