Sauropod dinosaurs such as Apatosaurus (Brontosaurus), Brachiosaurus, Diplodocus and others

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Dinosaur Jungle   >   Dinosaur Facts   >   Classification   >   Saurischia   >   Sauropods


Sauropod Dinosaurs

Scientific Classification
  Kingdom Animalia
  Phylum Chordata
  Class Sauropsida
  Superorder Dinosauria
  Order Saurischia
  Suborder Sauropodomorpha
  Infraorder Sauropoda
The Sauropoda (meaning "lizard-footed") dinosaurs were a infraorder of the the Saurischian. Together with the infraorder Prosauropods, they form the Sauropodomorpha) suborder of Saurischia. Dinosaurs in the Sauropod infrarder include, among others, Apatosaurus (also known as "Brontosaurus"), Brachiosaurus, and Diplodocus.

Sauropods first appeared during the later part of Triassic period, and at that time resembled their sister infraorder, the Prosauropods. By the late Jurassic period, Sauropods had become extremely widespread, and they survived until the end of the Cretaceous period, about 65 million years ago. Of course during all this time, no single species survived - instead a succession of different Sauropod lineages appeared at different times. At the end of Cretaceous, the Sauropods finally became extinct, along with all the other non-avian dinosaurs.

Dinosaur Classification

Sauropod dinosaurs were herbivorous (plant-eating). They were quadrupedal (walking on four legs), and they had thick pillar-like legs with five toes, although only three toes had claws. They had long necks and small heads and usually had long tails.. Additionally, some Sauropods had armor such bony osteoderms (found for example in Ampelosaurus and Saltasaurus), clubs in their tails (for example in Shunosaurus), or spined-backs (for example in Augustinia).

Sauropods are of course well-known for being large animals. Even the smallest dwarf species of Sauropod were 20 feet (6 meters) long, and the largest Sauropods were at least 130 feet (40 meters) long. There is evidence that there may have been some species that grew to 180 to 200 feet (55 to 60 meters) in length.

Why Sauropods evolved to become so large remains a matter of debate. Clearly there was some evolutionary advantage to being such huge sizes, but we can not entirely sure what it is. Some hypotheses that have been proposed include the relative immunity from predators that large size conveys, longer life spans, greater energy efficiency, or simply the fact that large-size allows herbivores to digest food more effectively.

There is a good evidence (for example fossilized trackways) that many species of Sauropods lived in herds. It is thought that many herds were separated by age, as juvenile animals appear to have eaten a different diet from adults.

Sauropod Timeline:

Sauropods first appeared during the early Jurassic period, and survived until the end of the Cretaceous period, about 65 million years ago

Sauropods first appeared during the early Jurassic period, and survived until the end of the Cretaceous period, about 65 million years ago

Types of Sauropod Dinosaur

Here is a list of some Sauropod dinosaurs:





















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