Quick Allosaurus Facts
- This dinosaur weighed about half as much as an African Elephant
- It stood 16 feet tall; 3 feet taller than the average elephant
- It was 40 feet or longer; this made it as long as 3 Hippos
- Allosaurus means “different lizard”
- It could move at about 20 MPH—the speed of a charging giraffe.
Allosaurus is a type of dinosaur called a therapod. This dinosaur lived about 155 million years ago—during the Jurassic Period—and probably lived in parts of the Western United States. It was first discovered in 1869 by Ferdinand Hayden and was later named in 1877 by Othniel Charles Marsh. It was named using the Greek words “allos”, which meant different, and “saurus” which meant lizard. Therefore, it’s name literally means “different lizard”. It was given this name because its skeleton was quite different than any other dinosaur found up until the time of its discovery.
Although most of the specimens of this dinosaur have been found in Colorado and Montana, there have been an increasing number of specimens found elsewhere. These include specimens found in New Mexico, Africa, Australia. Tanzania and parts of Europe.
This dinosaur was a large carnivorous bipedal predator that scientists believe preyed on the many herbivores of the time. This conclusion has been reached in part by the number of razor sharp teeth that can be found in this predator’s mouth. It had rows of razor sharp teeth that had saw-like formations on its edges. It is believed that the Allosaurus was able to attack larger predators with these teeth by using its upper jaw like a hatchet and attacking using the element of surprise.
One interesting fact to note is that the largest Allosaurus specimens may have rivaled the T- Rex in size. The size of the largest Allosaurus is approximately 16 feet tall, 43 feet long and weighed more up to 5 tons. This contrasts pretty well with the T- Rex who was approximately 13-16 feet tall, 42 feet long and weighed approximately 7 tons.