Dinosaur Profile: Lambeosaurus

It’s been a long time since I did a dinosaur profile but I was in the mood for talking about dinosaurs and decided to bring this one to you all today. Lambeosaurus is a very interesting creature with a somewhat complex taxonomic history that makes it intriguing to study. It also makes a very interesting study for creationists in the origins debate.  Let’s take an in-depth look at Lambeosaurus.  

The original Lambeosaurus fossils were discovered over one hundred years ago in 1902.  The find came from fossil beds in Alberta Canada. Its discoverer misclassified it into a different genus which lasted until 1923 that the Lambeosaurus genus was erected and the current Lambeosaurus species were placed in it.  The original specimen was based on a single partial jawbone. However, more bones have been found since then.  Because juvenile <i>Lambeosaurus'</i> are slightly morphologically different than the adults, they were originally misclassified as other genera.

The Lambeosaurus has a distinctive feature that sets it apart from most other dinosaurs.  They have a hatchet-shaped crest nested atop their head.  This special crest made Lambeosaurus sexually dimorphic. Females had smaller crests than males. While it is unlikely the crest had any practical defensive uses, there are other potential uses.  Some believe that the crest changed color to communicate mood.  It also may have been used to communicate with other members of their species by blasting air through it to create a nasal tone.

Lambeosaurus was about fifty feet long and was probably about fourteen feet tall, maybe a little shorter, when it stood on its hind legs. It weighed upwards of five and a half tons.  With seven foot long legs, this dinosaur was likely fairly quick for its size.  Scientists estimate that it could run around thirty miles an hour. Because of its size, some speculated it was semi-aquatic, but this is as yet unproven.

Lambeosaurus had small, leaf-shaped teeth designed to grind and crush plant material.  Some scientists believe it may have housed around sixteen hundred of these teeth in its mouth that it replaced as they wore out and decayed. Some of their skin has been fossilized and it appears that it was similar in texture to modern reptile skin, covered in scales that provided minimal protection from attacking creatures.  Like most other dinosaurs, it is believed to have nested, laying eggs in a circular dirt nest. It is believed that the young were feed plants by adults for at least a few weeks in the nest after hatching.

Evolutionists propose that the Lambeosaurus arose in the Cretaceous period of earth’s history, approximately seventy-five million years ago. They believe it was a swamp and coastal forest dweller, fleeing into the water to avoid some of its predators. Evolutionists claim that it was found in western Canada and the north-west United States.

Creationists take a different view of Lambeosaurus much as might be expected since we have a different starting point than the evolutionists.  While the rock strata in which it is buried might be termed “Cretaceous”, it is not seventy-five million years old. That age relies on very inaccurate radiometric dating methods.   And it is likely Lambeosaurus was not originally from Canada. Something to remember is that a fossil is not found where it lived. It is not even found where it died. It is found where it was buried by the Flood. Consider this example. When a man dies, he is not buried in his house, where he lived. Nor is he buried in the hospital where he died.  He is buried wherever the pallbearers carry him.  Thus it is impossible to know where a fossil lived.   Where Lambeosaurus lived prior to the Flood is anyone’s guess.

Before the Fall, in the Garden of Eden, Lambeosaurus or a similar member of the Hadrosaurus kind would have been present.  Because of the design of their mouth, Lambeosaurus was likely designed to eat hard seeds and fruits such as ginkos, coconuts, cycads and other similar fruits.   They would have been excellent at cracking open the heavy shells of those fruits.  However, with their heavy bodies and lengthy tails, it is likely they also were useful for keeping undergrowth down in God’s original design.  However, ultimately what one believes about Lambeosaurus is dependent on one’s belief or disbelief in the Bible.

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