|1st Species||Ankylosaurus magniventris|
|Time Range||68-66 mya|
|Location||United States of America, Canada|
|Name Meaning||Fused reptile|
|Physical Dimensions||7.4 meters long|
Ankylosaurus is an ankylosaurid ankylosaurian thyreophoran dinosaur from the Late Cretaceous of the United States of America and Canada. It was named in 1908 by Barnum Brown. Even though multiple specimens of this dinosaur have been unearthed, a complete skeleton has never been found, leaving it to be modeled off of more complete relatives.
Ankylosaurus was a broad, robust thyreophoran with 4 erect legs and an almost completely armored body. It had a wide skull with horns pointing out from the sides of the head, a small beak in front of its mouth, and a large club on the end of its tail. Most of its body would have been covered in thick osteoderms, while its underside and legs would have been covered in regular scales.
Ankylosaurus was an herbivore, feeding on leaves and fruits. Its wide snout was used for browsing on plants low to the ground, and since a few fossil teeth of this dinosaur were heavily worn, it was presumed that it was able to chew its food.
Ankylosaurus had a good sense of smell, which would have been great for detecting predators, since its eyes would have been barred by vegetation. As well as this, its body was heavily armored (even its eyelids were armored); osteoderms ran down its body, its neck was covered in bony half-rings (with smaller pieces in between to allow normal neck movement), and horns had protruded from the sides of its head (mainly for defense and display). The tail club it is famous for was a piece of vertebra covered by large osteoderms, and was used as a defense against predators. To use it, it would have stepped aside so its flank faced its attacker, proceeding to swing its tail with brute force, hitting the predator and, depending on how big the thyreophoran was, breaking its bones.
In popular cultureEdit
Ankylosaurus was first introduced to the public through the 1947 Age of Reptiles mural, where it was featured in a Cretaceous segment alongside the likes of Edmontosaurus, Tyrannosaurus, Triceratops, and Pteranodon. Since then, it has been taken into media and featured in movies and documentaries like The Land Before Time, Jurassic Park (especially Jurassic World), and Walking with Dinosaurs; with the very former being the exception, all of those pieces of media show it as an armored behemoth that would defend itself against any predator coming to attack it.