Diplodocus Facts

Diplodocus Facts
Diplodocus was herbivorous dinosaur and a member of a group of sauropod dinosaurs. There were 4 species of Diplodocus that lived in the western parts of North America, 155.7 to 150.8 million years ago (late Jurassic Period). First fossil of Diplodocus was found near Canon City, in Colorado, in 1877. Many fossils have been discovered since then, mostly in Montana, Wyoming, Utah and Colorado. Diplodocus is one of the best-known dinosaurs that even amateurs can easily recognize because of its typical "dinosaur" body shape.
Interesting Diplodocus Facts:
Diplodocus was 90 to 175 feet long and it weighed 10 to 12 tons.
Based on the nearly complete fossils, Diplodocus was the longest dinosaur on the planet. Some other species, such as Supersaurus, were probably longer, but their skeletons are not complete and their exact body length is still unknown (it is calculated based on the rest of the skeleton).
Diplodocus had long neck (up to 21 feet in length) and very long tail which served as counterbalance for the rest of the body. It had very small head with nostrils positioned on top of it. Its legs were sturdy. Front legs were shorter than hind legs. Diplodocus had 5 fingers on the feet and single large claw on the first finger ("big toe") on the hind feet.
Diplodocus had small spines on the skin of neck, body and tail.
Name "Diplodocus" means "strange beam". It refers to two rows of bones in the tail, whose main role was to support the weight and ensure greater mobility of tail.
Diplodocus had 15 elongated vertebrae in the neck and 80 vertebrae in the tail.
Diplodocus used its long, whip-like tail to intimidate predators and competitors. Some researchers believe that tail was also used for communication and during the courtship.
Diplodocus was quadrupedal animal. It walked on all four legs, placing its broad feet straight to the ground, just like the modern elephant.
Diplodocus was slow animal. It walked at the speed of 5 to 9 miles per hour.
Diplodocus had lived and traveled in herds.
Diplodocus was a herbivore. It consumed both low-laying plants and soft leaves from the tall trees. Its diet was based on moss, ferns, conifers and ginkgos.
Diplodocus had numerous small, slender, peg-like teeth, located in the front part of the mouth. Teeth were designed for stripping leaves from the trees.
Due to high content of silica in the plants and consumption of stones to facilitate digestion, teeth of Diplodocus didn't last long. An average lifespan of tooth was around 35 days.
Diplodocus was growing its entire life. At the age of 10 years, Diplodocus was sexually mature and ready to reproduce.
Scientists believe that Diplodocus was laying eggs in communal areas, in the shallow pits covered with vegetation.

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