Zuul, The ‘Ghostbusters’ Dinosaur | New Species Reported This Week


The discovery of a new species of horned, club-tailed dinosaur from the Cretaceous of Montana, late this week, made headlines all over the world and sparkled everyone’s imagination. With a striking resemblance to the monstrous demigod Zuul, one of the villains of the 1984 Ghostbusters movie, Zuul crurivastator gen. et sp. nov., a new ankylosaur described in the Royal Society Open Science, promises to shed new light into the surprising diversity of dinosaurs near the end of its age. So, “someone called the Ghostbusters” and Dan Aykroyd was pleased to catch Zuul, yet again (see video).

Vertebrates and plants were dominant this week in new species described. Ages are diverse, but new Cretaceous species predominate.

The new species reported this week come from America (Patagonia, Peru, USA) Europe (England, Greenland, Romania, Russia), Asia (Myanmar) and Oceania (New Zealand).


Full account of fossil species reported this week:

  1. Korallipteris alineaei sp. nov., a new paleobotany species based on a frond impression (Polypodiophyta) from the Miocene Landslip Hill silcrete of New Zealand, was reported in the New Zealand Journal of Botany (9th May 2017). Click for the web page of this article.

  2. Skull of Zuul crurivastator. Image Credit: Brian Boyle © Royal Ontario Museum

    Oardasaurus glyphis gen. et sp. nov., representing a new family, genera and species of teiioid lizards from the Upper Cretaceous of Romania, was described in the Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society (9th May 2017). Click for the web page of this article.

  3. Notiantha grandensis gen. et sp. nov., a new flowering plant (Rhamnaceae family) from the early Paleocene (Danian) of Patagonia, was reported in PLOS one (10th May 2017). Click for the web page of this article. (OPEN ACCESS)

  4. Oehlerticrinus peachi sp. nov., a new hexacrinitid crinoid (Camerata, Monobathrida) from the Lower Devonian Looe Basin of southern Cornwall, England, was reported in the PalZ (11th May 2017). Click for the web page of this article.

  5. Zuul crurivastator gen. et sp. nov., a new ankylosaurine dinosaur from the Late Cretaceous (Campanian) of the Judith River Formation, Montana (USA), was reported in the Royal Society Open Science (11th May 2017). Click for the web page of this article. (OPEN ACCESS)

  6. Krassilovidendron fecundum gen. et sp. nov., a new tree (Sequoioideae), from the Middle Cretaceous (Albian–Cenomanian) of the Kubaevo locality (Russian Federation, Kemerovo region, Western Siberia), was reported in Cretaceous Research (11th May 2017). Click for the web page of this article.

  7. Mystacodon selenensis gen. et sp. nov., a new archaic tooth-bearing mysticete from the Late Eocene of Peru, was described in Current Biology (11th May 2017). Click for the web page of this article.

  8. Cyclotosaurus naraserluki, sp. nov., cyclotosaurid (Amphibia, Temnospondyli) from the Late Triassic of the Jameson Land Basin (East Greenland), was described in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology (12th May 2017). Click for the web page of this article.

  9. Cretocrenis burmanicus, gen. et sp. nov., the oldest known amber inclusion of the family Hydrophilidae (Coleoptera: Polyphaga) was described from Burmese amber in Cretaceous Research (13th May 2017). Click for the web page of this article.

Lurdes Fonseca

Assistant Professor and Researcher at University of Lisbon
Sociologist (PhD), Paleontologist (Researcher in Micropaleontology), Majors in Sociology and Biology, Minor in Geology. Main interests in Paleontology: Microfossils, Molecular fossils, Paleobiology and Paleoecology. (read more about me)