Inhabiting the Sahara Desert around 110 million years ago, Nigersaurus thrived amidst a vibrant ecosystem alongside various dinosaurs like Suchomimus, ouranosaurus, lurdusaurus, and the formidable supercroc. Its distinctive features included a fragile skull and an exceptionally wide mouth adapted for grazing on low-lying vegetation. This peculiar, long-necked dinosaur is renowned for its unusually broad, straight-edged muzzle housing over 500 replaceable teeth, specifically crafted for ground-level plant consumption. Notably, the original fossilized skull of Nigersaurus stands as one of the earliest dinosaur skulls to undergo digital reconstruction via CT scans.
What dinosaur has 500 teeth?
The distinctive traits of the Nigersaurus encompass a fragile skull and an exceptionally expansive mouth tailored for grazing on low-lying vegetation. This peculiar, elongated-necked dinosaur distinguishes itself through its remarkably broad, flat-topped snout equipped with over 500 interchangeable teeth, specifically designed for plant consumption in its habitat.
Origins of the Nigersaurus Name:
The name “Nigersaurus,” meaning “Niger reptile,” directly links to the discovery site, honoring the country where its remains were found. Additionally, the specific name, “taqueti,” pays tribute to Taquet, renowned as the pioneer orchestrating extensive paleontological expeditions across Niger. The holotype specimen, labeled (MNN GAD512), comprises a partial skull and neck, forming the basis of this dinosaur’s characterization.
Who named the Nigersaurus?
Nigersaurus was named by scientist Paul Sereno and his team of researchers. The name “Nigersaurus” is derived from the location where its fossils were discovered, in the country of Niger in Africa.
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