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Vagaceratops irvinensis

In the Museum

The Museum team: Clayton Kennedy, Rob Holmes, and Kieran Shepherd.

The Museum team (from front to back): Clayton Kennedy, Rob Holmes, and Kieran Shepherd.

The specimen in Nature's collection is the one on which the "definition" of the species Vagaceratops irvinensis is based. This specimen is thus the holotype, which is the first specimen of a species to be scientifically described and named. This specimen is therefore the most important reference for palaeontologists who study these dinosaurs.

Technicians have cleaned and prepared the skull and skeleton of the fossil specimen for display in our Talisman Energy Fossil Gallery. Many of the bones were distorted during the fossilization process. The way they are mounted in the gallery shows how they were arranged when the specimen was found.

Because the skull was in fragments, parts were distorted, and some pieces were missing, a replica was made that shows the 1.4 metre-long skull as it would have been originally. This replica is also on display in the gallery.

And, the gallery features a life-sized herd of fleshed-out Vagaceratops irvinensis. The dramatic diorama shows them being threatened by a pair of carnivorous dinosaurs, Daspletosaurus torosus. (Read their Amazing Story).

Art meets science in a 3D animation that shows the bones rising out of their bed, putting themselves together and becoming a fleshed-out dinosaur. See this animation and others starring Vagaceratops irvinensis on our 3D Dinos YouTube Channel.

Dorsal view of the skull of Vagaceratops irvinensis. View of the dinosaur diorama in the gallery.
The complete skull on display in the Museum was made using casts of these fragments of the fossil specimen's skull. In our new Talisman Energy Fossil Gallery, you can go right into this life-sized diorama, which depicts a herd of Vagaceratops irvinensis being threatened by a pair of Daspletosaurus torosus.

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    A 3D image of the fleshed-out Vagaceratops irvinensis.
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