Camarasaurus Facts

Camarasaurus Facts
Camarasaurus is a member of the group of sauropod dinosaurs. It lived in North America 155 to 145 million years ago (late Jurassic period). Camarasaurus was discovered in 1877 in Colorado, and described one year later. Aside from Colorado, fossils of Camarasaurus were also found in New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming. Camarasaurus lived in tropical plains and arid and semi-arid areas. Thanks to numerous partial and complete fossils of Camarasaurus that were discovered so far, morphology and lifestyle of this species of dinosaur are thoroughly described.
Interesting Camarasaurus Facts:
Camarasaurus was 59 feet long and it had up to 25 tons of weight.
Camarasaurus had small, square-shaped head with blunt snout. It had long neck, thick legs and long tail, which served as counterbalance to the neck. Its front legs were slightly shorter than the hind legs and its rear surface was only slightly sloped (it was nearly parallel to the ground).
Name "Camarasaurus" means "chambered lizard". It refers to the hollow chambers in the spine whose main purpose was to reduce weight of skeleton in the neck area. These chambers were also connected with air sacks which played important role in breathing.
Based on some modern experiments, researchers concluded that Camarasaurus had very muscular, but stiff (inflexible) neck.
Paleontologists used to believe that Camarasaurus (as well as other sauropods) had two brains: one in the head and other in the hip area. Modern studies showed that what appeared as the second brain, was actually enlargement of a spinal cord. Judged by the size of its head and brain, Camarasaurus was one of the least intelligent dinosaur.
Camarasaurus walked on all four legs (quadrupedal animal).
Camarasaurus had five toes on the front feet with long, sharp claw on the inner toe which was used as a weapon against predators.
Natural enemies of young Camarasauruses were Allosaurus, Ceratosaurus and Torvosaurus.
Camarasaurus was a herbivore. Its diet was based on plants such as conifers and ferns.
Camarasaurus had very strong jaws filled with large, chisel-shaped teeth designed for chopping tough and coarse plants. Shape and size of teeth suggest that food was at least partially processed before swallowing.
Worn-out teeth were replaced with new teeth every 62 days.
Camarasaurus had lived and traveled in herds.
Assumption that Camarasaurus was a social creature is based on the fossils of both adult and young dinosaurs that were often found close to each other.
Unlike many other sauropods, Camarasaurus didn't lay its eggs in well-prepared nest. Fossilized eggs arranged in lines suggest that females probably laid eggs while they were walking. Camarasaurus didn't show parental care.
According to some researchers, Camarasaurus was sexually mature and able to reproduce at the age of 20 years. Its average lifespan was around 26 years.

Related Links:
Dinosaurs Facts
Animals Facts
Dinosaurs Facts for Kids
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