Meet the dinosaurs!

This summer, the Zoo is housing 12 species of life-sized moving robotic dinosaurs.

Which one is your favorite?!

Triceratops

Diet: Herbivore

Size: 30 feet long

Age: Late Cretaceous, 65 million years ago

Location: Western North America

Facts:

  • Triceratops is named for its three long horns. Though the horns look scary, they were thin and not a good defense against larger predators. So what did Triceratops use their horns for? They may have used them for sparring with other Triceratops for mates.

Tyrannosaurus rex

Diet: Carnivore

Size: 40 feet long

Age: Late Cretaceous, 65 million years ago.

Location: Western North America

Facts:

  • T. rex was the smartest and most powerful of all giant meat-eating dinosaurs.
  • It had the most powerful bite of any animal.
  • T. rex had 50 sharp teeth the size of bananas.
  • It could chomp 500 pounds of dinosaur meat in one bite.

Parasaurolophus

Diet: Herbivore

Size: 30 feet long

Age: Late Cretaceous, 65 million years ago

Location: Western North America

Facts:

  • Parasaurolophus had the fanciest crest of any duckbilled dinosaur.
  • It could blow low notes through its trumpet just as an elephant does today.
  • Long ago, some scientists thought Parasaurolophus lived in the water and used its horn as a snorkel. Later, findings proved their theory very incorrect!

Tenontosaurus

Diet: Herbivore

Size: 20 feet long

Age: Early Cretaceous, 115 million years ago

Location: Western North America

Facts:

  • Tenontosaurus was the most common of all dinosaurs in its world.
  • Like a deer, it was built to browse on low-growing plants.
  • Tenontosaurs were the favorite lunch food for Deinonychus. Tenontosaur bones are found with nearly four out of every five Deinonychus discoveries.

Deinonychus

Diet: Carnivore

Size: 10 feet long

Age: Early Cretaceous, 115 million years ago

Location: Western North America

Facts:

  • Deinonychus was a man-sized “raptor.”
  • It had sharp teeth but probably killed with the single big claw on each of its hands and feet.
  • Deinonychus would have made a great predator in Jurassic Park. It was the perfect size. In real life, Velociraptors were the size of a poodle.

Lessemsaurus

Diet: Herbivore

Size: Up to 30 feet long

Age: Late Triassic, 200 million years ago

Location: South America

Facts:

  • Lessemsaurus was one of the last and biggest of the prosauropod dinosaurs that walked on two or four legs.
  • After the Lessemsaurus, giant sauropods like Argentinosaurus walked the earth — the biggest animals ever.
  • Lessemsaurus is named for explorer and writer “Dino” Don Lessem, whose company created this exhibit.

Herrerasaurus

Diet: Carnivore

Size: 13 feet long

Age: Late Triassic, 210 million years ago

Location: South America

Facts:

  • Herrerasaurus was the first large meat-eating dinosaur to evolve.
  • Though it was the largest dinosaur in its time, overall, the largest prehistoric animals were relatives of crocodiles.
  • The desert where Herrerasaurus was found is so dry and rocky it is called “The Valley of the Moon.”

Pachycephalosaurus

Diet: Herbivore

Size: 15 feet long

Age: Late Cretaceous, 65 million years ago

Location: Western North America

Facts:

  • Pachycephalosaurus was the largest of the dome-headed dinosaurs.
  • Scientists believe they may have used their thick skulls to butt each other as rams do today with their horns.
  • This dinosaur’s name means “thick-headed” reptile. Pretty accurate for an animal with a forehead as thick as a bowling ball!

Velociraptor

Diet: Carnivore

Size: 6 feet long

Age: Late Cretaceous, 80 million years ago

Location: Central Asia

Facts:

  • Velociraptors hunted dinosaurs their own size, like Oviraptor, by hunting in a pack.
  • Its feathers were not designed for flying, but they did keep this little dinosaur warm.
  • Velociraptor was no bigger than a poodle. In Jurassic Park movies, Velociraptor was made to be the size of a man.

Oviraptor

Diet: Carnivore

Size: 7 feet long

Age: Late Cretaceous, 80 million years ago

Location: Mongolia and China

Facts:

  • Oviraptor means “egg thief.”
  • When discovered a century ago, scientists thought that this toothless dinosaur ate the eggs of Protoceratops another small dinosaur that lived in its habitat. Many years later, researchers discovered an Oviraptor sitting on a nest of eggs. It was a good parent, not an egg thief. So what did Oviraptor eat with its sharp, but toothless beak? Perhaps insects, fruit, small lizards and little mammals.

Dsungaripterus

Diet: Carnivore

Size: 10 feet wide

Age: Early Cretaceous, 130 million years ago

Location: Mongolia, China, Korea, and East Africa

Facts:

  • Dsungaripterus was a mid-sized pterosaur with a peculiarly deep jaw.
  • The front of its head was toothless.
  • Small teeth in the back likely were used to crush small animals that Dsungaripterus pried out of rocks or picked off the ground.
  • Dsungaripterus was heavily built compared to most pterosaurs. A solid skeleton suggests it may have spent more time living on land than most other pterosaurs.

Quetzalcoatlus

Diet: Carnivore

Size: 35 feet wide

Age: Late Cretaceous, 68 million years ago

Location: North American Midwest

Facts:

  • Quetzalcoatlus was the largest animal that ever flew.
  • It was as wide as a fighter jet.
  • Like many other pterosaurs it was lightly built, with a thin body, long jaw, and sharp large teeth used to catch fish.
  • Quetzalcoatlus is also the name of a feathered flying god worshiped by the Aztec civilization of Mexico.