Acrocanthosaurus

Acrocanthosaurus draw

 

Its name comes from the Greek and means “high thorny or large lizard” and is a reropodalosauroid dinosaur. He lived in the Cretaceous period about 100 million years ago in North America. Only one species is known, the A. Atokensis. This dinosaur was a biped and had a spiny process in most of its vertebrae, which are the bones of the spine. It is believed that he may have had a hump and the spines ran from his back to his hip. It was a very large theropod not as large as its relative the Gigantosaurus, it could measure up to 13 meters long and weigh up to 6 tons.

Acrocanthosaurus was a large predator mainly because of its large size. His skull was long and narrow and had a hole near his eyes that allowed him to keep his head from being so heavy that he could hold it and walk quickly despite its large size. Its tail was very long and thick, which made it powerful, and as in other similar dinosaurs it was used to balance its body, so its center of gravity was in the middle and it could move easily.

His arms were short and had three clawed fingers. His legs on the other hand were peculiar since his femur, i.e. the thigh bone or upper leg bone, was considerably longer, this took some of the balance off so experts have concluded that Acrocanthosaurus was not a runner dinosaur. In addition to all this his feet were very strong and powerful, he had four toes of which only three touched the ground.

The only species known to have been named A. Atokensis because the bones were found in Atoka, a region of Oklahoma. It was J. Willis Stovall and Wann Langstorn who named it, the remains were discovered in the first half of the 1940s, studied for several years and finally described in 1950. These were the first attempts to describe them and although much was known about them the remains were very incomplete.

It was in the 1990s that much more complete specimens were found, they were found in Texas the only thing they do not have is the complete skull and you can find them in the Museum of Science and History in Fort Worth. However, the most complete of the Acrocanthosaurus skeletons was found in South Dakota, it was found by private collectors, and it is the largest ever discovered, in fact it is the only one with a complete skull and they were able to find an arm with all its parts.

So far, many incomplete remains of this dinosaur have been found even as far as Maryland, so I know that its distribution was wide in North America, especially in the western United States, the problem is that many remains are just pieces and it is difficult to assign them to certain dinosaurs.

The Acrocantosaurus was one of the largest dinosaurs in the region where it lived and within its ecosystem took the place of a large predator, was a large and fearsome carnivore and was a very good hunter. It is believed that their favourite prey were sauropods and onrithopods, their jaws and claws were ideal for this work. Perhaps he was not the fastest of the known dinosaurs but his jaws and his ability to hunt were so powerful that he could handle very large prey. I could hunt them alone and without any problem.

The most interesting thing about Acrocanthosaurus is that it had a ridge, maybe we can compare it with the Spinosaurus, even though these two dinosaurs are not related. The crest of the Spinosaurus was more like a sail to sail, in the case of the Acrocanthosaurus it is more like a thick, fleshy, smaller crest. As it is common, it is not very clear what its function was, the most recognized fact is that it was used to regulate its temperature.

You could find its spines from its neck to the end of its tail, it was a pretty impressive dinosaur, it is believed that they were surrounded by very powerful muscles, so their spines were not so high, however they stood out twice the height of the bones of its back, its crest can be compared to the species of hump that have the bison, but much larger and more powerful. In general, it is not believed that he had any kind of combat with them or that they served him for anything other than identification among those of his species or, as mentioned before, as an element of thermoregulation.

Where else can you find him?

You can find Acrocanthosaurus in Dinosaur King and curiously enough in Monty Harper’s song, which also describes its characteristics and in some video games.