A Picture of Apatosaurus Ajax

Apatosaurus Facts

  • Species Type: Apatosaurus ajax
  • Type of Dinosaur: Sauropod
  • Period: Late Jurassic Period
  • Diet: Foliage (Herbivorous)
  • Life Span: 100+ years (estimated)
  • Length: 69 to 75 feet on average
  • Weighed: 18 to 25 tons on average

15 Apatosaurus Facts for Kids

  1. The scientific name Apatosaurus ajax was coined by Othniel Charles Marsh in 1877, using an almost complete skeleton discovered in Colorado.
  2. The name Apatosaurus means: Deceptive Lizard.
  3. The name Apatosaurus is pronounced: “ah-PAT-uh-SAWR-us”.
  4. The Apatosaurus was part of a group of dinosaurs known as sauropods.
  5. The Apatosaurus is a member of the Diplodocid family.
  6. They lived in the Late Jurassic Period between 151 to 152 million years ago.
  7. The Apatosaurus lived in North America.
  8. Apatosaurus fossils have been found in Morrison Formation in Colorado (USA), Oklahoma (USA), Utah (USA) and Wyoming (USA).
  9. Apatosaurus are the second most common sauropod dinosaurs found in the Morrison Formation.
  10. The Apatosaurus was a high browsing herbivore and ate foliage at the top of tree canopies.
  11. The average length of an Apatosaurus is estimated to be 69 to 75 feet.
  12. The average weight of an Apatosaurus is estimated to be 18 to 25 tons.
  13. Apatosaurus were rapid growers and could get close to their adult size in just 10 years.
  14. An adult Apatosaurus probably didn’t have to worry about predators due to its large size. Only a group of large apex predators, such as a hunting party of Allosaurs, could take down a full-grown adult.
  15. In 1997 two paleontologists published a research report stating the Apatosaurus tail would have resembled a bullwhip. They theorized an Apatosaurus could whip its tail and create a whip like cracking sound surpassing 200 decibels. That is comparable to the decibels a cannon can produce when fired.

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Additional Resources on Apatosaurus