Explore Dinosaurs Names A - Z
- 1 Explore Dinosaurs Names A - Z
- 2 A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
- 3 Dinosaur Names Beginning With the Letter M.
- 3.1 Magyatosaurus
- 3.2 Maiasaura
- 3.3 Majungasaurus
- 3.4 Malawisaurus
- 3.5 Mamenchisaurus
- 3.6 Mapusaurus
- 3.7 Marshosaurus
- 3.8 Masiakasaurus
- 3.9 Massospondylus
- 3.10 Maxakalisaurus
- 3.11 Megalosaurus
- 3.12 Melanorosaurus
- 3.13 Metriacanthosaurus
- 3.14 Microceratus
- 3.15 Micropachycephalosaurus
- 3.16 Microraptor
- 3.17 Minmi
- 3.18 Monolophosaurus
- 3.19 Mononykus
- 3.20 Mussaurus
- 3.21 Muttaburrasaurus
- 4 Explore Dinosaurs Names A - Z
- 5 A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Dinosaur Names Beginning With the Letter M.
|Lived:||Late Cretaceous, 71 – 65 million years ago|
|Length||6m / 20ft|
FURTHER READING AND STUDY
- Vremir and Codrea (2002). The first Late Cretaceous (Maastrichtian) dinosaur footprints from Transylvania (Romania).
- Stein et al., (2010). Small body size and extreme cortical bone remodeling indicate phyletic dwarfism in Magyarosaurus dacus
- Gerald et al., (2012). First evidence of reproductive adaptation to “island effect” of a dwarf Cretaceous Romanian titanosaur
Magyarosaurus (mod-yar-oh-sore-us) is a genus of the miniature sauropod herbivorous dinosaurs that means “Magyar lizard.” It lived during the Cretaceous epoch and roamed Europe’s terrestrial areas. Its fossils have been discovered in Romania and Caraș-Severin (Romania), and it lived between 83.5 million and Maastrichtian times. It is thought to be an excellent example of insular dwarfism and despite some claims that Magyarosaurus specimens are simply juveniles of larger species, subsequent research has shown that these are adults who have reached the upper limit of their greatest possible size. Many dinosaurs, like Magyarosaurus, evolved into smaller versions of its ancestors as a result of this. The name Magyarosaurus dacus comes from the word ‘Magyar,’ which refers to a tribe of humans who colonized modern-day Hungary. The Dacian people of Romania are referenced in the species name.
Since the discovery of this species’ full skeleton has yet to be uncovered but nonetheless, the dinosaur’s fossil representation isn’t awful, as bones from ten individuals have been discovered so far. The holotype specimen was made up entirely of vertebral columns, and aside from it, the scapula and humerus have been discovered. The fact that they were dwarves was a distinguishing trait of this Romanian species. Despite belonging to the sauropod dinosaur group, the Magyarosaurus was significantly smaller in size than other species in the group.
Sauropods walked on four legs that were short and pillar-like. Magyarosaurus dacus had a long neck since it belonged to the Sauropodomorpha group. Magyarosaurus possessed dermal plates or osteoderms covering its body, according to the gathered fossil specimens and the size and shape of these bony plates were uneven. Furthermore, the found bones revealed that the centrum of the spinal column of this species’ members was relatively extended, measuring 4.1 in (10.5 cm). This sauropod stood 6 feet (2 metres) tall and measured 20 feet in length (6 m) and weighed 1100 kg. Being a Sauropod, Magyarosaurus running speed was likely similar to other sauropods i.e. 4.5 miles per hour However, as a small species, Magyarosaurus may have had limited movement because to its diminutive legs. Magyarosaurus was a herbivore, which meant it only ate plants and it most likely ate the prevalent tropical flora of the period. Researchers actually discovered 14 dinosaur eggs in the Romanian location where the dinosaur’s remains were discovered and the existence of microscopic plates and scales is one of the eggs’ characteristics. According to certain beliefs, these formations housed minerals and as a result, when supplies were scarce, this dinosaur would resorb its egg. Despite their diminutive size, adult dinosaurs of this species possessed unique traits that assisted them in self-defence, the dermal plates or osteoderms on their bodies, for example, served an important role in defending the animals from predators. Furthermore, these dinosaurs may have whipped predators by swinging their tails from side to side. A global extinction catastrophe 66 million years ago marked the end of the Late Cretaceous, wiping off the dinosaur population from the face of the earth and as a result, this Titanosauria lineage member went extinct as well.
|Lived:||Late Cretaceous, 76.7 million years ago|
|Weight:||3,000 – 10,000kg|
|Length||9m / 30ft|
FURTHER READING AND STUDY
- Horner & Makela – 1979. Nest of juveniles provides evidence of family structure among dinosaurs,
- Woodward et al., (2015). Maiasaura, a model organism for extinct vertebrate population biology: A large sample statistical assessment of growth dynamics and survivorship.
- Strauss (2019). Mother Dinosaur.
Maiasaura (my-ah-SORE-ah) is a genus of herbivorous hadrosaurid dinosaurs that lived during the Late Cretaceous period in North America. In the late 1970s discovery of Maiasaura showed the first evidence of parental care in dinosaurs, and thousands of Maiasaura bones have since been discovered in northern Montana. Maisaura is the state fossil of Montana and can be found in the form of eggs, infants, juveniles, and adults.
Prior to the Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction 65 million years ago, it was one of the most recent dinosaur species to develop with a huge nesting colony discovered between 1978 and 1979. In a region known as Egg Mountain in the Two Medicine Formation, was the first specimen of Maiasaura discovered. More than 200 remains were unearthed, including hatchlings, juveniles, young adults, and fully mature adults. The fossils showed us that the parents guarded the nests and each one had 30 to 40 eggs arranged in a spiral arrangement so they were kept warm by being covered in rotting foliage. The eggs were around the size of ostrich eggs, and the young grew up quickly and they were able to leave the nest by the time they were one year old, indicating that they were warm-blooded.
Despite the fact that they had fled the nest, the adults continued to look after them and because of these characteristics, the Maiasaura has been given the moniker “Good Mother Lizard” to refute the myth that dinosaurs didn’t care for their offspring. Hundreds of carcasses were found in one ash bed in Montana, as well as those found in nesting sites, indicating Maiasaura was migratory. This data also showed that these dinosaurs were gregarious animals who nested in groups and they most likely returned to the same nesting spot year after year.
According to studies of bone structure, Maiasaura would have taken roughly seven or eight years to grow to an adult size of eight meters and around 30 feet (9 meters) in length. It had a toothless, short, and broad bill. Hundreds of teeth were inside the Maiasaura’s mouth, which was utilized to chew and grind the vegetation it ate. Maiasaura had a little bony crest between its eyes, a low head the shape similar to that of a modern day horse. It had a long, pointed tail with Maiasaura’s hind legs longer than its front limbs, like other duck-billed dinosaurs. Maiasaura most likely moved on all four limbs in search of food and fled on its hind legs to avoid danger, according to scientists. Due to their strong social requirements, this dinosaur requires a herd to survive, and may have got along with other herbivorous dinosaurs with enormous population caps. Except for its big muscular tail and herd behaviour, this herbivorous dinosaur appeared to have no defence against predators.
|Lived:||Late Cretaceous, 70 – 66 million years ago|
|Weight:||3,000 – 10,000kg|
|Length||6 – 7m / 19.7 – 23ft|
FURTHER READING OR STUDY
- Krause et al., (2007). Overview of the history of discovery, taxonomy, phylogeny, and biogeography of Majungasaurus crenatissimus from the Late Cretaceous of Madagascar.
- Sampson et al., (1996). The premaxilla of Majungasaurus, with implications for Gondwanan paleobiogeography
- Sampson (1998). Predatory Dinosaur Remains from Madagascar
The carnivorous dinosaur, Majungasaurus (mah-joon-gah-sore-us), was a genus of abelisaurid theropods. The word Majungasaurus is derived from a Latin word meaning “Majunga lizard’, or ‘the lizard from Majunga’. It lived throughout the Cretaceous period and inhabited Madagascar’s terrestrial areas between 72.1 million and 66 million years ago, with its fossils having been discovered in regions like Mahajanga Province (Madagascar). This apex theropod predator was discovered in 1896 on Madagascar and was the meanest beast on the island, standing 18 feet tall and weighing two tones, with a tiny horn on its head. Majungasaurus had relatives in India such as Rajasaurus, and Argentina such as Carnotaurus. The tooth marks on Majungasaurus bones show that this dinosaur ate other dinosaurs and lived in a semi-arid climate with a coastal flood plain cut by multiple sandy river channels. It coexisted with smaller carnivores and also the sauropod Rapetosaurus, which was its major prey.
A French paleontologist first discovered Majungasaurus and Paleontologists have since discovered 24 different fossils of this beast, including full skulls and partial skeletons. Majungasaurus crenatissimus is the only species in the genus and Majungatholus is another name for this dinosaur, which is a junior synonym of Majungasaurus.
The Majungasaurus possessed two crests on its skull, as well as a tiny spike, and had tiny arms, but little is known about its forelimbs other than their size. Theropods in general had longer hind limbs that were also highly muscled and stocky with Majungasaurus being distinguished from other abelisaurids by its distinctive broader head. Majungasaurus was a bipedal predator with a snout that was short and the top of the Majungasaurus’s snout had a rough texture. It also had a thick bone on top of the head, as well as a rounded horn (which was mistaken for the pachycephalosaur’s dome upon finding). Majungasaurus features a bony hump at the top of its cranium and a deep, blunt head and possessed a spine-like structure on its back with bone osteoderms all over its body. Its base genome is primarily light brown with dark brown stripes and white osteoderms all over the body.
Majungasaurus could live in pairs or alone. They were ferocious animals that would fight herbivores much larger than themselves in death matches, and they would consume any dinosaur with low defence qualities. Due to their low comfort level, Majungasaurus were one of the simpler carnivorous dinosaurs to manage despite their hostile temperament. The Majungasaurus’ bite would not let the prey escape due to its strong teeth that were curled backward. The animal’s jaws were also modified to hold tightly rather than slash with the first decent skull being discovered in 1996 helped confirm this. The reptile has become one of the most well-studied theropod dinosaurs from the Southern Hemisphere in recent years. One of the last dinosaurs to have existed was the Majungasaurus.
|Lived:||Early Cretaceous, 121 – 112 million years ago|
|Weight:||3,100 – 10,000kg|
|Length||11 – 16m / 36 – 52ft|
FURTHER READING AND STUDY
- Jacobs and Winkler (1990). The Dinosaur Beds of northern Malawi, Africa.
- Jacobs et al., (1993). New material of an Early Cretaceous titanosaurid sauropod dinosaur from Malawi.
- Andrzejewski et al., (2019). The braincase of Malawisaurus dixeyi
Malawisaurus (mah-lah-wee-sore-us) was a genus of titanosaurian sauropod herbivorous dinosaurs that lived in the African country of Malawi during the Cretaceous period, and its fossils showed it it lived between 125 million and 113 million years ago. Paleontologists discovered 8 separate fossils, including skull components, teeth, vertebrae, limb bones, and osteoderms (armour). Malawisaurus is named after the country where it was discovered and was first discovered in 1928. It was a small titanosaurid sauropod dinosaur that lived during the early Cretaceous Period and had large dermal scales covering the skin on its back, just like other titanosaurs. Malawisaurus dixeyi is the only type species, with cranial elements, 18 cervical vertebrae, 10 dorsal vertebrae, a sacrum, 51 caudal vertebrae, 24 chevrons, pectoral elements, pelvic elements, and dermal armour, all of which are described and depicted. Malawisaurus had a short, high macronarian skull, according to the cranial components.
They were the tiniest members of the sauropod family and only their skulls and their teeth have been discovered, but researchers have discovered two variants of the Malawisaurus dinosaur. The differences in the Malawisaurus vertebrae of the neck and tail were used to make this distinction. The gaps between the vertebrae of this dinosaur’s tail contributed to their stiff tails where they have a squarish, and lengthy neck. According to newly discovered material, the teeth resemble large pegs that would have made it easier to remove leaves and plants. Like most sauropods, this dinosaur had a long neck and tail with its body described as being spherical and large in the middle. The skull developed huge nasal openings and took on a squarish appearance which in a dry and humid climate, these holes must have helped these enormous creatures stay cool.
They were thought to have been the largest and most common group of creatures on the planet at the time. They, like all other Titanosauria dinosaur species, had armoured dermal scales that ran the length of their backs and defended them from their predators. These species have been reported to lay one to two eggs, occasionally three and preferred to live near bodies of water with plant matter and muddy habitats that dominated the Malawisaurus environment and ecosystem. Malawisaurus dixeyi became extinct about 85 million years ago, having lived for about 112-121 million years.
|Lived:||Late Jurassic, 155 -145 million years ago|
|Weight:||3,100 – 10,000kg|
|Length||15 – 26m / 49 – 85ft|
FURTHER READING AND STUDY
- Young (1954). On a new sauropod from Yiping, Szechuan, China
- Russell & Zheng (1993). A large mamenchisaurid from the Junggar Basin, Xinjiang
- Paul (2017). Restoring Maximum Vertical Browsing Reach in Sauropod Dinosaurs
Mamenchisaurus (Mamen-chi-sore-us) was a sauropod herbivorous dinosaur genus named after the Mamenxi lizard which lived in Asia during the Jurassic period during the Upper Jurassic Epoch until 112.03 million years ago. Discovered in Chongqing (China), Govi-Altai (Mongolia), and Sichuan (China), paleontologists have discovered 24 different specimens, most of which are incomplete remnants. The Sichuan Basin in China is home to the majority of known Mamenchisauridae sauropod fossils and in this location and elsewhere in China, remains of seven species, all enormous and long-necked, have been discovered in sediments dating back 160 million years.
It has the most cervical or neck vertebrae of any dinosaur ever discovered and was around 26 meters (85 feet) in length and weighed about 16 tons (18 tn.). They were notable for their elongated necks, which accounted for over half of their total body length. In fact, it had the longest neck of any living species which was as long as its body and tail combined. Mamenchisaurus’ neck was 18 meters (60 feet) long, which is longer than a school bus. The rest of it was identical to the rest of its family, with a long tail and sturdy legs. Mamenchisaurus sat with its neck almost horizontal (parallel to the ground). Mamenchisaurus’ long neck was considered to allow it to sweep its neck across a large area of plants without having to actively walk to find new locations. The species varied in total size and specific aspects of the skull and skeleton, but they all have quadrupedalism, massive bodies, tiny heads, and long tails, which are classic sauropod characteristics. Its hind legs were longer than its front legs, and they were identical to Diplodocus‘ legs, its cranium, on the other hand, was box-shaped. They also had shoulders that were slightly higher than their hips. Starting at the middle of the tail, Mamenchisaurus has forked chevrons (or sled chevrons). According to current theories, the tip of the tail was adapted to serve as a weapon, as seen in other Asian sauropods like Shunosaurus. It’s possible that such a weapon was employed in a dominance battle between two males, but it’s also possible that it was used to defend against an attacking predator.
Mamenchisaurus is a genus of dinosaurs named after the great Chinese scientist Mamenchi. The genome’s base color is a blotchy greyish brown. The neck vertebrae had long struts running between them, limiting Mamenchisaurus’ ability to tilt its neck too forcefully.
This plant-eating creature possessed spatula-shaped teeth that appeared to be well-suited to chewing tough plant matter which was one attribute that distinguishes it from the other family members. To stay alive, it must have consumed a huge amount of plant matter every day. It consumed leaves whole, without digesting them, and gastroliths (stomach stones) may have been present in its stomach to aid digestion of this difficult plant material. It possessed blunt teeth that were good for removing leaves. Conifers were most likely its primary source of nutrition, with ginkgo, seed ferns, cycads, bennettitaleans, ferns, clubmosses, and horsetails could have been its secondary food sources. Mamenchisaurus may have travelled in herds and relocated when their local food supply became limited and like other sauropods, may have hatched from eggs. Sauropod eggs have been discovered in a straight line rather than in nests, implying that the eggs were laid while the animal was walking. Sauropods are assumed to have failed to care for their eggs. Its thought that Sauropods could have lived for hundreds of years.
|Lived:||Late Cretaceous, 99 – 94 million years ago|
|Weight:||3,000 – 5,000kg|
|Length||11.5 – 12.6m / 38 – 41ft|
FURTHER READING AND STUDY
- Coria and Currie (1997). A new theropod from the Río Limay Formation
- Coria and Currie (2006). A new carcharodontosaurid from the Upper Cretaceous of Argentina
- Paul (2010). The Princeton Field Guide to Dinosaurs
Mapusaurus (mah-puh-sore-us) is a combination of the Mapuche word for earth, and the Greek word for lizard. Mapusaurus was a huge carcharodontosaurid carnosaurian dinosaur that inhabited the terrestrial plains of South America during the Cretaceous period. Its fossils have been discovered in Argentina and it lived from 99.6 million years ago through the Turonian period. Mapusaurus roseae, the type species, is named after the rose-colored rocks where it was unearthed in a South American dig in 1995. The fact that fossil remains of Mapusaurus were discovered in a bone bed including at least seven individuals of various growth stages supports the theory that this dinosaur hunted in packs and lived in family groupings. Based on further isolated skeletal components for the type species, twelve paratypes have been defined.
Mapusaurus was almost the same size as its near relative Giganotosaurus, with the largest known specimens being over 10.2 meters (33 feet) in length and weighing around 3 metric tonnes (3.3 short tons). This dinosaur’s skull differs from Giganotosaurus in that it has thick, rugose unfused nasals that are narrower anterior to the nasal/maxilla/lacrimal junction; a larger extension of the antorbital fossa onto the maxilla; a smaller maxillary fenestra; a wider bar (interfenestral strut) between the antorbital and maxillary fenestrae. Mapusaurus’ teeth were similar to those of its relative Giganotosaurus in that they were flat, curved, and had a serrated edge, making them ideal for slicing into flesh. This is in contrast to Tyrannosaurus teeth, which are conical and smooth, an adaptation that is more suited to biting through bone. The discovery of the teeth has strengthened the theory that Mapusaurus preyed on dinosaurs with bones that were just too large to bite through, such as Argentinosaurus. If the pack hunting theory is correct, Mapusaurus may have used repeated bites to wear down an Argentinosaurus. These wounds would cause blood loss and infection, causing the massive dinosaurs to perish.
The Mapusaurus’ pointed, thin tail provided the dinosaur with a good sense of balance and the ability to sprint rapidly. It would have been quick and nimble. According to many paleontologists, the Mapusaurus could reach a top speed of 30 miles per hour (48.28 kph). This early Late Cretaceous dinosaur was a terrestrial creature that lived primarily in South American woods. Grasslands, shrublands, scrublands, tiny forests, and semi-arid regions are some of the additional habitats where this dinosaur’s fossil has been discovered. For their diet, they used to form small to medium packs to hunt larger meaty dinosaurs like the Argentinosaurus. It was thought that the Mapusaurus lived for 100 million years (Cenomanian of the Cretaceous). Although the exact date of their demise is unknown, they are thought to have died out 66 million years ago.
|Lived:||Late Jurassic, 154 -142 million years ago|
|Weight:||200kg / 440Ibs|
|Length||4.5m / 14.7ft|
FURTHER READING AND STUDY
- Stokes (1944). Jurassic dinosaurs from Emery County, Utah. Proceedings of the Utah
- Madsen (1976). A second new theropod dinosaur from the Late Jurassic of east central Utah.
- Chure & James (1993). New data on the theropod Marshosaurus from the Morrison Formation
Marshosaurus (marsh-oh-sore-us) was a genus of medium-sized carnivorous theropod dinosaurs that meant “marsh lizard.” It lived during the Jurassic period and roamed North America’s terrestrial areas. Its bones have been discovered in Utah and Colorado, and it lived between 157.3 million and 145 million years ago in Utah’s Late Jurassic Morrison Formation, and most likely Colorado’s as well. In the 1960s, thousands of fossil bones were discovered with theropod fossils, with the head, left ilium, pubic bone, ischia, six jaw fragments, and three ilia being among the Marshosaurus skeletal remains. One of these specimens was called Marshosaurus bicentesimus, the type species was named by Madsen in 1976.
Marshosaurus was a medium-sized predator, but it wasn’t the king of the jungle. Utah’s theropod dinosaurs preferred terrestrial environments. A series of alluvial and shallow marine deposits made up the Morison Formation, with sediments from east-facing drainage basins being carried by rivers and streams and deposited in lakes, swampy lowlands, floodplains, and river channels.
Marshosaurus (Utah) was a theropod of medium size, and this carnivore shared territory with the larger and more well-known Allosaurus. It measured around 4.5 meters in length and weighed 200 kg. This bipedal dinosaur had short arms, big skulls, were good hunters who enjoyed semi-arid climates as well. One autapomorphy discovered by paleontologists is a suture between the pubic bone and pubic peduncle that is concave in the back and convex in the front, curving upwards. The dorsal neural spines of Dinosaur National Monument’s CMNH 21704, a fragmentary skeleton, were found to be identical to those found in Cleveland-Lloyd Quarry. One of Marshosaurus bicentesimus’ right ilium was malformed, possibly as a result of an injury. A pathologic rib has been discovered in another fossil. Despite its diminutive size, it was designed to be tough. Its skull was fairly powerful and robust, and its humerus was short yet hefty (an arm bone). This indicates that it was well-suited to grabbing and physically subduing animals. These Utah species were carnivores who preyed on tiny dinosaurs.
The carnivorous dinosaurs of the Late Jurassic were oviparous in their reproduction. Marshosaurus bicentesimus (Madsen, 1976) was a Late Jurassic dinosaur that went extinct around 66 million years ago during the Cretaceous-Paleogene period.
|Lived:||Late Cretaceous, 70 million years ago|
|Weight:||20kg / 44Ibs|
|Length||2m / 6.7ft|
FURTHER RESEARCH AND STUDY
- Carrano et al., (2002). The Osteology of Masiakasaurus knopfleri, a Small Abelisauroid from the Late Cretaceous of Madagascar.
- Switek (2014). Masiakasaurus Gets a Few Touch-Ups
- Paul (2010). The Princeton Field Guide to Dinosaurs
Masiakasaurus (mah-shee-ah-kah-sore-us) is a genus of small predatory noasaurid theropod dinosaurs that means “vicious lizard.” It lived throughout the Cretaceous period and inhabited Madagascar’s terrestrial areas between 72.1 million and 66 million years ago. Masiakasurus remains were originally discovered in 2001, and the second set of remains was discovered in 2011.
Near the Berivotra, bone fragments accounting for around 40% of the Masiakasaurus skeleton were discovered. The Maevarano Formation has revealed various parts of the Masiakasaurus skull, notably its distinctive front teeth, which pointed forward and out of the mouth is its most remarkable trait. The front teeth also bend upwards at the tip, generating a hooking action. This would have substantially improved Masiakasaurus’ capacity to catch small, fast-moving prey. Masiakasaurus’ predatory nature is often shown as snatching fish from the water’s edge with specialized teeth.
Other bones discovered were the pubis, humerus, hind limbs, and several vertebrae. In 2011, some new specimens were described as Scientists defined the face bones, pectoral girdle, ribs, braincase, and some parts of the hands, dorsal vertebral column, and cervical region for the first time. Around 65 percent of the skeleton is now covered by the most recent skeleton material.
The fossil evidence implies that there were two types of Masiakasaurus, one of which was more solidly constructed and the other more nimble. It’s still unclear whether one is a subspecies of the other, or whether this is a case of sexual dimorphism in this dinosaur.
Masiakasaurus is known not only for its teeth but also for being named after musician Mark Knopfler. It was a tiny, bipedal, meat-eating dinosaur with a long neck, which other theropod dinosaurs lacked, and was around the size of a large dog. Aside from that, it had a rounded cranium and Scientists distinguished two types of Masiakasaurus in 2002, the first being a robust form and the second being a gracile form. The former comprised examples with denser bones and more prominent ridges for ligament and muscle attachment. Specimens in this category were thinner and had less prominent muscle connections. Furthermore, the gracile form possessed unfused tibiae, whereas the robust form possessed fused tibiae. These two sorts of specimens most likely showed the dinosaur’s sexual dimorphism, but they might possibly have represented two separate populations.
|Lived:||Early Jurassic, 200 – 183 million years ago|
|Weight:||1,000kg / 2,200Ibs|
|Length||4m / 13ft|
FURTHER READING AND STUDY
- Madison (2015). Study of Fossilized Massospondylus Dinosaur Embryos from South Africa
- Cooper (1980). The prosauropod dinosaur Massospondylus carinatus Owen from Zimbabwe: its biology, mode of life and phylogenetic significance
- Gow (1990). Morphology and growth of the Massospondylus braincase
The name massospondylus (mass-oh-SPON-di-luss) comes from the Greek words massn, which means “longer,” and spondylos, which means “vertebra,” forming huge vertebrae. Massospondylus is a herbivorous sauropodomorph dinosaur genus and it lived in Africa during the Jurassic period. Its fossils have been discovered in Zimbabwe Lesotho, Botswana, and Matabeleland North where it existed 228 million years ago to the Lower Jurassic Epoch. The Massospondylus dinosaur was first reported in 1854 and is regarded as one of the first dinosaurs to be named. Their tails were long, but their heads were little. The cheeks are an interesting feature of their structure. The scientist identified openings for blood veins in the jawbones, which are thought to be the gap in the cheeks.
Paleontologists have discovered 42 different specimens of this genus, which includes two type species, M. carinatus and M. kaalae. They grew up to 4-6 m in length, had a long tail, and weighed up to 1000 kg. The dinosaur had a small head and almost circular eye sockets, a slim body, and a long neck, with around nine long neck vertebrae, 13 dorsal vertebrae, three hip vertebrae, and at least 40 tail vertebrae. according to the fossils. The skull was quite small, measuring nearly half the length of the thigh, and the flexible neck dwarfed the rest of the body. In the upper jaw, the size of the teeth shrank from front to rear, with the back teeth being oval in shape, while the front teeth were spherical.
Surprisingly, the Arizona specimen’s skull is 25% larger than the largest skull found in any African species. Gastroliths have been discovered in the fossils of Massospondylus. There were also six 190-million-year-old Massospondylus eggs discovered. They are the world’s oldest dinosaur embryos and the near-hatchlings, in particular, lacked teeth, implying that they were unable to feed themselves and after-birth care, according to scientists, may have been required. The near-hatchlings’ four legs were all the same length, the tail was short, and the head was disproportionately large. This shows a different pattern of dinosaur evolution than previously imagined. It had a strong thumb claw on each of its forefeet, which it employed for protection or feeding, and according to recent research, Massospondylus expanded steadily throughout its life and had air sacs similar to those found in birds.
Massospondylus had well-developed clavicles that were connected in a furcula-like structure, implying that it had immovable shoulder blades and that clavicles were not rudimentary and nonfunctional in dinosaurs without real furculae. This research also suggests that clavicles are the source of bird furcula. Although Massospondylus was once thought to be quadrupedal, it was discovered to be bipedal in a 2007 study. Its long neck would allow it to access higher sources of vegetation, such as trees and other higher sources of vegetation, and feed on ferns and conifers. They became extinct somewhere between 200 and 183 million years ago.
|Lived:||Late Cretaceous, 80 million years ago|
|Length||13 – 20m / 43 – 66ft|
FURTHER READING AND STUDY
- Kellner et al., (2006). On a new titanosaur sauropod from the Bauru Group, Late Cretaceous of Brazil
- Marco et al., (2016). New lower jaw and teeth referred to Maxakalisaurus topai and their implications for the phylogeny of titanosaurid sauropods.
- Santucci & Bertini (2006). A large sauropod titanosaur from Peirópolis, Bauru Group, Brazil
Maxakalisaurus (max-aka-li-sore-us) commonly known as “Maxakali lizard”, a titanosaur herbivorous dinosaur genus named for a Topa divinity, is a genus of titanosaurs. It lived during the Cretaceous period and roamed South America’s terrestrial areas. Its fossils have been discovered in places like Minas Gerais, Brazil (Brazil), and roamed the earth from 83.5 million years ago until 66 million years ago. The Maxakalisaurus is one of these dinosaurs that lived in the Bauru Group (Late Cretaceous) of the Adamantia Formation in Sao Paulo, Brazil. A partial skeleton of Maxakalisaurus has been discovered, which includes several skull pieces and osteoderms (large skin adornments). It had ridged teeth, which were rare for sauropods. Teeth marks can be found on several of the bones, indicating scavenging activity.
The beast from Minas Gerais, Brazil, had a cervical skeleton, 12 neck vertebrae, and seven cervical ribs, according to a phylogenetic study. The spine is made up of these seven cervical ribs. Six tail vertebrae, hip bones, footbones, a thigh, both upper ‘arm’ bones, and a single armor plate were also present. In addition, the partial skeleton discovered in Brazil has sternal plates in its throat. It was classified as a sauropod, but it was unique in that it had evolved more defensive traits, such as bony plates on its skin and vertical plates running the length of its spine. The sole skeletal remains were a fragmentary skeleton with the lower jaw and teeth, an incomplete right maxilla (with teeth), a few limb vertebrae, and cervical vertebrae. The skull length was unknown; nevertheless, the jaw was enlarged rather than the skull, which is a frequent Sauropoda characteristic. It possessed a long neck with vertical plates along its spine and bony plates on its skin.
Maxakalisaurus was an estimated 13 meters long and weighed 9 tons and although isolated, specimens of other dinosaurs suggested that many may grow larger. Maxakalisaurus is one of the largest dinosaurs known to have lived in Brazil with the tropical forests and Brazilian grassland, making it an ideal natural environment for Maxakalisaurus. They thrived in wetlands and marshy environments, such as lowlands with flowing streams nearby. They were also likely to live in rocky areas.
The Saurischia dinosaur existed in Brazil’s central region and for many other sauropods, the location they lived in was ideal. They were sociable, to say the least and the average lifespan of a Maxakalisaurus was 30-50 years. In the nesting site, it would have laid 15-40 eggs and usually, the eggs were laid by burrowing in the dirt and as a result, the eggs were half-buried until they hatched. The gestation period was 65-82 days long and it was a herbivorous dinosaur that ate conifers, which were the main vegetation during the time of the giant sauropods. The Maxakalisaurus went extinct around 145-66 million years ago, during the Santonian stage of the Cretaceous period.
Megalosaurus (MEG-ah-low-sore-us) is a genus of large theropod dinosaur. It lived in the Bathonian to Kimmeridgian stage during the Middle Jurassic Period of Europe, Southern England, France and Portugal around 166 million years ago.
Megalosaurus measured 30 feet (9 metres) in length, 10 feet (3 metres) in height and weighed around 1 ton. It had a very large head, powerful jaws and large sharp serrated teeth. Megalosaurus was a bipedal dinosaur, with a large bulky body and walked on its muscular, strong hind legs using its large, heavy, stiff tail for counter-balance. Megalosaurus was a relatively fast runner.
The structure of the cervical vertebrae suggests that its neck would have been very flexible. Like all theropods, it had 3 forward facing toes and a single reversed one. Although they had not reached the minuscule size of later theropods like Tyrannosaurus, the fore limbs of Megalosaurus were small and probably had 3 or 4 clawed digits on each hand.
Melanorosaurus (me-lan-or-oh-sore-us) is a genus of sauropod dinosaur that lived in the Carnian or Norian stages, during the Late Triassic Period, 227 to 221 million years ago, in Cape Province, South Africa. Melanorosaurus is one of the first Prosauropods to be discovered. It was once considered to have been a Prosauropod, but is today widely considered to be one of the earliest Sauropod dinosaurs.
Melanorosaurus measured around 26 feet (8 metres) in length and weighed around 1 ton. It had a large bulky body and sturdy, thick-set limbs that supported its huge size. It was a quadrupedal dinosaur and moved around on all 4 limbs. Like most sauropod vertebrae, its spinal bones had hollows that helped reduce weight. Melanorosaurus had a triangular shaped skull which measured 250 millimetres, small eyes and a snout that pointed outwards. It would have had many peg-like teeth to chew plant material with.
Melanorosaurus was a herbivore. This dinosaur probably used its great size and long neck to eat high growing plants and vegetation. It would have eaten a huge amount of plant material to sustain its massive size.
|Lived:||Late Jurassic, 160 million years ago|
|Length||8m / 26ft|
FURTHER READING AND STUDY
- Tyrannosaur (2011). Metriacanthosaurus parkeri
- Paul (1988). Predatory Dinosaurs of the World
- Huene (1923). Carnivorous Saurischia in Europe since the Triassic
Metriacanthosaurus (met-ree-a-kan-tho-sore-us) was a medium-sized theropod carnivorous dinosaur that was also known as the “moderately-spined lizard.” It lived during the Jurassic period and roamed Europe’s terrestrial areas and existed between the Oxfordian and Kimmeridgian periods. Paleontologists have discovered only one specimen, which includes remnants of the hip, a leg bone, and vertebral fragments, and because Metriacanthosaurus is only known from a fragmentary postcranial skeleton, reconstructions are dependent on speculation. The backbones of Metriacanthosaurus feature spines on top that are higher than those of many meat-eaters, earning it the name. Its femur is 31 inches long, and its length, height, and weight have been estimated to be 10.5 meters long, 2 meters tall at the hips (this makes it almost two times smaller than the brown bear), and weigh one metric ton.
Like other dinosaurs, the Metriacanthosaurus would have had a small and deep head with long, curved fangs that were great for grabbing enormous prey. Theropod dinosaur feet, like those of other Theropod dinosaurs, would have been huge and they were also bipedal, with powerful rear legs and smaller front legs. The dinosaur’s front legs resembled little hands with teeny fingers and each of his three fingers had a claw of average size. It had a massive head with strong, serrated teeth, which was typical of a medium-sized theropo and these teeth would be replaced as they fall out during their lives. It had little triangular crests over the eyes, which were probably for display and might be utilized for species identification. It had a distinctive profile because its jaws were shorter and blunter.. Meanwhile, the legs were significantly more strong, allowing them to go at a fair speed. It had four toes on each foot, with the innermost being a reduced dewclaw that did not contact the ground. The remaining three toes had talons that were short yet thick. Despite its size, Metriacanthosaurus may attain speeds of up to 20 miles per hour, it had strong reflexes and could have outrun other predators, much like any other carnivore.
Metriacanthosaurus had a thin, delicate coat of simple feather quills all over its body, especially on its head and arms. Because they were medium-sized predators, they primarily lived on land and preferred densely vegetated places because there were more herbivorous dinosaurs for the Metriacanthosaurus to eat. This species was ferocious and vicious, and it was not sociable in the least and as a result, the dinosaur coexisted with its own breed of carnivorous medium-sized dinosaurs. It hunted in groups or herds to make prey hunting easier and they snuck up on their victims through the dense forests and jungles. Its major sources of food were other dinosaurs and some marine reptiles that swam close to the coast.
The Metricanthosaurus was one of the earliest dinosaurs to be found with venom, which it used in battle. The Metriacanthosaurus was short and had a short body,. This species lived around 160 million years ago during the late Jurassic period, which indicates they died out long before the dinosaur era ended.
Image source: Microceratus by cisiopurple
|Lived:||Late Cretaceous, 66 million years ago|
|Weight:||3 – 10kgs|
|Length||60cm / 1.96ft|
FURTHER READING AND STUDY
Microceratus (mike-row-ker-ah-tuss) was a genus of small ceratopsian herbivorous dinosaurs that were also known as “little horned” and lived in Asia some 90 million years ago during the Cretaceous epoch. Its fossils have been discovered in China’s Inner Mongolia and Gansu (China) and Microceratus is a genus of tiny dinosaurs belonging to the Ceratopsia suborder.
This bipedal dinosaur had short arms, a ceratopsian frill, and a sharp beak-like mouth and was one of Mongolia’s first horned dinosaur groups. Microceratops gobiensis and Microceratus sulcidens are the two species in this genus and many scientists believe that these species’ bodies could change color to mix in with their surroundings. Microceratus was first dubbed Microceratops in 1953 when incomplete bones were unearthed in Mongolia’s Gobi Desert. Microceratus dinosaurs were up to 3 feet long, 1.5 feet tall, and weighed only 1.8 kilograms.
It has a huge, thick cranium and a heavily beaked mouth. The beak is toothless, but the jaws have teeth at the back that are used to smash plant debris. The head is devoid of horns, although it does sport a pair of small epijugals, or cheek horns, one on each side; this trait may be found in later ceratopsians. The head frill is proportionally smaller than that of later ceratopsians, and it lacks epoccipitals as well as horns. While the dinosaur’s skull is tough and protective, its small size makes it vulnerable to most predators although it could run bipedally and could also switch to quadruped mode and go down on all fours if necessary. Each foot has three toes, and each hand has four short fingers, and it has arms that are about half the length of its legs and a tail that is about the same length as its body. The limbs are small and wiry, and the tail is relatively deep, counterbalancing the head. This is an animal that has evolved to forage on forest floors and meadows, sprint at a reasonable speed, and escape being eaten by using evasive motions.
Microceratus ceratopsians were found in a variety of terrestrial forest environments. Microceratus dinosaurs ate herbivorous plants and the diet of these herbivorous dinosaurs consisted of leaves and plants. They could have chopped through needles and leaves with their pointed beak. Also, because flowering plants were limited geographically throughout their time period, they may have fed on cycads, conifers, and ferns that were there. These creatures spent the majority of their time on trees, according to Michael Crichton’s novel “Jurassic Park.” The scientific community, on the other hand, has yet to prove this theory. Around 66 million years ago, a major extinction event wiped out these Cretaceous ceratopsian dinosaurs.
Image source: Micropachycephalosaurus by cisiopurple
|Lived:||Late Cretaceous, 84 – 71 million years ago|
|Weight:||3 – 10kgs|
|Length||2.3 – 4.5m / 7.5 – 15ft|
FURTHER READING AND STUDY
- Dong (1978). A new genus of Pachycephalosauria from Laiyang, Shantung
- Sullivan (2006). A taxonomic review of the Pachycephalosauridae
- Butler & Zhao (2009). The small-bodied ornithischian dinosaurs Micropachycephalosaurus hongtuyanensis and Wannanosaurus yansiensis from the Late Cretaceous of China.
Micropachycephalosaurus is a dinosaur that lived in the Cretaceous period (mike-row-pak-ee-keff-ah-loh-sore-us) the term micro, pachy, cephalo, and saurus comes from Greek roots and means “little thick-headed lizard.” The ornithischian herbivorous dinosaur Micropachycephalosaurus is a monotypic genus. During the Late Cretaceous epoch, it lived in Shandong Province, China, and populated Asia’s cliffs from 89.8 million years ago until 83.6 million years ago. Despite the fact that Micropachycephalosaurus is one of the smallest dinosaurs known to science, it has one of the longest names, and is not a member of the Pachycephalosauria, as was previously assumed.
Micropachycephalosaurus measures 17 inches (4.18 cm) in length and 7.8-11.8 inches (20-30 cm) in height. It had an 8-inch tail that was about half the length of its body (20.3 cm), and weighed between 5 and 10 pounds (2.26-4.5 kg). The Micropachycephalosaurus was a fast runner, and because they were so little, the only defense they had against larger carnivorous dinosaurs was to flee. Their small size and light weight allowed them to achieve agility.
It has a rough, lumpy skin with scales that are greenish-yellow in hue. On its back and flanks, the dinosaur bears a white stripe that runs the length of its body. It was once thought to be a Pachycephalosauria member, but it lacked the characteristic feature of a dome-shaped enlarged cranium. There was no way to show that they had a thicker skull like other Pachycephalosaur dinosaurs because no complete skull or fossil was available, hence they were not proven to be directly related. It was quite little, with a tail that was about half as long as its whole length and was a two-legged dinosaur. Given that it was a herbivorous dinosaur, it is reasonable to assume that it had small teeth for chewing its food.
Micropachycephalosaurus ate mostly plants and so it preferred to live in inhabited areas with abundant flora, such as natural forests and grasslands. The Micropachycephalosaurus ate only plants. As part of their usual diet, they most likely ate a variety of vegetables, fruits, and seeds. They had a row of little sharp teeth in their jaw, like most herbivores, that helped them eat a variety of foods. Even though they were bipedal dinosaurs, they often ate or foraged on all fours in their natural habitat.
The skull was tiny, with a long, narrow nose, and the mouth was triangular and projected forward. Micropachycephalosaurus are oviparous, meaning they can lay up to 21 eggs, which hatch after a period of incubation. They weren’t particularly aggressive because they were little dinosaurs, they were more likely to fall prey to larger dinosaurs. Rather than aggressive tactics, they possessed well-developed defense strategies. They fled away at the first sight of danger since they were so quick and agile. When a meteor struck the Earth 66 million years ago, the Micropachycephalosaurus became extinct.
Microraptor (MY-crow-rap-tore) was a genus of small, dromaeosaurid dinosaur that lived in the Aptian stage during the Early Cretaceous period, 130 – 125 million years ago, in the woodlands of China, Asia. Microraptor was among the smallest known dinosaurs. Apart from its extremely small size, Microraptor was among the first non-avian dinosaurs discovered with the impressions of feathers and wings.
Microraptor was a small dinosaur and measured 2.5 feet (77 centimetres) in length and weighed 2 – 3 pounds. Like Archaeopteryx, it demonstrates the close evolutionary relationship between birds and dinosaurs, as it had long primitive, pennaceous (not downy) feathers on its limbs and body and had a diamond shaped fan on the end of its tail, possibly for added stability during flight. Microraptor had 2 sets of wings, on both its fore limbs and hind limbs. In addition to the long pennaceous feathers on arms and hands that measured between 10 and 20 centimetres long, legs and feet 11 – 15 centimetres long and towards the tail end, Microraptor was covered in shorter downy (plumulaceous) feathers measuring between 2 and 6 centimetres long.
LadyofHats, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
|Lived:||Early Cretaceous, 133 – 120 million years ago|
|Weight:||300kgs / 660Ibs|
|Length||3m / 9.8ft|
FURTHER READING AND STUDY
- Molnar (1980). An ankylosaur (Ornithischia: Reptilia) from the Lower Cretaceous of southern Queensland
- Lucy et al., (2015). Cranial osteology of the ankylosaurian dinosaur formerly known as Minmi sp. from the Lower Cretaceous Allaru Mudstone of Richmond, Queensland, Australia
- Molnar (1996). Preliminary report on a new ankylosaur from the Early Cretaceous of Queensland, Australia”
Minmi (min-mie) was a tiny herbivorous ankylosaurian dinosaur named after Minmi Crossing in Queensland with its fossils being discovered in places like Victoria, Australia, and Queensland Australia (Australia), and it lived during the Cretaceous epoch from 139.8 million years ago to the Albian Age. This dinosaur was identified by an almost complete skeleton discovered in northwest Queensland in 1990, complete with armor, and estimated to be the size of a yearling cow. Minmi Crossing is a location near where the first sections of it were unearthed in the 1960s. Minmi’s skin was armored, with enormous scutes like a crocodile’s and pea-sized bones embedded throughout.
It was the first ankylosaur discovered in the Southern Hemisphere and appears to have been one of the more successful species of its period. Minmi’s type specimen has 11 vertebrae, at least 14 rib fragments, some armour plate, and a half foot. Minmi was the only ankylosaur with short, backwardly directed bony extensions (paravertebrae, or ossified tendons) along the backbone that provided additional attachment for back muscles. These resembled the bone structures found in crocodiles that help to support and strengthen the back during the ‘high walk.’ These paravertebrae, along with Minmi’s extraordinarily large legs, show that Minmi may have outrun some predators rather than relying only on armour for protection. Minmi wore armour on her belly, as well as protection on her neck and trunk but lacked a clubbed tail and lacked dermal armor on the head, unlike practically all other ankylosaurs. Minmi had four long (for an ankylosaurian) legs with larger rear legs than front legs, a short neck, and a broad cranium with a small brain. The dinosaur was around 10 feet (3 meters) long, 3 feet (1 meter) tall at the shoulder, and weighed about 300 kilograms. Scientists discovered that Minmi moved slowly on four legs based on fossilized traces, its estimated mass, and leg length. Some argue that it had a lower intelligence than the other dinosaurs at the time.
It can be found in a mix of floodplains and forests, according to the environment. Minmi was discovered in marine sediments, but it was most likely washed out to sea from the neighboring terrestrial environment. It ate blooming plant seeds and fruiting bodies, as well as ferns and other soft-leaved plants and after nibbling the foliage off with its beak, it may have sliced its food using its serrated cheek teeth. After then, the meal would be in the mouth (possibly helped by development of fleshy cheeks). Minmi had lengthy limbs, which she may have used to quickly look for protection beneath brush when confronted by huge predators capable of flipping the small animal on its back.
Monolophosaurus (MON-oh-LOAF-oh-SORE-us) was a carnosaur that lived in the Bathonian – Callovian stages, during the Late Jurassic, about 180 – 159 million years ago, in the Shishugou Formation, China. It was named for the single crest on top of its skull. The area that Monolophosaurus was found showed signs of water, so it is possible that this dinosaur lived on the shore of lakes or ocean. Monolophosaurus may be related to the allosaurids.
Monolophosaurus measured around 16 feet (5 metres) in length, 6 feet in height and weighed 700 kilograms (1,500 pounds). It was a bipedal dinosaur and walked on its 2 hind legs. It had powerful, long hind legs and short fore limbs that were all equipped with sharp claws. Its long, stiff pointed tail was heavy and probably used as a counter-balance. Monolophosaurus had a large head that featured a single prominent crest on the top. The crest was used as a dominant characteristic. The bigger the crest, the easier it would have been to mate with females.
|Lived:||Late Cretaceous, 70 million years ago|
|Weight:||3.5kgs / 7.7Ibs|
|Length||1 – 1.2m / 3.3 – 3.9ft|
FURTHER READING AND STUDY
- Phil Senter (2005). Function in the Stunted Forelimbs of Mononykus olecranus (Theropoda), a Dinosaurian Anteater
- Perle and Chiappe (1994). Skeletal morphology of Mononykus olecranus
- Perle and Norell (1993). Flightless bird from the Cretaceous of Mongolia
Mononykus (mono-Nike-us) was a carnivorous theropod dinosaur with a single claw. It lived during the Cretaceous epoch and roamed Asia’s deserts with its fossils having been discovered in Mongolian towns such as Bayankhongor and mnögovi, and it lived between 83.6 million and 66 million years ago. Mononykus refers to the enormous thumb claw, which measured seven and a half centimeters in length. Paleontologists discovered the Mononykus in Mongolia’s Negemt formation in 1987, with a partial fossil consisting of fractured skull bones Partial anterior skeleton lacking the tail, and a complete braincase. Overall, palaeontologists uncovered 5 separate specimens. This Theropod featured unusual forelimbs with one long claw and long, thin legs, as well as a tubed snout and flightless feathers like birds.
The claw is thought to have helped the dinosaur dig burrows or dig into anthills, implying that the dinosaur’s diet was mostly insectivorous. Mononykus was believed to be roughly 1-1.2 m long, somewhat smaller than a moray eel, and 1.5 m tall, and it weighed around 3.5-4 kg, which is about the same weight as a mature female peacock. They were created for swift running, comparable to the Shuvuuia, based on the anatomy of their hind legs and their length. A partial skeleton consisting of a fragmentary skull bone with a braincase has been used to define members of this genus. Mononykus claws were thought to be weird and unusual and its stubby forelimbs each had one huge claw measuring up to three inches in length. During the examination, it revealed a keeled breastbone, fused wrist bone, triangular pubic bone, and various sized toe bones. Their cranium featured a tubular, long snout with teeth on the inside, which was thought to have been employed similarly to how modern anteaters use their snouts. Their hind limbs were long and slender, and their arm and breast muscles were massive. Furthermore, fossils with feathery structures were discovered, and microscopic research revealed that they were made of beta-keratin, a fundamental protein present in bird feathers. These animals, on the other hand, were unable to fly.
It walked on two legs, was nimble, and could run at high speeds, which would have been advantageous in the broad desert plains where it resided. It possessed a tiny skull and short, pointed teeth, indicating that it preyed on insects and small creatures like lizards and mammals. Mononykus’ huge eyes may have aided it to hunt at night, when it was colder and there were less predators around. Potential threats to Mononykus may include dromaeosaurids like Adasaurus, and troodonts like Zanabazar. This little Late Cretaceous dinosaur is thought to have died out around 70 million years ago.
Mussaurus (moos-SORE-us) was a genus of prosauropod dinosaur that lived in the Norian Age, during the Late Triassic Period, around 221 – 210 million years ago, in Santa Cruz, Southern Argentina which was desert-like at that time. Mussaurus is a very early dinosaur. It gets its name from the small size of the skeletons discovered so far. Mussaurus lived at the same time as Eoraptor, Riojasaurus, Coloradisaurus, Frenguellisaurus, Herrerasaurus, Ischisaurus, Pisanosaurus and Staurikosaurus.
Mussaurus measured 20 feet (6 metres) in length, 10 feet (3 metres) in height and weighed 1,000 kilograms (2,200 pounds). It was a bipedal dinosaur and walked on 2 strong hind legs although it could also walk on all fours. Mussaurus had a large body, a long neck and a long, pointed tail that would have been used as a counter-balance. Its snout was long and its head was quite small but it had large eye sockets. Its hind legs were slightly longer than the fore legs. Its legs and hands were equipped with 5 clawed fingers with a large thumb claw. Mussaurus had leaf-shaped or spoon-like teeth.
NobuTamura email:email@example.com palaeocritti, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
|Lived:||Early Cretaceous, 107 – 103 million years ago|
|Length||8m / 26ft|
Muttaburrasaurus (Mutt-ah-burr-ah-sore-uss) was a ornithopod dinosaur that lived in the Albion stage, during the Middle Cretaceous Period, 100 – 98 million years ago, of what is now northeastern Australia. Muttaburrasaurus was related to Camptosaurus and Iguanodon. Other than its curved beak-like mouth, Muttaburrasaurus was a typical iguanodontid.
Muttaburrasaurus measured 26 feet (8 metres) in length and weighed around 3 tons. It was a bipedal dinosaur and walked around on its 2 powerful hind legs, however, it was also capable of quadrupedal stance, grazing on all 4 limbs. The 3 middle digits of the fore limb were joined together into a hoof-like pad for walking on. It also had a spiked thumb, which was about 15 centimetres long. Muttaburrasaurus had very powerful jaws equipped with shearing teeth. It also had an enlarged, hollow, upward-bulging muzzle on its long snout, between its eyes, that might have been used to produce sounds or for display purposes or to improve its sense of smell. Muttaburrasaurus had a long neck and head and a long, stiff, pointed tail which could have been used as a counter-balance.
Last Updated on 15/07/2022 by admin