Dilophosaurus (Di-lo-fo-sore-us), Two Crested Lizard, lived in the Early Jurassic of North America. This is one the first large theropods. Coelophysids were the most common small predators of the Early Jurassic and have been found worldwide. Dilophosaurus at 20 feet was the largest and best known. The crest are found on it smaller relatives. Initially any large coelophysid with crests is assumed to be Dilophosaurus. Dilophosaurus was featured in the original Jurassic Park and became know to the public. The portrayal in the film was largely inaccurate giving Dilophosaurus a theatrical neck frill and spiting poison both without any known evidence. The size was also unbelievably small.
Genera and Species
Classification: Theropoda, Ceratosasuria, Coelophysoidea
Species: D. Wetherill
Senior synonyms: Megalosaurus wetherilli
Dilophosaurus had powerful legs and short arms, and 2 thin, highly arched snout crests on its head for display, big teeth and robustly built.
LENGTH: 6 m (20 ft).
WEIGHT: 300 - 450 kg (660 - 990 lb).
It may have been a scavenger, as its jaws were not well developed. Alternatively, it may have killed with its clawed hands and feet. The prey would have been prosauropods and primitive armored dinosaurs.
History of Discovery
Discovered in Welles, 1970, and is known from partial skeletal remains.
It lived in well watered lake areas in the North America southwest.
- Paul, G. (2010). The Princeton Field Guide to Dinosaurs (pp. 1982). Princeton, New Jersey: University Press Princeton.
- Worth, G. (1999). The Dinosaur Encyclopaedia (pp. 796). Scarborough, Western Australia: HyperWorks Reference Software.