A New Basal Neoceratopsian Dinosaur from the Middle Cretaceous of Jilin Province, China
A new basal neoceratopsian dinosaur, Helioceratops brachygnathus gen. et sp. nov., is described from the Quantou Formation (late Early Cretaceous or early Late Cretaceous) in the Liufangzi locality (Jilin province, China). Helioceratops differs from other basal neoceratopsians with its deep dentary ramus, its steeply-inclined ventral predentary facet, its heterogeneous dentary crowns, and by the denticles and secondary ridges asymmetrically distributed on either side of the primary ridge on its dentary teeth. Along with Auroraceratops and Yamaceratops, Helioceratops represents one of the most derived non-coronosaurian neoceratopsians. The palaeogeographical distribution of basal neoceratopsians appears limited to northern China and southern Mongolia in the current state of our knowledge. It is therefore probable that this region constituted the birthplace for more advanced, Late Cretaceous Coronosauria.