Home Science Sexual dimorphism in Stegosaurus can be decoded by Armor

Sexual dimorphism in Stegosaurus can be decoded by Armor


It seems that it was a very easy job to tell the male stegosaurus from the females; at least a new study of the dinosaurs’ ridge of fierce plates is suggesting so. According to the said study, the male and the female stegosaurus had armors of completely different patterns.

The study elaborating the sexual dimorphism of these dinos was published in the recent edition of the widely read science journal PLOS One. According to scientists carrying out the study, the stegosaurus males and females came with distinctly different armors. This finding might force researchers to carry out similar studies on other dinosaur species.

Evan Thomas Saitta, a researcher representing the University of Bristol, England and the author of the study, wrote that so far there has been no conclusive evidence that clearly suggested presence of sexual dimorphism in non avian dinosaur species.



For those who don’t know: stegosaurus used to inhabit this planet more than 150 million years back, which makes it an animal species belonging to the Late Jurassic era. These dinos like many other dino species had large bodies, but the most special feature they had was their food habit; the stegosaurus were plant eating dinos.

Other prominent physical feature of the stegosaurus include stumpy legs, small head, and a set of double-layered, staggered plates running from the neck up to its tail. When it comes to their appearance, the plates resembled a Mohawk. Scientists believe that these plant-eating dinos used the Mohawk-like plates for defending themselves against larger predators.


During the above mentioned study, Saitta inspected as many as 40 stegosaurus plates. When analyzing the plates, the researcher detected a pattern that clearly suggested sexual dimorphism. In other words, Saitta found that two sexes of the same dino species had plates that were notably different in shape. Here, it must be mentioned many existing creatures such as peacock also have sexual dimorphism.

Another notable physical characteristic of these prehistoric animals was their tail; the tails of these dinos ended with spikes, which allowed them to cause serious damage to the surroundings just by whipping their tails. The stegosaurus, however, did so only if they were attacked by any external force.

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