Temporal range: Upper Cretaceous, 70 mya
|Mounted skeleton, Shandong Tianyu Museum of Nature|
Description[change | change source]
It is one of the longest and largest known hadrosaurids. The composite skeleton of a medium-sized individual mounted at the Geological Institute of China in Beijing measures 14.72 metres (48.3 ft) in length, and the type skull is 1.63 metres (5.3 ft) long. The weight of this genus is estimated at up to 16 tonnes (18 short tons). With a composite mounted skeleton 16.6 meters long (54.5 ft) it is the largest known ornithischian and the largest non-sauropod dinosaur.
It had an unusually long tail, presumably to counterbalance the great weight of the body at the animal's hips.
Like all hadrosaurs its beak was toothless, but its jaws were packed with around 1,500 tiny chewing teeth. A large hole near its nostrils may have been covered by a loose flap, which could be inflated to make sounds.
First described in 1973, Shantungosaurus is known from over five incomplete skeletons.
References[change | change source]
- Glut, Donald F. (1997). "Shantungosaurus". Dinosaurs: the encyclopedia. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Co. pp. 816–817. .
- Hu Chengzhi et al. (2001) (in Chinese). Shantungosaurus giganteus. Beijing: Geological Publishing House. pp. 123–135 [English abstract]. .
- Horner, John R. et al. (2004). "Hadrosauridae". In Weishampel, David B.; Dodson, Peter; and Osmólska, Halszka (eds). The Dinosauria (2nd ed.). Berkeley: University of California Press. pp. 438–463. .
- Zhao, X. et al. (2007). "Zhuchengosaurus maximus from Shandong Province". Acta Geoscientia Sinica 28 (2): 111–122. .
- Palmer D., ed. (1999). The Marshall illustrated encyclopedia of dinosaurs and prehistoric animals. London: Marshall Editions. p. 148. .