Rare Baby Dinosaur Fossil Airlifted Out of New Mexico Desert

PHOTO:Sgt. 1st Class Terrill Lee, from left, Sgt. James Ray and Staff Sgt. Noe Amador, secure the remains of a Pentaceratops, Oct. 29, 2015, in the Bisti-De-Na-Zin Wilderness area south of Farmington, N.M. (PHOTO CREDIT: Jon Austria/The Daily Times/AP Photo)
PHOTO:Sgt. 1st Class Terrill Lee, from left, Sgt. James Ray and Staff Sgt. Noe Amador, secure the remains of a Pentaceratops, Oct. 29, 2015, in the Bisti-De-Na-Zin Wilderness area south of Farmington, N.M. (PHOTO CREDIT: Jon Austria/The Daily Times/AP Photo)

The National Guard recently airlifted a rare baby dinosaur fossil, estimated to be 70 million years old, out of “desert wilderness” in northwestern New Mexico, according to museum officials at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science.

The baby fossil, which is nearly as big a rhinoceros, is of a Pentaceratops, “a five-horned terrestrial dino similar to a Triceratops,” according to Spencer Lucas, the museum’s chief scientist. Lucas added that in the plaster, the fossil weighed over a ton.

“Baby dinos are so rare to find as fossils, and even more incredible is that this is the first baby fossil of a Pentaceratops ever discovered,” Lucas told ABC News today. “When I saw the helicopter carrying it, I was just thinking how this plant-eating dino that used to walk in a New Mexico jungle 70 million years ago is now in the air flying!”

The baby Pentaceratops was first discovered during an excavation in 2011 by Amanda Cantrell, who is the museum’s geoscience collections manager and the only female professional paleontologist in the state, Lucas said.

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SOURCE: ABC News, Avianne Tan