When we think of plant-eating dinosaurs, the ones with long necks spring to mind. Sauropod dinosaurs typically walked on four legs, ate plants, and were huge with long necks. There were roughly 300 types that lived during the 165 million years that dinosaurs roamed the earth.
This summer you can meet one of them at Dinosaur World Live, which is touring the UK and playing at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre in London. A dinosaur experience aimed at the whole family, this roarsome show is fun-filled and educational, making it perfect for kids aged three and up.
So which long-necked dino will you get to see hatching? And what are some other dinosaurs with long necks? Let’s take a look.
As you can tell from its name, giraffatitan had a very long neck. With a name meaning ‘titanic giraffe’ this sauropod lived in what is now Tanzania, and had a neck that reached 8.5-10 metres in length. Its front legs were also longer than its hind legs, meaning it could reach the tallest of treetops. It’s a baby giraffatitan that you’ll discover at Dinosaur World Live.
Giraffatitan’s neck may have been super-long, but marmenchisaurus is thought to have had the longest neck of all. Fossilised remains found in China suggest that this giant has 18 cervical vertebrae (that’s neck bones to you and me) and a neck that reached a staggering 15 metres long!
A resident of what is now North America, brachiosaurus had neck bones that were a metre long each. Its neck reached around nine metres in length, enabling it to reach foliage in tall trees. Its thought this dinosaur lived in herds and often travelled to find food.
As sauropod necks go, the diplodocus’ was relatively modest, being around 7.5 metres long. That’s still longer than a modern-day giraffe’s neck though, and at the end was a tiny head, which measured only 0.6 metres and contained a very small brain. Diplodocus’ neck bones were hollow, keeping the neck strong yet light.
Roaming what is now Argentina from the late Jurassic period until the extinction of the dinosaurs, dreadnoughtus was one of the largest living creatures the world has ever seen. Around 26 metres long and with a neck of 11 metres, it was probably too large for even the most daring predators to take on.
At the other end of the scale is anchisaurus, a relatively small sauropod that lived from 150 to 144 million years ago - several million years before dreadnoughtus was around. This dinosaur only grew up to around two metres in length, but around a third of that length was made up by its neck. It was a plant-eater, and is thought to have been able to stand on its two hind legs when it was necessary to reach food higher up.
Book your tickets to the UK’s best dinosaur show today, and visit the website for Dinosaur World prices and tour dates.