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ALL ABOUT DINOSAURS!
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Diplodocus Fact Sheet
Go to a Printable Version

Dinosaur/Paleontology Dictionary
NAME: Meaning - Diplodocus means "Double-beamed"
Pronounced - di-PLOD-o-kus
Named By - Othniel C. Marsh
When Named - 1878
DIET: Herbivore (plant-eater). Its main food was probably conifers, which were the dominant plant when the large sauropods lived. Secondary food sources may have included gingkos, seed ferns, cycads, bennettitaleans, ferns, club mosses, and horsetails. Diplodocus had blunt teeth (but only in the front of the jaws), useful for stripping foliage (leaves).
SIZE: Length - 90 feet (27 m) long
Height - 16 ft (5 m) tall at the hips
Weight - 10-20 tons
WHEN IT LIVED: Late Jurassic period, about 155-145 million years ago
WHERE IT LIVED: Many Diplodocus fossils have been found in the Rocky Mountains of the western USA (in Colorado, Montana, Utah, and Wyoming).
FOSSILS: The first Diplodocus fossil was found by Earl Douglass and Samuel W. Williston in 1877. Many Diplodocus fossils have been found, including a skin impression.
CLASSIFICATION:
  • Kingdom Animalia (animals)
  • Phylum Chordata (having a hollow nerve chord ending in a brain)
  • Class Archosauria (diapsids with socket-set teeth, etc.)
  • Order Saurischia - lizard-hipped dinosaurs
  • Suborder Sauropoda - large, long-necked, quadrupedal herbivores
  • Superfamily Neosauropoda - advanced sauropods
  • Family Diplodocidae - whip-tailed, peg-toothed sauropods with high spines on the vertebrae.
  • Genus Diplodocus
  • Species D. longus (type species named by Marsh, 1878)
INTERESTING
FACTS:
Diplodocus had a 26 foot (8 m) long neck and a 45 foot (14 m) long, whip-like tail. Its head was less than 2 feet long and its nostrils were at the top of the head. The front legs were shorter than its back legs, and all legs had elephant-like, five-toed feet. One toe on each foot had a thumb claw, probably for protection.

It has been determined that Diplodocus (and the other diplodocid saropods, like Apatosaurus) could not hold their necks over about 17 feet (5.4 m) off the ground.

It used to be thought that the sauropods (like Diplodocus) had a second brain. Paleontologists now think that what they thought was a second brain was just an enlargement in the spinal cord in the hip area. This enlargement was larger than the animal's tiny brain.

LINKS: A detailed page on Diplodocus.
A K-3 level Diplodocus information sheet to color!

Dinosaur Brief Fact Sheets
Abelisaurus
Aegyptosaurus
Afrovenator
Allosaurus
Altirhinus
Ankylosaurus
Apatosaurus
Archaeopteryx
Argentinosaurus
Bactrosaurus
Baryonyx
Beipiaosaurus
Brachiosaurus
Brontosaurus
Carcharodontosaurus
Carnotaurus
Cetiosaurus
Compsognathus
Corythosaurus
Cryolophosaurus
Daspletosaurus
Dilophosaurus
Diplodocus
Dimetrodon (not a dino)
Dromaeosaurus
Dryptosaurus
Dryosaurus
Edmontosaurus
Einiosaurus
Elaphrosaurus
Eoraptor
Eotyrannus
Eustreptospondylus
Gallimimus
Gasparinisaura
Giganotosaurus
Gorgosaurus
Herrerasaurus
Hesperisaurus
Iguanodon
Jaxartosaurus
Lambeosaurus
Leaellynasaura
Leptoceratops
Masiakasaurus
Massospondylus
Megaraptor
Metriacanthosaurus
Muttaburrasaurus
Nothronychus
Nqwebasaurus
Othnielia
Panoplosaurus
Parasaurolophus
Parksosaurus
Pelorosaurus
Pinacosaurus
Procompsognathus
Pteranodon
Ricardoestesia
Scutellosaurus
Saltopus
Shuvuuia
Sinornithoides
Sinosauropteryx
Spinosaurus
Stegosaurus
Stygimoloch
Suchomimus
Therizinosaurus
Titanosaurus
Torosaurus
Torvosaurus
Triceratops
Troodon
Tyrannosaurus rex (T. rex)
Ultrasauros
Utahraptor
Velociraptor
Wuerhosaurus
Zuniceratops

For more dinosaurs, see our detailed dinosaur information pages, our dinosaur coloring/information printouts, or the dinosaur dictionary, which list many more dinosaurs.

If the dinosaur you want isn't there, e-mail us.


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