Carnotaurus was a large predatory theropod dinosaur that lived in the Late Cretaceous of South America, about 70 million years ago. It is known for its distinctive horns that sprouted above its eyes.
Genera and Species
Classification: Theropoda, Abelisauridae
Genus: Carnotaurus (“Meat-eating Bull”)
Species: C. sastrei
Carnotaurus has many distinctive figures that make it stand out among other theropods. Its skull is very deep, with a jaw that curves upward. Its head featured two short horns that jutted from above the eyes. It also had very tiny arms, shorter in proportion to its body than those of Tyrannosaurus rex. Skin impressions are also known, which show that Carnotaurus was covered in rows of pronounced bumps.
LENGTH: 5 - 8 m (16.5 - 27 ft).
WEIGHT: 1.5 tons.
Carnotaurus was an apex predator in Cretaceous South America. It may have used its prominent horns for display, or for fighting other rival Carnotaurus. It likely preyed on sauropods like Saltasaurus which shared its range.
History of Discovery
Carnotaurus was discovered by Jose Bonaparte in 1985 in Argentina, during the same expedition that uncovered the only known skeleton of Amargasaurus (though the two dinosaurs did not live during the same time period). It is almost entirely known, with nearly a complete skeleton and large amounts of skin impressions discovered.
Carnotaurus was discovered in Argentina and likely lived in a land of coastal plans and tidal flats, with alternating dry and humid seasons. It shared its environment with other dinosaurs, reptiles including lizards, turtles and snakes, as well as fish and small early mammals.
- 1. Paul, G. (2016). The Princeton Field Guide to Dinosaurs, 2nd Edition. Princeton, New Jersey: University Press Princeton.
- Worth, G. (1999). The Dinosaur Encyclopaedia Dev 13 (pp. 596). Scarborough, Western Australia: HyperWorks Reference Software.