Stegosaur In Angkor Wat?

oldrover

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The genus specifically labeled Stegosaurus is known from North America and Europe, but ...

The more or less identically-structured stegosaurid genus Wuerhosaurus is known from East Asia (mostly China).

Thanks, I'm pretty terrible with dinosaurs.
 

oldrover

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You are probably right. But by playing "devils advocate" I would point out that a surviving Stegosaurus would evolve over several million years and possibly sport a larger head. If I remember correctly the Stegosaurus body form had at lest 9 known variations in its past. The large head is a noticeable piece of evidence but is not a clincher. No I'm not saying the artist saw a real live Stegosaurus; just speculating; playing devils advocate.

Without which cryptozoology would be very quiet. So, I for one appreciate it.
 

PeteByrdie

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Without which cryptozoology would be very quiet. So, I for one appreciate it.
Speculation can be fun, but when cryptozoologists pull the evolution card to explain discrepancies between cryptid descriptions and their favourite prehistoric identification I tend to switch off. It's such a shameless attempt to fit the evidence to a conclusion. The paucity of the fossil record means a cryptid is as likely an unknown prehistoric beast as a known one that has since evolved different characteristics.
 

oldrover

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Speculation can be fun, but when cryptozoologists pull the evolution card to explain discrepancies between cryptid descriptions and their favourite prehistoric identification I tend to switch off. It's such a shameless attempt to fit the evidence to a conclusion. The paucity of the fossil record means a cryptid is as likely an unknown prehistoric beast as a known one that has since evolved different characteristics.

To be honest, actual non 'post cryptid' cryptozoologists are pretty thin on the ground these days I'd say. I can only think of one that I think is credible, which isn't to say I agree with his hypotheses very often, but I think he's, to use one of your phrases, 'a stand up guy'. He's also a poster here.

But yes, the old days with Heuvelmens' burrowing glyptodonts of mid 20thC South America springing to mind ,as a particularly lunatic example of the bending the prehistoric beast of your choice approach. Along with his chalicothere Nandi bear, and his complete distortion of the traditional Geddit legends, and just about everything he and the rest of them have ever said.

Actually now I've started I realise I've got a whole list. The Andrewsarchus, which as you know turns out to be a big enteledont like critter, being proposed for the Beast of Gevaudan. And worse still, some clowns even tried to frame the thylacine for it. There's the outdated idea of Gigantopithecus as the yeti/bigfoot. In fact, once you start it's hard to stop.
 

EnolaGaia

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You are probably right. But by playing "devils advocate" I would point out that a surviving Stegosaurus would evolve over several million years and possibly sport a larger head. If I remember correctly the Stegosaurus body form had at lest 9 known variations in its past. The large head is a noticeable piece of evidence but is not a clincher. No I'm not saying the artist saw a real live Stegosaurus; just speculating; playing devils advocate.

There's nothing wrong with speculating, but bear this in mind ...

The most basic structural elements of a specific evolutionary line (e.g., stegosaurid genus) don't change that radically. Furthermore, the more specialized a feature becomes the less likely it is that the line can 'back out of' that specialization.

All stegosaurids had the narrow tapered skull, completely unlike the broad-snouted head of the carving. There's no variation on that basic scheme. Skull specialization is presumed to be affected by a number of factors (most particularly feeding tactics). The big problem in speculating about some sort of surviving stegosaurid line is explaining how and why that line managed to completely overhaul one of its most essential features.

In any case, such a radical change would result in something that wouldn't be categorized as a stegosaur in the first place.

My point is that a complete remodeling of the skull morphology would be a lot less plausible than an independent development of dorsal plates (a la stegosaurus) on a basic chassis that already had a larger, broader skull structure. This is a point lost on naive rubes who look no farther than narrowly-selected appearances in drawing a (spurious, IMHO ... ) connection between the carving's image and stegosaurs.

No candidate for such a broad-faced dorsally-plated beast (reptilian or mammalian) is known. That certainly doesn't mean it never existed; it only means we've not found such a beastie to date. On the other hand, it raises the even more pesky issue of how we've missed evidence for over 70 million years' ongoing stegosaurid evolutionary development - particularly if one insists on assuming the eventual descendants survived up to less than 1,000 years ago.
 

PeteByrdie

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Here's our old friend Trey the Explainer's take on the stegosaur carving.
We'll disagree with some of the suggestions here, but I think we mostly agree.
 

Jim

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There's nothing wrong with speculating, but bear this in mind ...

The most basic structural elements of a specific evolutionary line (e.g., stegosaurid genus) don't change that radically. Furthermore, the more specialized a feature becomes the less likely it is that the line can 'back out of' that specialization.

All stegosaurids had the narrow tapered skull, completely unlike the broad-snouted head of the carving. There's no variation on that basic scheme. Skull specialization is presumed to be affected by a number of factors (most particularly feeding tactics). The big problem in speculating about some sort of surviving stegosaurid line is explaining how and why that line managed to completely overhaul one of its most essential features.

In any case, such a radical change would result in something that wouldn't be categorized as a stegosaur in the first place.

My point is that a complete remodeling of the skull morphology would be a lot less plausible than an independent development of dorsal plates (a la stegosaurus) on a basic chassis that already had a larger, broader skull structure. This is a point lost on naive rubes who look no farther than narrowly-selected appearances in drawing a (spurious, IMHO ... ) connection between the carving's image and stegosaurs.

No candidate for such a broad-faced dorsally-plated beast (reptilian or mammalian) is known. That certainly doesn't mean it never existed; it only means we've not found such a beastie to date. On the other hand, it raises the even more pesky issue of how we've missed evidence for over 70 million years' ongoing stegosaurid evolutionary development - particularly if one insists on assuming the eventual descendants survived up to less than 1,000 years ago.

Of all the dinosaurs to have possible made it though to the modern age the stegosaurs are a poor choice. For one they ate a (supposedly biased on fossil evidences) diet of somewhat soft plants of which the gingko is a surviving relative. Such vegetation just doesn't exist in large enough quantities to support the creature under the correct climatic conditions. Also bear in mind these were very large and very dim witted creatures, not good survivors with all the climatic and atmospheric changes that took place in the Mesozoic era. The fossil record shows the entire family died out in the Jurassic period.
 

Brig

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As I have mentioned before; I am 90% sure you are absolutely correct in your assessment. As for the lack of brain power; here again you are most likely right, though science has been proven wrong time and again. Tiny brain probably indicates a lack of brain power, however, consider the bumble bee and other small brained creatures that are setting science on it's collective ear, by demonstrating smarts never dreamed of. It is more than obvious that the stegosaurs did not exist at the time of humans. But some of the arguments have been tipped over by the dinos themselves. There was one meat eater that actually evolved into a plant eater and several carnivores that showed traces of having eaten plants as well as meat. Omnivores in other words.
Observing the other cut pictures along with the "stegosaurus" , one has to admit the plates are not like any of the so called backgrounds of the others. We are pretty danged certain the beasty was not a stegosaurus; but that still leaves the question....what was it? Cryptoid? or just a mystake by an artist with too much wine in his system?
 

oldrover

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But some of the arguments have been tipped over by the dinos themselves. There was one meat eater that actually evolved into a plant eater and several carnivores that showed traces of having eaten plants as well as meat. Omnivores in other words.

I don't see why that would effect the arguments to be honest.
 

Brig

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Aw, probably not, but I figured that if a group could switch completely from meat to plants it shows a capacity for some rather radical natural changes.
 

oldrover

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Oh there's certainly a huge scope for that.
 

Yithian

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As ever, it's far more plausible--if a Stegosaur really is depicted--that a fossilised skeleton was unearthed and the shape inferred.

Rather than a living prehistoric survival, that is.
 

Mikefule

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I see this thread has revived after being dormant from 2006 to 2014, and dormant again from 2014 to 2019. Surely this is evidence that things can survive far longer than expected... ;)

Part of the problem is that the ordinary person in the street thinks in terms of "the age of the dinosaurs" as if it were a single brief period, and not that long ago.

However:

Stegosaurus flourished in the mid-late Jurassic, which was 155 – 150 million years ago.

Tyrannosaurus — another of the dinosaurs that every school kid knows — lived in the upper Cretacious around 66 – 68 million years ago, or roughly 90 MILLION years after stegosaurus.

There was then a period of around 64 MILLION years from Tyrannosaurus to the earliest humans: Homo Habilis, who existed around 2.8 – 2.4 million years ago.

A million is very big — seriously big. People seem to forget that it is 1,000 x 1,000, which is 10,000 centuries.

Could stegosaurus have lived a few million years after the date of the most recent stegosaurus fossil so far found? I suppose so.

Could any species of megafauna have survived 150 million years, through all the geological and climatic changes, and past the meteoric extinction event, so that it could coexist with early humans, and yet leave no further fossil evidence for that entire period? At the risk of sounding sceptical, I'm going with "No."
 

James_H

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Good jokes there from Homo Aves (Homo Dinosaurius?), sad to miss them by 13 years.
 

Ogdred Weary

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As ever, it's far more plausible--if a Stegosaur really is depicted--that a fossilised skeleton was unearthed and the shape inferred.

Rather than a living prehistoric survival, that is.

Even that isn't that plausible to me: it's rare that anything like a full skeleton is discovered and it's difficult to dig one up, even with all our knowledge and technology. Ancient people may well have been curious about fossils when they found them but digging up a whole large dinosaur would have been extremely difficult and inferring the shape would have been an enormous challenge too, look at the Victorian attempts in Crystal Palace.
 

blessmycottonsocks

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Either a modern addition - rather like Giger's alien gargoyle on Paisley Abbey or the astronaut carving on Salamanca cathedral, or it's a slightly clumsy medieval depiction of a rhino set against a big-leafed jungle backdrop.
 

blessmycottonsocks

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I visited the ruins of Knossos in Crete a about 10 years ago and bought a reproduction coin in the gift shop because it had a trilobite on it .. well, it looked exactly like a trilobite anyway .. sadly I don't know where the coin is now ..

.. Some random pictures of Knossos:

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=knoss ... e&tbm=isch


Spent a wonderful day at Knossos a couple of years back. The imagery I recall was mainly labyrinths and bull horns.
Given that there are several extant trilobite lookalikes though, it wouldn't surprise me if such a crustacean often caught by fishermen did appear on a coin.

https://www.trilobites.info/triloimposters.htm
 

Frideswide

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My first thought was boar. The head, jaw and ears look more like a pig than a dino IMNSHO :)
 

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Frideswide

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My first thought was boar. The head, jaw and ears look more like a pig than a dino IMNSHO :)

and speaking archaeologically I want to know what the other images are nearby, in similar positions across teh site, at other sites and so on.

The sword-wielding whatsit at the bottom doesn't appear to be drawn from the life.... unless it was of course :fhtagn:
 
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