Today, we feature an image of one of the forthcoming Wave 3 Ceratopsians in the fabulous Beasts of the Mesozoic model series. The image shows the magnificent Xenoceratops (X. foremostensis), a Canadian centrosaurine ceratopsid that was formally named and described back in 2012.
“Alien Horned Face”
Fossils collected in south-western Alberta, close to the small community of Foremost, back in 1958 had been held in storage for decades. The fossils represented skeletal material from at least three individual animals. The scientific paper describing this new horned dinosaur, the first member of the Ceratopsia to be described from material associated with the Foremost Formation, was published in the Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences on the 8th of November 2012.
The genus name translates as “alien horned face”. A common misconception is that this dinosaur was named due to the “alien-looking” arrangement of horns on its head. Xenoceratops certainly had some very impressive ornamentation, including two large horns above its eyes. It may have had a nose horn too, but in the stunning Beasts of the Mesozoic model, the sculpting team have decided to give their Xenoceratops a prominent boss, on the naris, rather than a nose horn.
The “alien” reference is a reflection of the limited vertebrate fossil material collected from the Foremost Formation. In comparison to other Upper Cretaceous rocks in North America, the sandstones, shales, mudstones and coal deposits of the Foremost Formation have yielded very few dinosaur specimens and what has been found is extremely fragmentary. Xenoceratops was regarded as “alien” by the scientific team describing this plant-eating dinosaur, as it was quite a surprise to find a ceratopsid.
To read Everything Dinosaur’s article from 2012 about the discovery of this new Canadian ceratopsid: New Horned Dinosaur from Alberta.
A spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur commented that the Xenoceratops model, along with the other Wave 3 ceratopsians in the Beasts of the Mesozoic series would be in stock before Christmas (2021).
To see the current range of Beasts of the Mesozoic articulated dinosaur models: Beasts of the Mesozoic.