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Portal:Dinosaurs

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The Dinosaur Portal

Triceratops prorsus old skull002.png

Introduction

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Dinosaurs are animals that dominated terrestrial environments for more than 160 million years, first appearing approximately 230 million years ago. They were extremely varied, abundant and have been found preserved on all seven modern continents. At the end of the Cretaceous period, approximately 66 million years ago, a catastrophic extinction event ended the dinosaurs' dominance on land. However, since birds are theropods the clade dinosauria still survives in great diversity and abundance. The term "dinosaur" is sometimes used mistakenly to describe other prehistoric animals, such as the synapsid Dimetrodon, or reptiles like pterosaurs, ichthyosaurs, plesiosaurs and mosasaurs. Since the first dinosaur fossils were recognized in the nineteenth century, mounted dinosaur skeletons have become major attractions at museums around the world and have amassed a large fan base among children and adults alike. They have been featured in best-selling books and films such as Jurassic Park, and new discoveries are regularly covered by the media.
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Edmontosaurus skeleton
Edmontosaurus (meaning 'Edmonton [Formation] lizard') is a genus of crestless duck-billed dinosaur. The fossils of this animal have been found in rocks of western North America that date from the late Campanian stage to the end of the Maastrichtian stage of the Cretaceous Period, between 73 and 65.5 million years ago. It was one of the last non-avian dinosaurs, and lived alongside Triceratops and Tyrannosaurus shortly before the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event. Edmontosaurus was one of the largest hadrosaurids, measuring up to 13 meters (43 ft) long and weighing around 4.0 metric tons (4.4 short tons). It is known from several well-preserved specimens that include not only bones, but in some cases extensive skin impressions and possible gut contents.

Edmontosaurus has a lengthy and complicated taxonomic history dating to the late 19th century. Various species classified with genera such as Claosaurus, Thespesius, Trachodon, and the well-known but now defunct genus Anatosaurus are now regarded as belonging to Edmontosaurus. The first fossils named Edmontosaurus were discovered in southern Alberta, Canada, in what used to be called the lower Edmonton Formation. The type species, E. regalis, was named by Lawrence Lambe in 1917, although several other species that are now classified in Edmontosaurus were named earlier. The best known of these is E. annectens, originally named by Othniel Charles Marsh in 1892 as Claosaurus annectens and known for many years as Anatosaurus annectens.

Edmontosaurus was widely distributed across western North America. The distribution of Edmontosaurus fossils suggests that it preferred coasts and coastal plains. It was an herbivore that could move on both two legs and four. Because it is known from several bone beds, Edmontosaurus is thought to have lived in groups, and may have been migratory as well. The wealth of fossils has allowed researchers to study its paleobiology in detail, including its brain, how it may have fed, and its injuries and pathologies, such as evidence for a tyrannosaur attack on one edmontosaur specimen. (see more...)

Topics

Dinosaur-related topics - Dinosaur - Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event - Dinosaur-bird connection - Dinosaur classification - Evolution of dinosaurs - Feathered dinosaurs - List of dinosaurs - Paleontology - Physiology of dinosaurs
Locations - List of dinosaur-bearing rock formations - List of fossil sites - Dinosaur Cove - Dinosaur National Monument - Dinosaur Park Formation - Hell Creek Formation - Morrison Formation - Red Gulch Dinosaur Tracksite - Two Medicine Formation
Paleontologists - Mary Anning - Robert T. Bakker - Barnum Brown - William Buckland - Edward Drinker Cope - Jack Horner - Gideon Mantell - Othniel Charles Marsh - John Ostrom - Dong Zhiming - Philip J. Currie
History - List of years in paleontology - Bone Wars - Dinosaur Renaissance
Popular culture - List of dinosaur parks - Cultural depictions of dinosaurs - Jurassic Park - Jurassic Park (film) - Raptor Red
Featured dinosaur articles - Achelousaurus - Acrocanthosaurus - Albertosaurus - Allosaurus - Amargasaurus - Ankylosaurus - Apatosaurus - Archaeopteryx - Baryonyx - Bone Sharps, Cowboys, and Thunder Lizards - Bone Wars - Carnotaurus - Chicxulub crater - Compsognathus - Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event - Daspletosaurus - Deinocheirus - Deinonychus - Dinosaur - Diplodocus - Edmontosaurus - Edward Drinker Cope - Giganotosaurus - Gorgosaurus - Herrerasaurus - Heterodontosaurus - Iguanodon - Lambeosaurus - List of dinosaurs - Majungasaurus - Massospondylus - Nemegtomaia - Nigersaurus - Opisthocoelicaudia - Paranthodon - Parasaurolophus - Plateosaurus - Psittacosaurus - Stegoceras - Stegosaurus - Styracosaurus - Tarbosaurus - Thescelosaurus - Triceratops - Tyrannosaurus - Velociraptor
Good dinosaur articles Abelisauridae - Alioramus - Ampelosaurus - Amphicoelias - "Archaeoraptor" - Balaur bondoc - Cairanoolithus - Ceratopsia - Coelurus - Corythosaurus - Cetiosauriscus - Cryolophosaurus - Cultural depictions of dinosaurs - Dinheirosaurus - Eolambia - Gryposaurus - Heterodontosauridae - Kentrosaurus - Kritosaurus - Hypacrosaurus - Hypsibema missouriensis - Limusaurus - Macroolithus - Megalosaurus - Othnielosaurus - Pachycephalosaurus - Patagosaurus - Prosaurolophus - Rajasaurus - Saurolophus - Sauropelta - Scelidosaurus - Sinoceratops - Sinosauropteryx - Species of Allosaurus - Spinosaurus - Struthiosaurinae - Tyrannosauridae - Tyrannosauroidea - Vulcanodon

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Two Nanshiungosaurus.

Artist's rendition of two resting Nanshiungosaurus.

Photo credit: User:LadyofHats

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