An inhabitant of the late Cretaceous period (particularly from the Cenomanian to the Turonian stage), the Urbacodon was a small Dinosauria Theropoda belonging to the animal kingdom of class Reptilia, family Troodontidae, and genus Urbacodon. Urbacodon is a combination of two words: urbac, which is an acronym; and the Greek word odon, meaning tooth. This is an extremely understudied Troodontid since only the left dentary (lower jaw) along with 32 teeth were recovered from Uzbekistan. A.O. Averianov and H.D. Sues provided its scientific name Urbacodon itemirensis in 2007. The Urbacodon size is assumed to have been small. It had a set of closely-packed teeth. Only basic information could be furnished in this article due to a dearth of substantial data.
If you like this article about the Urbacodon, don't forget to check out the Draconyx and the Austroraptor to know some lesser-known facts about them.
The pronunciation of this dinosaur species' name is urb-ah-ko-don. Urbacodon means urbac tooth.
The Urbacodon was a type of small, carnivorous Theropoda of Dinosauria. It is a member of the animal kingdom of class Reptilia, the family Troodontidae, and the genus Urbacodon that lived during the late Cretaceous (Cenomanian) period. The scientific name of this dinosaur species is Urbacodon itemirensis as per A.O. Averianov and H.D. Sues, 2007.
It is estimated that these Troodontid inhabitants date back to approximately 95 million years ago, that is, in the late Cretaceous period, particularly during the Cenomanian and Turonian stages.
Unless more research is done, we won't know how and when the extinction of this dinosaur species spiraled. However, it is known that the late Cretaceous period underwent some severe natural disasters, which could have played a role in their extinction.
Paleontological expeditions have led to the recovery of fossils (32 teeth and left dentary of lower jaw) linked to this dinosaur species in Kemerovo Oblast in Russia and Navoiy region in Uzbekistan, particularly the Dzharakuduk formation and the Bissekty formation of the Kyzylkum Desert. Paleontologists believe that these formations witnessed a diverse collection of dinosaurs such as Tyrannosaurids and Allosaurids.
The type of landforms that were present in the region from where fossil remains of this dinosaur were recovered is unknown. Therefore, although it is known that they were terrestrial creatures, the kind of habitat that they preferred is still a mystery.
Not much is known about the Urbacodon's social lifestyle and compatibility due to a lack of substantial data. However, dinosaurs that belong to the Troodontidae family were known to be social creatures that engaged in social interactions such as pack hunting.
Due to the dearth of concrete scientific evidence, information regarding the average lifespan of this dinosaur cannot be mentioned. However, like other dinosaur species, it can be assumed that they also had average longevity of 70-80 years.
The Urbacodon itemirensis of Theropoda Dinosauria is one of the least studied ones that belong to the late Cretaceous (Cenomanian) period. As a result, the information related to the breeding season, courtship rituals (if any), parental care, gestation period, and other aspects of reproduction of this dinosaur is still unknown. However, it is known that dinosaurs (including the Urbacodon) were oviparous and reproduced by laying eggs. Most baby dinosaurs, after hatching, seldom needed parental care.
Almost nothing related to the physical description of the Urbacodon itemirensis (Averianov, 2007) is known since fossil remains that were recovered from Uzbekistan consisted of only the left dentary (lower jaw) with 32 teeth on them. In 2007, the holotype dentary was described and named by A.O. Averianov and H.D. Sues, three years after its discovery in 2004. The length of the holotype is 3.2 in (8.12 cm) with 32 tooth positions on it. It was a straight dentary consisting of 24 front and eight rear teeth. There is a well-defined gap, known as diastema, present between adjacent teeth. Teeth lacked serrations, meaning teeth were not as sharp as those of other Troodontids.
Since the left dentary (lower jaw) with 32 teeth were the only remains recovered from Uzbekistan, the exact number of bones that this Troodontid species had is unknown.
It is a known fact that dinosaurs, in general, engaged in both vocal and visual interactions. Paleontologists believe that the common vocalization displayed by dinosaurs sounded like a horn. However, the exact methods of communication found in this dinosaur are yet to be uncovered.
Although the Urbacodon height is unknown, what is known is Troodontids were small Theropods. However, it can be safely concluded that it resembled a Byronosaurus that was 4.9 ft (1.5 m) long.
Due to the lack of scientific evidence, the accurate locomotion pattern or speed of this dinosaur cannot be established. However, members of the Troodontidae family are known to be swift and agile due to their small size and lightweight body.
Nothing except the left dentary (lower jaw) with 32 teeth was recovered from the site. Hence, unless adequate information on the Urbacodon weight is found, significant statistics regarding the same cannot be provided. However, it is believed that this small Theropoda, like other members of the Troodontidae family, weighed between 1.8-2.2 lb (0.8-1 kg).
There are no separate names for male and female counterparts of this Troodontid species.
A baby Urbacodon of Dinosauria can be referred to as a hatchling since it hatches out of an egg.
Not much is known about the dietary habits of these dinosaurs except that they were carnivores. However, considering the type of teeth that was observed from the holotype, it can be assumed that their diet consisted of smaller insects and reptiles.
Although the level of aggression of the Urbacodon of Theropoda of Dinosauria is unclear due to lack of sufficient data, it can be assumed that they were somewhat aggressive by considering the closely-packed tooth-frame that it had.
Troodontids are known to have many sharp, pointed, closely-packed teeth. However, the Urbacodon teeth, like those of the Byronosaurus and the Mei, had no serrations, meaning its teeth lacked sharp edges.
The name Urbacodon is a combination of two words, urbac-odon, where urbac is the acronym of the nationalities of the scientists who were involved in the discovery of the dinosaur, and the Greek word odon stands for the tooth. The acronym urbac stands for Uzbekistan, Russia, Britain, America, and Canada. In other words, it means urbac tooth.
Of the name Urbacodon, urbac is an acronym of the nationalities of the scientists that worked on this project, and odon stands for a tooth. Hence, it can be concluded that teeth were an important characteristic feature of this dinosaur. Observations of the holotype revealed that teeth lacked serrations. However, being a dinosaur member of the Troodontidae family, it can be assumed that this Troodontid probably had strong, powerful teeth.
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*The second image is by Jaime Headden.
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