List of African dinosaurs
Africa has a rich fossil record, but it is patchy and incomplete. Prosauropods dating from the Early Triassic period, about 230 million years ago, have been discovered in Madagascar. Africa is rich in Triassic and Lower Jurassic dinosaurs. African dinosaurs from these time periods include Syntarsus, Dracovenator, Melanorosaurus, Massospondylus, Euskelosaurus, Heterodontosaurus, Abrictosaurus, and Lesothosaurus. The Middle Jurassic is poorly represented in Africa. Only the three sauropods Cetiosaurus, Lapparentosaurus, and Archaeodontosaurus have been discovered dating from this time period. The Upper Jurassic, however, is well represented in Africa, mainly thanks to the spectacular Tendaguru Formation. Allosaurus, Ceratosaurus, Elaphrosaurus, Giraffatitan, Dicraeosaurus, Janenschia, Tornieria, Tendaguria, Kentrosaurus, and Dryosaurus are among the dinosaurs whose remains have been recovered from Tendaguru. This fauna seems to show strong similarities to that of the Morrison Formation in the United States and the Lourinha Formation in Portugal. For example, Allosaurus, Ceratosaurus, and Dryosaurus have been found in both the Tendaguru and the Morrison. This has important biogeographical implications.
The Lower Cretaceous in Africa is known primarily from the northern part of the continent, particularly Niger. Suchomimus, Elrhazosaurus, Spinostropheus, Rebbachisaurus, Nigersaurus, Kryptops, Nqwebasaurus, and Paranthodon are some of the early Cretaceous dinosaurs known from Africa. The early Cretaceous was an important time for the dinosaurs of Africa because it was when Africa finally separated from South America, forming the South Atlantic Ocean. This was an important event because now the dinosaurs of Africa started developing endemism because of isolation. The Upper Cretaceous of Africa is known mainly from North Africa. During the early part of the Upper Cretaceous, North Africa was home to a rich dinosaur fauna. It includes Spinosaurus, Carcharodontosaurus, Rugops, Bahariasaurus, Deltadromeus, Paralititan, Aegyptosaurus, and Ouranosaurus. During the latest Cretaceous, at the end of the Age of Dinosaurs, Majungasaurus, Masiakasaurus, Rapetosaurus, and the flying dromaeosaurid Rahonavis lived in Africa.
Name Period Diet Notes Aardonyx Jurassic herbivore — Abrictosaurus Jurassic herbivore or omnivore — Aegyptosaurus Cretaceous herbivore — Aetonyx Jurassic herbivore probably synonymous with Massospondylus Afrovenator Jurassic carnivore — Algoasaurus Jurassic/Cretaceous herbivore — Allosaurus Jurassic carnivore — Antetonitrus Triassic herbivore — Archaeodontosaurus Jurassic herbivore _ Atlasaurus Jurassic herbivore — Australodocus Jurassic herbivore — Bahariasaurus Cretaceous carnivore — Barosaurus Jurassic herbivore — Berberosaurus Jurassic carnivore — Blikanasaurus Triassic herbivore — Carcharodontosaurus Cretaceous carnivore — Ceratosaurus Jurassic carnivore — Cetiosaurus Jurassic herbivore — Chebsaurus Jurassic herbivore — Cristatusaurus Cretaceous carnivore — Deltadromeus Cretaceous carnivore — Dicraeosaurus Jurassic herbivore — Dracovenator Jurassic carnivore — Dryosaurus Jurassic herbivore — Elaphrosaurus Jurassic carnivore — Elrhazosaurus Cretaceous herbivore — Eocarcharia Jurassic carnivore — Eocursor Triassic omnivore — Eucnemesaurus Triassic (disputed) — Euskelosaurus Triassic herbivore — Fabrosaurus Jurassic herbivore — Geranosaurus Jurassic (unknown) — Giraffatitan Jurassic herbivore — Gyposaurus Jurassic herbivore — Heterodontosaurus Jurassic herbivore — Ignavusaurus Jurassic herbivore — Inosaurus Cretaceous (unknown) — Janenschia Jurassic herbivore — Jobaria Cretaceous herbivore — Kangnasaurus Cretaceous (unknown) — Karongasaurus Cretaceous herbivore — Kemkemia Cretaceous carnivore — Kentrosaurus Jurassic herbivore — Kryptops Cretaceous carnivore — Lanasaurus Jurassic herbivore — Lapparentosaurus Jurassic herbivore _ Lesothosaurus Jurassic herbivore — Likhoelesaurus Triassic (unknown) Possibly not a dinosaur (disputed) Lurdusaurus Cretaceous herbivore — Lycorhinus Jurassic herbivore — Majungasaurus Cretaceous carnivore _ Malawisaurus Cretaceous herbivore — Masiakasaurus Cretaceous carnivore _ Massospondylus Jurassic herbivore — Megapnosaurus Jurassic carnivore — Melanorosaurus Triassic herbivore — Nigersaurus Cretaceous herbivore — Nqwebasaurus Cretaceous carnivore — Ouranosaurus Cretaceous herbivore — Paralititan Cretaceous herbivore — Paranthodon Cretaceous herbivore — Plateosauravus Triassic herbivore — Rahonavis Cretaceous carnivore _ Rapetosaurus Cretaceous herbivore _ Rebbachisaurus Cretaceous herbivore — Rugops Cretaceous carnivore — Sigilmassasaurus Cretaceous carnivore — Spinosaurus Cretaceous carnivore — Spinophorosaurus Jurassic herbivore — Spinostropheus Cretaceous carnivore — Stormbergia Jurassic (unknown) — Suchomimus Cretaceous carnivore — Tazoudasaurus Jurassic herbivore — Tendaguria Jurassic herbivore — Thotobolosaurus Triassic herbivore — Tornieria Jurassic herbivore — Vulcanodon Jurassic herbivore —
Key[change | change source]
Timeline[change | change source]
This is a timeline of selected dinosaurs from the list above. Time is measured in mya along the x-axis.
Criteria for inclusion[change | change source]
- The creature must appear on the List of dinosaurs.
- Fossils of the creature must have been found in Africa.
- This list is a complement to Category:Dinosaurs of Africa.
Notes[change | change source]
- Diet is sometimes hard to determine for dinosaurs and should be considered a "best guess"