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ALL ABOUT DINOSAURS!
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Othnielia
OTHNIELIA
Named for Charles Othniel Marsh
  • A plant-eating Ornithopod
  • Horny beak and cheek teeth
  • Ran very fast (on two legs)
  • A stiff tail for balance when running

ANATOMY
Othnielia was an ornithopod dinosaur that measured about 4 ft (1.1 m) long, weighing about 50 pounds (22.5 kg). Othnielia had a horny beak and a small skull with self-sharpening cheek teeth. Othnielia may have had cheek pouches.

This plant eater was bipedal (walked on two legs). It had thin legs and a stiffened tail that gave it speed and agility. It had five-fingered hands and four-toed feet, all clawed. It had large eyes and short arms. Othnielia resembled Hypsilophodon (but had longer feet and different vertebrae).

LOCOMOTION
Othnielia was a very fast bi-pedal (two-legged) runner. It had long legs with very long shins; this made it a very fast runner. Running was its primary defense predators. Othnielia had a stiffened tail that helped it balance when running and turning.

WHEN OTHNIELIA LIVED
Othnielia lived during the late Jurassic Period, about 156-145 million years ago.

BEHAVIOR
Othnielia may have lived in herds They probably laid eggs and may have cared for their young.

INTELLIGENCE
Othnielia was an ornithopod, whose intelligence (as measured by its relative brain to body weight, or EQ) was midway among the dinosaurs.

EQ


DIET
This horny beaked dinosaur was an herbivore (it ate only plants). It had chisel-like cheek teeth.

NAMING AND FOSSILS
Othnielia was named by Galton in 1977 (in honor of the paleontologist Charles Othniel Marsh) .

Its fossils (two partial skeletons and teeth) were found in Colorado and Utah in the western USA.

CLASSIFICATION
Othnielia Othnielia was an Ornithischian dinosaur, belonging to the Suborder Ornithopoda, and the Family Hypsilophodontidae (gazelle-like, herbivorous, herding dinosaurs which included Dryosaurus, Hypsilophodon, Tenotosaurus, Parksosaurus, and Thescelosaurus).

The type species is O. rex (which was originally called Nanosaurus, named by C. O. Marsh in 1877).

LINKS
Othnielia fact sheet or a printable version




Information Sheets About Dinosaurs
(and Other Prehistoric Creatures)

Just click on an animal's name to go to that information sheet. If the dinosaur you're interested in isn't here, check the Dinosaur Dictionary or the list of Dinosaur Genera. Names with an asterisk (*) were not dinosaurs.
How to write a great dinosaur report.

For dinosaur printouts, click here.

For brief dinosaur fact sheets, click here.




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