Mosasaurus Facts for Kids

Mosasaurus hoffmanni
  • Species Type: Mosasaurus hoffmanni
  • Type of Mosasaurs: Squamata
  • Period: Late Cretaceous
  • Diet: Meat (carnivorous)
  • Life Span: Around 42 years
  • Length: Up to 56 feet
  • Weight: 40,000+ Pounds


19 Mosasaurus Facts for Kids

  1. The Mosasaurus was discovered in 1764, by lieutenant Jean Baptiste Drouin.
  2. The Mosasaurus got its scientific name Mosasaurus hoffmanni in 1829, by Gideon Mantell.
  3. The holotype skeleton for the Mosasaurus hoffmanni is MNHNP AC9648, which is just a skull.
  4. The name Mosasaurus means: “Lizard of the Meuse River”.
  5. The name Mosasaurus is pronounced: “MOE-zah-SORE-usis”.
  6. The Mosasaurus was part of a group of Mosasaurs known as aquatic squamates.
  7. The Mosasaurus is a member of the Mosasauridae family.
  8. The Mosasaurus lived in the Late Cretaceous Period between 66 and 70 million years ago.
  9. The largest discovered specimen of Mosasaurus had a length of up to 56 feet.
  10. The length of the Mosasaurus was greater then the fearsome Tyrannosaur rex.
  11. The Mosasaurus was a carnivorous aquatic hunter, and their prey was most likely fish, marine reptiles, birds, pterosaurs, smaller mosasaurs and maybe even land dinosaurs.
  12. The teeth of a Mosasaurus were shaped like sharp spikes, allowing them grip and hold onto their prey.
  13. The double-hinged jaw of the Mosasaurus would allow it to swallow its prey whole.
  14. The Mosasaurus is estimated to have been one of the last of the mosasaurids.
  15. The Mosasaurus is estimated to have been one of the largest mosasaurids.
  16. The Mosasaurus spent most of its time near the ocean surface, much like modern whales do, since they breathed air in a similar fashion.
  17. Paleontologists think the Mosasaurus had live births, just like whales, instead of laying eggs.
  18. The Mosasaurus could be found in oceans around the globe during the Late Cretaceous Period.
  19. It’s estimated that the Mosasaurus lived in the waters around North America and western Europe. It’s possible they also lived in the waters around Japan and New Zealand.

Additional Resources on the Mosasaurus