If you were to compare Ankylosaurus, the largest dinosaur among the herbivore dinosaurs, you can just imagine those armoured cars. This type of dinosaur is slow-moving in nature, low-slung, and has a thick body covering that is almost impenetrable exactly like armour. The Greek name Ankylosaurus refers to a “stiffened lizard” or “fused lizard”. It has the length of 25 to 35 feet, height of 4 feet at its hips, and weight of 3 to 4 tons, this is herbivore dinosaur’ largest dinosaur.
Here are more interesting facts about these dinosaurs:
Early 20th Century Discovery
Ankylosaurus fossil was discovered in 1906 by the renowned palaeontologist Barnum Brown in the formation of Hell Creek, Montana, USA. He was able to unearth several other remains of this herbivore largest dinosaur as well as fossilized armour pieces scattered around the area which he referred to as Dynamosaurus.
Osteoderms Comprises the Ankylosaurus’ Armor
You will easily distinguish this dinosaur for its hard, knobby armor that covers its head, long neck, back, and all through its tail. The armor was composed of scutes or osteoderm, which were deeply rooted bone plates but not connected with the rest of its skeleton. It is likewise covered by thickly keratin layer, the one and same protein which can be found in human hair as well.
Unusual Small Brain size For Its Gigantic Body
You may think that for its hugeness, its brain would be the same but no. Ankylosaurus has an unusually tiny brain and it is the least smart among all dinosaurs. This could be because these armored yet slow plant eater dinosaurs require no defensive strategy as compared to carnivore dinosaurs that always fight their way for food.
Ankylosaurus Existed in Tropical Climate
A humid, warm, almost tropical climate is what the western part of the United States has 65 Million years back, late in cretaceous period. When you think about the massiveness of its body as well as the environment Ankylosaurus habituated, it is most likely that this herbivore largest dinosaur possessed ametabolism similar to the cold-blooded animals which enabled it to be out in the hat during the day and slowly dissipate it at night.
One of the Lasts to Go Extinct
The supposed cold-blooded metabolism and it’s almost impenetrable armor empowered the Ankylosaurus to better withstand the K/T Extinction Event than other dinosaurs. The disappearance of ferns and trees these tame dinosaurs were accustomed to eating resulted to its population slowly dying until its extinction millions of years ago.
Ankylosaurus and similar dinosaurs were found across the globe – herbivorous dinosaurs’ widespread family, ankylosaurs, were discovered all over across every continent in the world except Africa. Although its evolutionary relationship with all other armored dinosaurs is disputable, the possibility of their similarities may be due to convergence of evolution.
This herbivore largest dinosaur may have been extinct millions of years ago but some people still don’t know how Ankylosaurus is pronounced. There are two ways to pronounce it: one is by stressing on its 1st syllable just like palaeontologists do, ANK-ill-oh-SORE-us. And the other is by putting the stress on its 2nd syllable, ank-EYE-low-SORE-us. Either way, you are right.