Nodosaurs are plant eating animals that are built a little like tanks with a relatively broad body with armor in their skin.

dinosaur, anyklosaurus, nodasaur

The fossil bones of a 100 million-year-old dinosaur discovered at a shopping center construction site will be studied and identified by paleontologists at Southern Methodist University’s Shuler Museum of Paleontology.

The bones were discovered by a Dallas Zoo employee and his young son. The fossils have been transported to SMU’s Shuler research museum in the Roy M. Huffington Department of Earth Sciences.

The discovery of the bones, believed to be from the family of armored dinosaurs called nodasuaridae, was covered by science journalist Lauren Silverman, reporting for KERA public radio.

The story aired April 8, 2015.

Hear the full story.

EXCERPT:

By Lauren Silverman
KERA Public Radio

A Dallas Zookeeper went on a fossil hunt with his little boy at a construction site. And the 4-year-old picked up what turned out to be a dinosaur bone – likely 100 million years old. On Wednesday, scientists found another key bone.

Wiley Brys and his dad Tim were digging through the dirt, just looking for some shark teeth last August when it happened.

“My son walked ahead of me and walked back with a chunk of bone that looked like rib bone,” Brys says.

Wylie Brys, now 5-years-old, discovered a bone in a construction site behind a Mansfield shopping center.
Wylie Brys, now 5-years-old, discovered a bone in a construction site behind a Mansfield shopping center.

A few inches long, it was a bit moist and a purplish gray. The bone, experts say, is likely 100-million years old.

For a kid who still counts half birthdays, that many years is hard to imagine.

“I don’t think he completely understands what’s going on,” Brys, a zookeeper who works with reptiles at the Dallas Zoo, says. “He’s just as interested in as playing in the dirt as the fossils I think.”

What Brys and his kid uncovered behind a Mansfield shopping center is thought to be part of a group of dinosaurs called Nodosaurs. They’re plant eating animals that are built a little like tanks.

“They’re these little armored, squatty-looking animals, relatively broad body with armor in their skin,” says Mike Polcyn, director of SMU’s Digital Earth Sciences Lab.

Polcyn has been working at the dig site, preparing the bones to be moved. Just when the team thought they’d uncovered it all, Polcyn says, they unearthed the Nodosaur’s upper leg bone.

Hear the full story.

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