Therizinosaurus (Ther-ih-zine-oh-sore-us), Scythe Lizard, lived in the Late Cretaceous of Asia. Therizinosaurs were a family of theropods that changed from carnivores to herbivores. Therizinosaurus is the largest known maniraptor. Fossils are very incomplete and so Therizinosaurus is a composite reconstructed by using its smaller better known relatives like Beipiaosaurus.
Genera and Species
Classification: Theropoda, Tetanura, Ceratosasuria, Therizinosauridae
Species: T. cheloniformis.
Therizinosaurus had long arms ending in three fingers tipped with huge saber shaped claws. An incomplete claw measured 2 ft around the outer curve. Close relative of raptors and other feathered dinosaurs and is reconstructed with feathers. The skull is small, with the tip of the lower jaw is down turned, on top of a long neck. The tail is short with a big belly and large four toed feet.
Length 8 - 11 m (26 - 36 ft).
Weight 1.1 - 6.2 tons.
This is a high browsing theropod that could have used its long claws to reach branches like a giant sloth. Main predator would have been the giant Asian tyrannosaur Tarbosaurus.
History of Discovery
Discovered by Maleev in 1954. It is known from arms, claws and leg bones.
Found in Mongolia well watered forests with seasonal rains.
- Paul, G. (2010). The Princeton Field Guide to Dinosaurs (pp. 6197). Princeton, New Jersey: University Press Princeton
- Worth, G. (1999). The Dinosaur Encyclopaedia (pp. 3874). Scarborough, Western Australia: HyperWorks Reference Software.