Dinosaurs came in many different shapes and sizes. To date, scientists have identified thousands of individual Dinosaur species, but today we will be reading about 5 different types of Dinosaurs.
Tyrannosaurs were the killing machines of the late Cretaceous period. These huge, powerful carnivores were all legs, trunk, and teeth, and they preyed relentlessly on smaller, herbivorous Dinosaurs (not to mention other theropods). Of course, the most famous tyrannosaur was Tyrannosaurus Rex, though less well-known species (such as Albertosaurus and Daspletosaurus) were equally deadly.
Technically, tyrannosaurs were theropods, placing them in the same larger group as Dino-birds and raptors.
Among the most feared Dinosaurs of the Mesozoic Era, Raptors (also called “dromaeosaurs” by paleontologists) were closely related to modern birds and counted among the family of Dinosaurs loosely known as “Dino-birds.” Raptors are distinguished by their bipedal postures, grasping, three-fingered hands, larger-than-average brains, and the signature, curved claws on each of their feet; most of them were also covered with feathers. Among the most famous raptors are those in the genera Deinonychus, Velociraptor, and the giant Utahraptor.
Sauropods were a large and diverse group of huge, long-necked Dinosaurs. They appeared 225 million years ago and successfully ruled the Earth during the next 100 million years (they were a dominant group of terrestrial reptiles during the Mesozoic). Fossils of Sauropods can be found all over the planet (including Antarctica). Apatosaurus, Diplodocus and Brachiosaurus are some of the most popular types of sauropods.
- Hadrosaurs (Duck-Billed Dinosaurs)
Among the last and most densely inhabited Dinosaurs to roam the earth, Hadrosaurs (commonly known as duck-billed Dinosaurs) were large, oddly shaped, low-slung plant eaters with tough beaks on their snouts for shredding vegetation and (sometimes) distinctive head crests.
Most Hadrosaurs are believed to have lived in herds and to have been capable of walking on two legs, and some species (such as the North American Maiasaura and Hypacrosaurus) were especially good parents to their hatchlings and youngsters.
During the late Triassic period, a strange, awkward race of small-to-medium-sized herbivorous Dinosaurs sprang up in the part of the world corresponding to South America. The Prosauropods weren’t directly ancestral to the huge Sauropods of the late Jurassic period but occupied an earlier, parallel branch in Dinosaur evolution. Oddly enough, most Prosauropods seem to have been capable of walking on two as well as four legs, and there’s some evidence that they supplemented their vegetarian diets with small servings of meat.
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