Name Gastonia
Order Ornithischia
Suborder Ankylosauridae
Class Tyreophora
Name Translation "for Gaston"
Period Cretaceous (125-65 mya)
Location USA (Minnesota, Tennessee)
Diet Herbivore
Size 2m

Gastonia is a genus of polacanthine ankylosaurid dinosaur from the Early and Late Cretaceous of North America, around 125-65 million years ago. Closely related to Polacanthus, it has a sacral shield and large shoulder spikes. It is also the first polacanthine dinosaur to have been mounted for display at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, together with the related Gargoyleosaurus. This dinosaur was found in the same quarry as Utahraptor, the largest known dromaeosaurid.

Named by James Kirkland in 1998 from material recovered in Grand County Utah, more complete material exists for Gastonia than for any other polacanthine ankylosaur. Unfortunately, a wealth of disarticulated material from a bonebed presents problems as it can be hard to tell how many spikes a particular Gastonia actually had. Gastonia was named after Robert Gaston, the discoverer of the genus.

The type species, G. burgei, was found in rocks of the Cedar Mountain Formation (Yellow Cat member), which has been dated to 126 million years ago.

Discovery and naming




In popular culture

  • Gastonia is featured in Robert T. Bakker's novel Raptor Red.
  • Gastonia appears in Jurassic Fight Club where it fights a Utahraptor and wins.
  • It is a species that can be hunted in Primal Prey.
  • Gastonia appeared in the video game Dinosaur Hunting (XBOX).


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