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Spinosaurus means “spine lizard” because the dinosaur has long spines on its back that has a snail or humpback structure. The Spinosaurus dinosaurs became Earth inhabitant during the Middle Cretaceous period, around 100 million years ago in North Africa areas. The Spinosaurus species were huge creatures and considered the biggest carnivorous dinosaur, bigger than Tyrannosaurus.
See the fact file below for more information on the Spinosaurus or alternatively, you can download our 25-page Spinosaurus worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
History & Taxonomic Details
- Spinosaurus Meaning
- The name Spinosaurus (spin·o·saur·us/pronounced SPINE-oh-SORE-us) comesfrom the Latin word spina meaning thorn and Greek word saurus meaning lizard.
- Fossils Discovery
- The first Spinosaurus fossil was discovered in the Bahariya valley in Egypt in 1912 and was named three years later by German paleontologist Ernst Stromer in 1915.
- The fossil was displayed in a museum in Munich, Germany but was destroyed by a bombing raid in 1944 during the World War II. This type of species was known as S. Aegyptiacus.
- The second fossil was discovered in the Kem Kem Basin of Morocco and his species was known as S. Maroccanus.
- The Spanish paleontologist Cristiano Dal Sasso found the largest specimenof Spinosaurus in 2005. He discovered almost complete upper jaw about 5.7 feet (1.75 meters) in length.
- This specimen had well-preserved teeth. Dr. Nizar Ibrahim and Dr. Paul Sereno presented the latest discovery of this species in 2005 also in Morocco.
- Height and Weight
- Spinosaurus was considered as one of the biggest carnivorous dinosaurs and believed to be even bigger than Giganotosaurus, Tyrannosaurus, and Carcharodontosaurus.
- Paleontologist estimated Spinosaurus was around 49 feet (15 meters) length and 4 meters) in height. It weighed between 5 to 20 tons (5,000 kilograms to 20,000 kilograms).
- Since its discovery, there were six specimens studied and described.
- Specimen studied in the year 2005, 2007 and 2008 suggested that it was between 41 feet to 59 feet (12.6 meters-18 meters)in length and 7 tons to 20 tons in weight.
- Paleontologists studied another specimen in the year 2014 and 2018 based on a more complete specimen. The result supported the previous estimates, and it showed that spinosaurus could reach 49 feet to 52 feet (15 meters to 16 meters)in length and a weight of 6.4 tons to 7.5 tons.
- Future specimens might incomplete still but reported being similar in size.
- Spinosaurus had an enormous skull that measured six feet long.
- It had a narrow, thin, andlong skull with a mouth similar to that of a crocodile. This crocodile-like snout had a tip with tiny holes and pits with nerves on it.
- They used it to sense water pressure.
- It had straight teeth that looks like a knife. The spinosaurus used their teeth in hunting preys, such as small animals, fish, smaller dinosaurs, and even large dinosaurs.
- Spinosaurus had distinctive long projection spines called neural spines.
- This spines were also referred to as “sails”. Spinosaurus used this sail to protect them from enemies, as it would make them appeared twice its size because of this snail. Another noted use of this snail was to attract a mate.
- The spines grew up to 5 feet (1.5 meters) long or more.
- Paleontologists believed the spines supported the muscles inside it.
- These muscles look like a large hump as that of the camel.
Spinosaurus as Advanced Theropod
- Spinosaurus was a theropod, meaning it walked on two legs. It walked on its back legs since it had short front legs. Even if spinosaurus was bipedal, research suggested that it may sometimes walk on all four legs.
- Spinosaurus was regarded as an intelligent animal as evident on its brain size to body mass.
- Paleontologists believed that Spinosaurus lived near water and land along with other top predators like Bahariasaurus and Carcharodontosaurus in what is now northern Africa.
- Spinosaurus lived mostly in mangrove swamps and other humid habitats where they could hunt down lobe-finned fish, sawfish,groupers and small crocodiles.
- Spinosaurus was mainly a carnivore and piscivore.
- It was a top predator that has a mouth resemblance with that of a crocodile.
- It had straight teeth like knives different from curved teeth of other carnivorous dinosaurs.
- Its teeth were perfect for spearing and holding slippery preys like fish. The fish scales found at its rib cage specim was evidence that it had a bulk diet of fish.
- Spinosaurus replaced Tyrannosaurus as the main antagonist.
- According to the film’s consulting paleontologist, John Horner, based on spinosaurus size, it is a unique creature, and no other animal is similar to it.
- He said in his hypothesis, spinosaurus was a predator, unlike, T-rex that was a scavenger.
- It was depicted in the movie how strong and powerful the spinosaurus after winning a fight against tyrannosaurus.
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the Spinosaurus across 25 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Spinosaurus worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about the Spinosaurus which means “spine lizard” because the dinosaur has long spines on its back that has a snail or humpback structure. The Spinosaurus dinosaurs became Earth inhabitant during the Middle Cretaceous period, around 100 million years ago in North Africa areas. The Spinosaurus species were huge creatures and considered the
biggest carnivorous dinosaur, bigger than Tyrannosaurus.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Spinosaurus Facts
- Taxonomic Details
- Amazing Dino
- Word Seek
- Spine Lizard’s Info
- Fill in the Facts
- Meet The Spinosaurus
- Let’s Get Physical
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Use With Any Curriculum
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