New Dinosaur Named After Ghostbusters’ Zuul
Canadian scientists discovered a new species of dinosaur in Montana. They named their new discovery after Zuul, the demonic dog from Ghostbusters.
There is only Zuul
Sometimes an unmissable opportunity presents itself. In 2016, a group of Canadian paleontologists were presented with one of those opportunities. During a dinosaur dig in Montana, the scientists unearthed a new species of dinosaur. Upon fully excavating and researching the new creature, they gave their discovery a name. Of course, naming a new species is an intimidating task. Fortunately, the scientists rose to the occasion and introduced the world to Zuul crurivastator. Obviously, the first bit of the new dino’s name is a reference to Gozer’s gatekeeper from Ghostbusters. However, the animal’s second name is also tongue in cheek. Crurivastator roughly translates to “destroyer of shins” in Latin. That bit of the name reflects the club found at the end of the prehistoric creature’s tail.
Researchers released a full study of the dinosaur and determined it lived during the Cretaceous period. Furthermore, it falls into the category of ankylosaurus. As a matter of fact, Zuul is the most complete recorded ankylosaur skeleton. Its full skull and its tail club are intact. And the bones contain preserved soft tissues and keratin. Also, based on the researchers’ findings, Zuul was a herbivore. As such, its tail was reserved for territory conflicts and as a defense against predators. Additionally, the animal measures a whopping 20 feet in length (10 of which are tail), and 5,500 pounds. This means it weighed about as much as a white rhinoceros. The full report is published in the Royal Society Open Science journal. While the researchers had fun with the name of the ancient beast, Zuul’s fossils proved a wealth of knowledge about Cretaceous era ankylosaurs.
If you could name a new species of dinosaur, what would you name it? Let us know in the comments!