Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Superclass Tetrapoda
Class Reptilia
Subclass Diapsida
Superorder Dinosauria
Order Saurischia
Suborder Sauropodomorpha
Family Cetiosauridae
Subfamily Cetiosaurinae
Genus Cetiosaurus
1st Species Cetiosaurus oxoniensis
Other attributes
Time Range 168.3-166.1 mya
Location United Kingdom
Name Meaning Whale reptile
Physical Dimensions 16 meters long
Dietary Classification Herbivore

Cetiosaurus is a cetiosaurid sauropod sauropodomorph dinosaur from the Middle Jurassic of the United Kingdom. It was named in 1841 by Richard Owen. It was the first sauropod known to science (but was considered as a giant marine reptile until later), and, like its theropod and ornithopod predecessors, it was a wastebasket taxon.


Cetiosaurus resembled a mix between a giraffe, a whale, and a tortoise. It had a bulky body, 4 large, erect, pillar-like legs, a long tail, a moderately long neck, and a mid-sized head. Its body would have been covered in scaly skin.


Cetiosaurus was an herbivore, feeding on leaves, horsetails and ferns. Its peg-like teeth were used to strip branches of their leaves, and its moderately long neck and limbs allowed it to eat off both the trees and the ground.


Not much is known about Cetiosaurus.

In popular cultureEdit

Cetiosaurus was featured in the pilot episode of the 1999 documentary Walking with Dinosaurs, where it was feeding on large trees and presenting itself as too big to be considered prey by a hungry Eustreptospondylus. Interestingly, Cetiosaurus never actually appeared in the main documentary itself.

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