Stegosaurus was one of the most famous dinosaurs, probably because it was one of the first dinosaurs to be discovered. And because it looked like a living fortress with its plates and spikes on its tail! It surely knew how to protect itself from potential predators. Stegosaurus used its tail spikes as a deadly weapon but also had a pretty mean bite!
Stegosaurus has one of the most distinctive skeletons among all dinosaurs because it is so heavily armored.
But what do you really know about this dinosaur? Here are some facts!
Did you know that:
- Stegosaurus comes from the greek and means “roof-lizard”. Of course, this is a reference to the plates on its back that looked like a roof. Stegosaurus had two rows of bony plates along its back, and on its tail, Stegosaurus had four pairs of spikes.
- The large spikes on its tail could be used for self-defense to protect itself from predators, it would whip its tail from side to side in a swift motion to injure the attacker.
- Stegosaurus was a herbivore and would eat a plant-based diet. This dinosaur had a small head with jaws lined with rows of sharp leaf-shaped teeth. These teeth were ideal for grinding up plants. But make no mistakes – a bite would still hurt. So, if you ever see one, don’t touch it!
- Then again, the Chances of seeing a living stegosaurus are quite low. They all became extinct 150 million years ago, long before the asteroid wiped out the rest of his dinosaur friends. Bummer!
- It lived during the same period with dinosaurs like the Brachiosaurus, Diplodocus, and Allosaurus.
- Its fossil remains were found in North America and Portugal.
- This dinosaur could grow up 9 meters (=30 feet)and reach a bodyweight of 7 tons, which is a little heavier than an African Elephant, the heaviest of all land-living mammals.
- Had four legs and a bulky body, an armored neck and spiked tail, short forelimbs, five toes on each foot, and a small head with jaws lined with rows of sharp teeth.
- Popular culture and art sometimes depict Stegosaurus being attacked by a Tyrannosaurus Rex. These two lived about 70 million years apart, and a fight like that never happened.
- It had a tiny brain (compared to its body).