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"Dilophosaurus towers over its competitors...and its prey. This is no ordinary predator."

Dilophosaurus ("Lizard with Two Crests") was a genus of Early Jurassic Theropod dinosaur from the Early Jurassic Period, about 208-176 million years ago. The first specimens were described in 1954, but it was not until over a decade later that the genus received its current name. The name Dilophosaurus means "two-crested lizard". Dilophosaurus gets its name from the two thin crests of bone on the top of its head. These were probably used as a display for courtship purposes.

Facts

Time/Era/Period

Dilophosaurus lived during the Early Jurassic Period, about 208-170 million years ago. They were the top predators of their time.

Size/Description

Dilophosaurus was one of the largest carnivorous dinosaurs of the Early Jurassic Period. They stood about 10-12 feet (3-3.6 meters) tall, measured up to 6-7 meters (20-23 ft) long and may have weighed 500 kilograms (1,100 lb) to about 1 ton (2,000 lb). It was the biggest animal in the region.

As a more primitive predatory dinosaur, Dilophosaurus didn't have forward facing eyes to give it stereo vision. It may have used scent as an integral part of its hunting technique. It had long and slender, rear-curving teeth in long jaws and strong front arms which would have been effective in grabbing prey. It was fast - probably with a top speed of about 30-mph. It also had a long tail that could have been used as a whip in a fight. Footprints attributed to Dilophosaurus appear in groups, so it may have hunted in small packs. It shares the same overall body configuration as its ancestor Coelophysis.

They ate Anchisaurus and had to fight off Syntarsus.

Fossels

Dilophosaurus has been found in both the U.S. and China, which, although part of the same huge landmass, were still quite a long distance from each other.

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