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Genus of theropod dinosaur (fossil)

Spinosaurus is a member of the spinosaurid family that lived on the territory of modern North Africa in the Cretaceous period (112-93.5 million years ago).

For the first time this type of dinosaur was discovered in Egypt by the German paleontologist Ernst Stromer in 1915, who brought the skeleton in Munich. However, during the Second World War, during the bombing, the bones of the Spinosaurus were destroyed. Only drawings and rare photographs of Sttromer have survived to this day.

Spinosaurus is well known from destroyed fossils, not counting recently discovered teeth and skull elements. Recently discovered in Morocco, the fossils of the lower limbs of spinosaurus probably belonged to a young individual, as they reached a small size. The jaw and skull elements presented in 2005 show that he possessed one of the longest skulls among all carnivorous dinosaurs, reaching more than 1.5 meters in length. The skull had a narrow muzzle with jaws filled with straight cone-shaped teeth. The largest of the spinosaurus specimens, known only from skull fragments, according to various reconstruction options could have a length of 12.57 to 16 meters and a mass of 7 to 12 tons, and under certain assumptions in the reconstruction - up to 20 tons. However, other known fossils of adult and almost adult spinosaurs make it difficult to identify it as the largest theropod in history, since these individuals are noticeably inferior in size even to young baryonyx and suchomimus.

One of the distinguishing features of Spinosaurus is its spine. The processes of the dorsal and caudal vertebrae form a kind of "sail" with their size and shape. Other dinosaurs had similar formations. The purpose of the "sail" is the subject of numerous discussions. One of the latest hypotheses is its role as a hydrostabilizer.


Further Resources



Riley Black
December 22, 2020
Smithsonian Magazine
Paleontologists uncovered a great deal about the "terrible lizards" this year
BBC News
September 23, 2020
BBC News
The findings come after the discovery of 1,200 dinosaur teeth in an ancient river bed in Morocco.
Shamini Bundell
May 5, 2020
Scientific American
New bones suggest Spinosaurus is the only known aquatic dinosaur.
Deekshith Nevil Pinto
May 2, 2020
The Weather Channel
The 50-foot long aquatic dinosaurs named Spinosaurus aegyptiacus have a fossil record ranging over 50 million years.
Will Dunham
April 29, 2020
The huge African predator Spinosaurus spent much of its life in the water, propelled by a paddle-like tail while hunting large fish - a "river monster," according to scientists, that showed that some dinosaurs invaded the aquatic realm.
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