Found in an oil mine in Canada, it’s spiky mummified body is 18 feet long. It is massive. It's the most well-preserved fossil ever found - it's the nodosaur. It sounds like the preview for a new big movie. Coming soon to a theatre near you?
Usually when you go see dinosaurs in an exhibit, you see their bones. You’ll notice this nodosaur’s skeleton is undetectable because it is covered in fossilized skin. As the museum describes it, it is "encased in intact body armour."
This particular nodosaur is a new species and genus. Museum experts say that this the oldest known dinosaur from Alberta. It is also the best-preserved nodosaur ever found. Now we know why it is the star of the show.
The museum worked with the National Geographic Society to find more information and for help researching the nodosaur. The species was then featured in the June issue of National Geographic Magazine. This nodosaur was first found in 2011.
Scientists believe that this nodosaur may have been swept away by a flooded river. They think that perhaps he was then carried out to sea, where he eventually sank to the bottom. He then spent millions of years on the ocean floor.
In those years laying on the ocean floor, minerals took over his armor and skin. These minerals took the place of the dinosaurs skin and preserved it in the lifelike form that you see today. It truly is amazing!
A similar species of dinosaur was recently identified at a Museum in Toronto. This fossil was found in Montana and also had soft tissue-like scales with parts of its horn still intact. But even though the dinosaur’s remains were well-preserved, it was nowhere near as lifelike as the Alberta nodosaur.
This nodosaur is the real deal. Robert Clark told National Geographic, “My daughter is eight years old, and I showed some of her classmates the pictures. They were like (explosion sound) - minds blown.”
Well, we are like (explosion sound) - minds blown too!