V >> Glossary Index
|N|| An audio file is available.|
| View printable page version.|
The Neoceratopsia (NEE-oh-sair-uh-TOPS-ih-ah) is a micro-order of the Ceratopsia
infraorder. These small-to large-sized horned dinosaurs were mostly quadrupedal,
with heads large in relation to their bodies. They bore large beaks, and
their skulls demonstate a diversity in frills. The larger families of this
group, such as Ceratopsidae, had species with large horns.
Dinosaurs that laid eggs did so in nests made of sand or mud. As do today's
turtles and crocodiles, dinosaurs laid their eggs in concentric circles
arranged in tiers. In some cases they laid their eggs in a grouping of
nests called a crèche. The size of the nest depended, of course,
upon the size of the dinosaur. In one instance, a 15 feet (4.6-meter)-wide
nest has been found. It was the discovery of a hadrosaur crèche
in Montana that provided evidence of nuturing behavior in dinosaurs. Remains
of Maiasaura nestlings revealed worn teeth, which suggests that they were
fed by their parents until they were able to leave the nest. In addition,
broken shells in the bottom of the nests were in such small pieces that
the dinosaurs who hatched from them must have stayed to walk and lie on
the pieces until they were broken in very small fragments. These facts
among others led to a revision of our view of dinosaur behavior.
Sea Niobrara (nye-o-BRAR-ah) Sea is the name of a shallow sea that once
stretched from North America to the Gulf of Mexico. During the Cretaceous
Period, this sea was over 1000 miles (1600 kilometers) across.
Translation: Northwestern Argentina Lizards
Noasauridae (no-ah-SAWR-ih-day) is a one-member family of Theropoda. Noasaurus,
one of the first coelurosaurs to be discovered in South America, is sufficiently
different from other coelurosaurs that it was referred to its own family.
Noasaurus lived during the Late Cretaceous Period.
Translation: Toothless Lizards
Nodosauridae (no-doe-SAWR-ih-day) is one of the two families of Ankylosauria,
the other being Ankylosauridae. Distinguishing nodosaurid characteristics
included bony armor covering their entire body and bony spikes upon their
backs, like ankylosaurids. Unlike ankylosaurids, however, the tails of
nodosaurs were not clubbed. Nodosaurs grew up to 20 feet (5.8 meters) long.
Nodosauridae flourished during the Cretaceous Period.
Nodosaurus, and Sauropelta.