The Allosaurus is one of the most interesting and ferocious dinosaurs that populated the world during the Jurassic period and early Cretaceous, approximately 150 million years ago. Its name means strange or different reptile and it lived mainly in North America and Europe, although some remains have also been found in Asia. He was a great bipedal predator, that is to say, he walked on two feet, had very sharp teeth. On average it was about 8.5 meters long, only slightly smaller than the largest predator, Tyrannosaurus Rex, in fact it was one of the best predators and was obviously at the top of the food chain.
It had very powerful claws and legs that made it fast and highly lethal. He also had a large head in relation to his body, about 90 centimeters from neck to tip of muzzle. They were said to have very sharp eyesight. To this must be added that they had some rows of teeth that added up to about 70, which worked more or less like a saw, also if for any reason lost some of their teeth, it was replaced immediately, ie that he got another tooth just in the same space. As already mentioned, it was not one of the largest dinosaurs but weighed about the same as a rhinoceros.
The Allosaurus lived together with the Apatosaurus, Diplodocus and Stegosaurus. It is said that it was the most common predator in North America, many fossils have been found, there are about 60 Allosaurus on display. Skeletons complete and in excellent condition, there are approximately 24, which you can find in some museums in the United States and Europe.
Although he had many names and a long history of confusion and clarification, the first to discover an allosaurus bone was Ferdinand Vandiveer Hayden over 100 years ago in 1869. However, the first one to describe it with complete characteristics was the paleontologist Othniel Charles Marsh in 1877. However, since 1980, many of its characteristics have been discovered and clarified, such as its growth, brain and hunting methods that have allowed us to know it in more detail. In 1976, very important excavations were carried out at the Cleveland Lloyd mine, where many specimens were discovered. This was the result of the joint work of 38 museums, 8 countries and 3 continents.
Because traces of his particular teeth have been found in the bones of other dinosaurs and by his physique, scientists are certain that he ate other dinosaurs, i.e. he was a carnivore. It is said that one of his favorite bites was the Apatosaurus. He was also an excellent hunter who could catch his prey with great ease and efficiency.
The best thing Allosaurus could do was hunt, he was practically a hunting machine, he was a very dangerous predator. He hunted prey 5 times heavier than himself, this he could do mainly because he was, despite his very agile size, reaching a speed of about 8 or 10 kilometers per hour, much faster than the other predators. His head, which was large, worked as an anchor, which means that when he bit, he pulled his head down with his weight and pulled down even the largest and heaviest prey, and they had excellent vision.
Another thing that helped him was that he had very powerful claws, both on his legs and hands, with very sharp nails that we could compare with those of an eagle, this allowed him to tear the skin of his prey, which was not easy because dinosaurs had rough, rough and thick skins. Another deadly weapon was its tail, which dealt intense blows as it consisted of more than 50 bones and could knock anyone down or injure them. Perhaps his most important weapon and that differentiated him from other predators was that in addition to being an excellent hunter by his physique, he was also an excellent hunter because he worked as a team. Because of the number of fossils that have been found together, it is believed that they hunted together, while other dinosaurs were not only aggressive with their prey but also with the same species of dinosaurs, Allosaurus worked together, which made them incredibly lethal, ambushed their prey and it was impossible to fail or go hungry.
Where can you find him?
For all the virtues of Allosaurus and also because it is a well studied dinosaur it is constantly in popular culture, in fact it is one of the most popular. First it must be said that it is the official dinosaur of the state of Utah, in the United States, because of the large number of specimens found there.
He also appears in Arthur Conan Doyle’s novel “The Lost World” and in the film they made of this novel in 1924, as well as in the television series produced by the BBC. You can also find it in the film “The Hollow Mountain Beast” and “The Gwngi Valley”, as well as in the dinosaur special “Walking with Dinosaurs”, where you can learn a little more about it.