Puzzling plates

Kentrosaurus has a striking combination of spikes and plates that run down its back and tail. The upper part of the back has a double row of plates; the lower portion and tail a double row of spikes. The spikes appear to be defensive but the plates are a little less easy to explain. Perhaps Kentrosaurus can make them change colour as part of a courtship display. Or maybe they are for regulating the dinosaur's temperature; a series of blood vessels near the surface could help cool or heat the animal.

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