Episode 7 is all about Camptosaurus, a heavy ornithischian that lived in western North America.
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In this episode, we discuss:
- The dinosaur of the day: Camptosaurus, which means “Bent” or “Flexible Lizard.”
- Camptosaurus lived in North America in the late Jurassic, about 156 to 145 million years ago.
- Camptosaurus looked like an Iguanodon, and is the ancestor of herbivores such as Iguanodon.
- Camptosaurus was heavy, weighing about 2,200 pounds. It was 16-23 feet long and 3-4 feet high at the hips.
- Camptosaurus had a long snout, hundreds of teeth, a horny beak, and four-toed feet with five-fingered arms.
- Camptosaurus had five fingers on its hands, but only fingers 1, 2, and 3 had claws. Fingers 4 and 5 had small nubs.
- Camptosaurus probably ate cycads and other tough prehistoric plants. It used its cheek teeth to grind its food.
- Camptosaurus probably lived in herds and reached max speeds of 15-25 mph.
- Camptosaurus was originally named Camptonotus in 1879 by Othniel Charles Marsh. But the name was changed to Camptosaurus in 1885 because Camptonotus was used to name a cricket.
- Camptosaurus had a pelvis that looked bent and bowed outwards. This means it had an enlarged intestine, and was probably very gassy.
- Scientists used to think Camptosaurus was bipedal, but it was probably too front heavy and walked on four legs instead.
- A 9-inch Camptosaurus embryo has been found at Dinosaur National Monument in Utah.
- Camptosaurus is part of the ornithishcian order, which was made up of beaked, herbivorous, bird-hipped dinosaurs.
- Common Ornithischians are ceratopsians, armored dinosaurs, and “duck-billed” dinosaurs. They sometimes lived in herds and were often prey for theropods.
- Throughout their evolution, Ornithischians shifted from bipedal to quadrupedal posture about three times.
- Fun Fact: Camptosaurus had a thumb spike, but it was too small to use for defense.