For many years, paleontologists have believed that the Tyrannosaurus Rex was the largest known predatory dinosaur. However, a groundbreaking discovery has recently been made of an even larger dinosaur which was a predator. It is called Spinosaurus, and in Latin it is called “Spinosaurus aegyptiacus.”
The name means “Egyptian spine lizard.” The Spinosaurus was a theropod dinosaur which existed around 95 million years ago. It lived during the Cretaceous period, and is much more larger than the Tyrannosaurus Rex. It had a length of between 50 or 60 feet, and weighed approximately 9 tons. However, some adults were found to weigh as much as 20 tons. These species of dinosaurs had a large spine from which their name is derived.
The spine appeared to be large bones which protrude from the vertebrae, and was about 2 meters in length. Some paleontologists also believe this spine was covered in muscles. The Spinosaurus also has one of the longest skulls known for any predatory dinosaur. The fossils of this creature were first found in 1912 by a German paleontologist named Ernst Stromer. While transporting the bones to Munich, some of the bones were damaged, while others were completely destroyed by bombs during the second world war.
The Spinosaurus has a long snout which is filled with cone shaped teeth. On each of its front limbs it has a long hook like structure which many believe was used to catch fish. Like the Tyrannosaurus Rex, the Spinosaurus has short legs combined with long arms. Some paleontologists have suggested that the Spinosaurus may have been a quadruped.
When it comes to hunting, Spinosaurus was known for being an opportunistic predator. Its teeth have been found in the bones of archosaurs, and it also attacked and ate the Iguanodon. In general, the Spinosaurus enjoyed hunting small to medium sized animals. Paleontologists aren’t clear about what function the large spinelike structure played. Some believe it was used to attract mates, while others believe it was used to intimidate enemies or regulate heat along its body.
Some believe the dinosaur would raise its sail like a rattlesnake to warn others before attacking, and it is also possible that the spinelike structure played all three roles. So far, three specimens have been found, and one of them were destroyed during the second world war. While this species is larger than the Tyrannosaurus Rex, its teeth were designed to hold struggling prey, but not break the neck.