Advertisement. is a user-supported site.
As a bonus, site members have access to a banner-ad-free version of the site, with print-friendly pages.
Click here to learn more.

(Already a member? Click here.)
Dinosaur and Paleontology Dictionary

Click on an underlined word for more information on that subject.
If the dinosaur or paleontology term you are looking for is not in the dictionary, please e-mail us.



(pronounced lah-boh-KAH-nee-ah) Labocania was a theropod dinosaur from the late Cretaceous period, roughly 83 to 73 million years ago. This meat-eater was about 20 feet (6 m) long, weighing roughly 1.5 tonnes. It is known from an incomplete skeleton from Mexico. Labocania was named by Molnar in 1974, named for the La Bocana Roja Formation in Mexico. The type species is L. anomalis.
The Rancho La Brea Tar Pits are a series of over 100 asphalt pits located in southern California, USA ("brea" means "tar" in Spanish). These tar pits contain many animal bones, including Ice Age fossils. Over 650 species of Pleistocene Epoch plants and animals have been found and identified at La Brea (dating from about 10,000 to 40,000 years ago), including many mammoths, mastodons, saber-toothed cats (including Smilodon fatalis), dire wolves (Canis dirus), giant sloths (Glossotherium harlani), ground sloths, bison, a western horse, short-faced bear (Arctodus simus), rodents, rabbits, birds, turtles, lizards, insects, mollusks, and many other animals and plants. One ancient human skeleton was found in the La Brea pits (about 17 bones from a woman who dates from about 9,000 years ago). Tar pits are pools of gooey asphalt that are created when crude oil seeps up from deep inside the Earth through a crack (called a fissure). The less dense elements of the crude oil evaporate, leaving a deep, conical deposit of asphalt (a very sticky mess). Water pools on the tar, attracting thirsty animals. As animals get stuck in the tar, predators are attracted to the trapped animal, and then they get stuck in the asphalt too. The animals' bones, teeth, and other hard parts are well-preserved in this environment (but they turn brown from the asphalt).


(pronounced LAB-ro-SAWR-us) Labrosaurus (meaning "greedy lizard") is an invalid name for Allosaurus, a huge, meat-eating dinosaur from the late Jurassic period, about 156 to 135 million years ago. It was a theropod that lived in what is now the western United States.


Labyrinthodonts (meaning "labyrinth tooth" because of the complex infolding of their tooth enamel) were the first amphibians. These carnivores were the first vertebrates to live on land (at least during part of their life-cycle). They probably lived near the water so they could return to it to lay eggs. Labyrinthodonts had conical teeth with maze-like enamel resembling that of the bony fishes. Labyrinthodonts lived from the late Devonian until the end of the Mesozoic (most died during the end-Triassic extinction). Labyrinthodonts include the groups Ichthyostega, Temnospondyls, Anthracosaurs (batrachosaurs), etc.


(pronounced LEE-laps) Laelaps (meaning "storm wind") is an invalid name for Dryptosaurus, a speedy, bipedal, meat-eating dinosaur (a late coelurosaur) with serrated teeth and a large claw (8 inches = 21 cm long) on the first finger of each hand. It was about 20 feet (6 m) long. It dates from the late Cretaceous period, about 70 to 65 million years ago.


Lagerstätten (meaning "fossil deposit places" in German) are geological deposits that are rich with varied, well-preserved fossils, representing a wide variety of life from a particular era. These spectacular fossil deposits represent an amazing "snapshot" in time. Some Lagerstätten include the La Brea Tar Pits (California, USA), Ediacara Hills (South Australia), Burgess Shale (B.C., Canada), Solnhofen (Germany), and Mazon Creek (Illinois, USA)


Laggania was at first thought to be an indistinct animal, perhaps a sponge. It was first found in the Burgess shale by Charles Doolittle Wolcott in the early 1900's, together with Peytoia, (thought to possibly be a jellyfish), and the shrimp-like Anomalocaris. It was later found that these three Cambrian "organisms" were all parts of the Anomalocaris (Whittington & Briggs, 1985).


Lagosuchians (or lagosuchids) were primitive reptiles that led to the dinosaurs. These long-legged archosaurs were 1.6 to 3.3 feet (0.5 to 1 m) long. They were carnivores or insectivores and date from the middle Triassic period. Examples are Lagerpeton and Marasuchus.


(pronounced LAG-o-SOOK-us) Lagosuchus (meaning "rabbit crocodile") was a dinosaur-like reptile that was an ancestor of the dinosaurs) that lived during the middle Triassic period, about 230 million years ago. It was about 40 cm long and may have weighed roughly 90 grams. Fossils have been found in Talampaya National Park, Argentina. Lagosuchus was named by Romer in 1971. The type species is L. talampayensis (Romer, 1971). In 1994, the paleontologist Paul Sereno examined Lagosuchus and concluded that L. talampayensis is probably a chimera (two or more fossils jumbled together), so Lagosuchus is considered a nomen dubium, a dubious genus. A second species of Lagosuchus, L. lilloensis, was then changed to Marasuchus, a new genus.
Lawrence Morris Lambe was a Canadian fossil hunter who named: Chasmosaurus (1914), Edmontosaurus (1917), Eoceratops (1915), Euoplocephalus (1910), Gorgosaurus (1914), Gryposaurus (1914), Panoplosaurus (1919), Stegoceras (1902), and Styracosaurus (1913). He worked for the Canadian Geographical Survey and hunted near Alberta, Canada. Lambeosaurus was named as a tribute to Lambe in 1923.


(pronounced LAM-bee-oh-SAWR-us) Lambeosaurus (named to honor paleontologist L. Lambe) was a duck-billed dinosaur with a large crest from the late Cretaceous period. This plant-eater was about 30 feet (9 m) long.
Wann Langston, Jr., is an American vertebrate paleontologist. Langston has named and described the dinosaurs Acrocanthosaurus (Stovall and Langston, 1950) and Lophorhothon (1960). He received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley in 1952. Langston was the Director of the Vertebrate Paleontology Laboratory of the Texas Memorial Museum of Science and History at the University of Texas at Austin from 1969 until 1986 (when he retired); before that, he had been the curator at the National Museum of Canada. Dr. Langston was the thesis advisor of Douglas Lawson when Lawson found the giant pterosaur Quetzalcoatlus.


Laopteryx (meaning "stone wing") was a pterosaur (not a dinosaur, but a close relative). This flying reptile lived during the late Jurassic period (about 150 to 144 million years ago) in what is now Wyoming, USA. Laopteryx was named by paleontologist Othniel Marsh in 1881. Laopteryx is a dubious genus. Also, it is uncertain where Laopteryx belongs within pterosauria. Laopteryx was thought to be a bird, but was reclassified as a pterosaur by John Ostrom in 1986.


(pronounced LAY-oh-SAWR-us) Laosaurus (meaning "stone lizard") is a doubtful genus of dinosaur that is only known from fragmentary fossils. This small, bipedal plant-eater was a hypsilophodontid ornithischian that was found in Wyoming, USA and Alberta, Canada. It lived during the late Jurassic period, roughly 156 to 145 million years ago. Laosaurus was named by C. Marsh in 1878 from a segment of this dinosaur's tail (a few vertebrae, each about 1 inch=25 mm long). The type species is L. celer. The carious specimens of Laosaurus are probably Othnielia and Dryosaurus.


(pronounced lah-PLAT-ah-SAWR-us) Laplatasaurus was a large, slender, armored sauropod dinosaur from the late Cretaceous period, roughly 83 to 65 million years ago. This plant-eater had a very long neck with light-weight vertebrae (they were grooved, which reduced their weight). This titanosaurid was about 60 feet (18 m) long, and had a relatively short tail. Laplatasaurus is known from fossils of bones and body armor found in Argentina, South America and perhaps Madagascar (an island off the SE coast of Africa). Laplatasaurus was named by paleontologist von Huene in 1927, named for the La Plata river in Argentina, which is in near where the fossil was found. The type species is L. araukanicus.
Albert-Felix de Lapparent (1905 - 1975) was a French Jesuit priest and paleontologist who made nine fossil-hunting trips (mostly alone and later with Philippe Taquet) into the Sahara desert, riding on a camel on his early trips. Lapparent named and described the dinosaurs Inosaurus tedreftensis (Lapparent, 1960) and Lusitanosaurus liassicus (Lapparent and Zbyszewski, 1957). He also found many new species of known genera, including: Apatosaurus alenquerensis (Lapparent and Zbyszewski, 1957), Astrodon pusillus( Lapparent and Zbyszewski, 1957), Brachiosaurus atalaiensis (Lapparent and Zbyszewski, 1957), Brachiosaurus nougaredi (Lapparent, 1960), Camarasaurus alenquerensis (Lapparent and Zbyszewski, 1957), Cetiosaurus mogrebiensis (Lapparent, 1955), Elaphrosaurus gautieri (Lapparent, 1960), Elaphrosaurus iguidiensis (Lapparent, 1960), Megalosaurus pombali (Lapparent and Zbyszewski, 1957), and Rebbachisaurus tamesnensis (Lapparent, 1960). He also discovered the giant crocodile Sarcosuchus (1964). The dinosaur Lapparentosaurus (Bonaparte, 1986) was named to honor Lapparent.


Lariosaurus was a small nothosaur, a reptile with flipper-like limbs that lived both on land and in the water. It was about 0.75-2 feet (20-60cm) long. It had a shorter neck and stubbier toes than other Nothosaurs. This must have limited its swimming ability. It had a streamlined body and a long, pointed tail. The back legs had five webbed toes with claws; its front legs were paddle-like flippers. Lariosaurus lived during the mid-Triassic period Fossils have been found in Europe (including Italy, Spain and France L. balsami [named by Curioni in 1847], Germany, and Switzerland, L .buzzii) and China. Lariosaurus was not dinosaur, but an aquatic reptile that may have lived in brackish and coastal waters.


Lateral means of, near, or from the side of an organism.


Laurasia was the northern supercontinent formed after Pangaea broke up during the Jurassic period. Laurasia included what are now North America, Europe, Asia, Greenland, and Iceland.


Lava is molten rock. It usually comes out of erupting volcanoes.


The Law of Superposition states that in a sequence of sedimentary rocks, the lowest layers are the oldest and the uppermost layers are the youngest.

(pronounced lee-EL-in-a-SAWR-a) Leaellynasaura was named in 1989 after Leaellyn, the daughter of Thomas A. Rich and Patricia Vickers-Rich, the namers of this dinosaur genus; saura is the feminine form of lizard in Greek. It was a small hypsilophodontid, a bipedal plant-eater 6.5 to 10 feet (2-3 m) long. It differed from other hypsilophodontids in its upper hind leg bone structure (at its base it gets wider from back to front). It had a relatively large brain and good eyesight. Leaellynasaura lived in what is now Australia during the middle Cretaceous (106 million years ago). Australia was within the Antarctic Circle during the early Cretaceous and had a long, dark winter. Leaellynasaura's large eyes would have helped it find food in this relatively dark environment.


Joseph Leidy (1823-1891) was a US anatomist who named the first dinosaurs found in the U.S.A. He excavated the first American dinosaur, Hadrosaurus, in 1858. Leidy named Antrodemus (1870, perhaps Allosaurus), Aublysodon (1868), Deinodon (1856), Diplotomodon (1868), Hadrosaurus (the first nearly-complete dinosaur skeleton and first-known duck-billed dinosaur, 1858), Palaeoscincus (1856), Thespesius (1856), Trachodon (1856), and Troodon (1856). Leidy was also the first scientist to identify many extinct species of camels, horses, sloths, tigers, and rhinoceroses.


Leidysuchus (meaning "Leidy's crocodile;" Leidy was a paleontologist) was a long-snouted crocodile that lived during the late Cretaceous period. Fossils of this swamp-dwelling reptile have been found in North America.


Lemurs are large-eyed primates from Madagascar (an island off the eastern coast of Africa). Lemurs evolved about 50 million years ago.


Lepidodendron (also known as the "scale tree") was a giant club moss (a tree-like plant) whose long trunk had bark with a diamond-shaped pattern (the scars of old, dead branches that fell off). This ancient lycopod was over 130 ft (40 m) tall; the trunk was over 6 ft (1.8 m) in diameter. Lepidodendron lived in swampy areas during the Carboniferous Period (about 360 to 286 million years ago). It has spirally-arranged leaves that ended in cones. By the time the dinosaurs lived, the giant club mosses had died out and were replaced by smaller club mosses.


Lepidosaurs are a subgroup of reptiles which includes snakes and lizards.


Lepospondyls were small, common amphibians with very long, slim bodies (Lepospondyls superficially resembled salamanders or snakes). These extinct insectivores had a long skull with sharp teeth and weak limbs. They lived during the Middle Pennsylvanian (=late Carboniferous) through the late Permian period. Lepospondyls probably lived near the water so they could return to it to lay eggs. Lepospondyls included: the snake-likeAïstopods (e.g., Ophiderpeton and Phlegethontia), the newt-like Nectrideans (e.g., Diplocaulus and Keraterpeton), the varied Microsaurs (e.g., Microbranchis and Pantylus), Adelogyrinids, and Lysorophids.


Leptauchenia was a large, rare, herbivorous mammal that browsed grasslands and woodlands. This extinct artiodactyl (even-toed hoofed mammal) lived during the Oligocene epoch in North America. It was a close relative of the more numerous oreodonts (the most common large hoofed herbivorous mammal in North America during the Oligocene) and competed with them. Anatomically, Leptauchenia was similar to the oreodont Merycoidodon (which looked like a long-legged, long-bodied pig about 4.5 ft = 1.4 m long). Classification: Superorder Ungulata (hoofed mammals), Order Artiodactyla (even-toed ungulates), Suborder Tylopoda (oreodonts and camels)


(pronounced LEP-to-SER-ah-tops) Leptoceratops (meaning "slim-horned face") was a primitive ceratopsian, a frilled, herding, quadrupedal, herbivorous dinosaur. It was about 6 feet (1.8 m) long and had a horn on its beaked snout. It lived in what is now western North America during the late Cretaceous (68-65 million years ago). It was named by the fossil hunter Barnum Brown in 1914.


Leptocycas gracilis was a cycad (a primitive seed plant) that lived during the late Triassic period. It was a palm-like tree with a long, woody trunk that lived in warm climates. This tree was about 4.8 ft (1.5 m) tall. Separate male and female plants exist (they are dioecious). This gymnosperm had long, divided leaves and produced large seed cones.


Leptopterygius (also known as Temnodontosaurus) was a late Ichthyosaur, an extinct marine reptile, not a dinosaur. It was about 30 feet (9 m) long and looked a bit like a modern-day dolphin (but it is not at all related to the dolphins). It had a torpedo-shaped body, a long, narrow, toothed snout, 4 long, narrow paddles, a fish-like tail, and a triangular dorsal fin. They were viviparous (they gave birth to live young). These fish-eaters lived in shallow seas over what is now Europe (Germany and England) during the late Jurassic period. (Order Ichthyosauria, Family Leptopterygiidae)


(pronounced le-SOH-toh-SAWR-us) Lesothosaurus (meaning "Lesotho (South Africa) lizard") was a very early ornithopod, a small, fast, bipedal, plant eating dinosaur. It lived during the early Jurassic period.


Lewisuchus was a small, fast-moving genus of archosauromorphs (not a dinosaur, but another type of reptile, a thecodont). This quadruped had a four-chambered heart, large, powerful jaws and a long tail. Its legs were not sprawling (like those of most reptiles) but were columnar, like the dinosaurs. Lewisuchus lived during the Triassic period. The type species is L. admixtus. Lewisuchus was named by Romer in 1972.


(pronounced lek-SOH-vee-SAWR-us) Lexovisaurus (meaning "Lexovian lizard," for ancient Celtic people) was a plant-eating, stegosaurid dinosaur that was about 17 feet (5 m) long and weighed about 2000 kg. It has tall, thin armored plates along its back that may have been used for protection, as a display, or for temperature regulation. For protection, it also had 2 shoulder spines (3.75 feet = 1.1 m long and 10.5 inches = .275 m wide), and spikes on its tail (at least one pair, maybe more). This quadruped lived during the middle Jurassic period, about 169 to 156 million years ago. Incomplete fossils have been found in England and France. The type species is L. durobrivenses. Lexovisaurus was named by Hoffstetter in 1957. Its name means "Lexovix lizard;" it was named after the Gallic people of Lyons, France.


The Lias epoch was the early part of the Jurassic period, about 206 to 180 million years ago.
Libellulium was a large, ancient dragonfly that lived during the Jurassic period, roughly 150 million years ago. Libellulium body was about 57 mm long; it had a wingspan of 145 mm. Fossils of this long-extinct flying insect have been found in Solenhofen Limestone in Bavaria, Germany, Europe. Libellulium longilatum (the type species) was named by Germar in 1837.
Ligaments are tough threads or sheets of collagen (a protein) that support the joints between bones and muscles.


(pronounced LICK-hoh-lih-SAWR-us) Likhoelesaurus (named for the South African town Li Khole, South Africa, where the fossils were found) was a theropod dinosaur from the late Triassic period, roughly 225 to 208 million years ago. This size of this meat-eater is unknown. It is known from only some 2.7 inch (70 mm) long teeth which were found in South Africa. Likhoelesaurus was named by Ellenberger in 1972. The type species is L. ingens. This genus is a nomen nudum, a genus which has been insufficiently described. Likhoelesaurus may be the same as Basutodon, whose teeth are similar.
(pronounced LIL-ee-en-STER-nus) Liliensternus (named to honor German paleontologist Hugo Rühle von Lilienstern (1882-1946)) was a meat-eating dinosaur, a theropod from the late Triassic period, about 222 - 219 million years ago. This speedy, bipedal dinosaur had long, strong legs, short arms, a long neck, and ahead with a triangular hole in front of the eyes. It was about 16 ft (5 m) long. It had five-fingered hands; the 1st and 5th fingers were small. Liliensternus may have had a crest on its head (like its close relative, Dilophosaurus). Fossils have been found in Germany and France. The type species is L. liliensterni. Liliensternus was named by Welles in 1984.
The Lilliput Effect (named by Adam Urbanek, 1993) notes the appearance of small body size in surviving animals after an extinction event. The name Lilliput is from Jonathan Swift's novel Gulliver's Travels; in the novel, the Lilliputians were very tiny people.
Carolus Linnaeus

The Linnean System is a method of classifying organisms based on a simple hierarchical structure. Organisms are divided into groups using the following system: Kingdom, Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus and Species.


(pronounced LIE-oh-PLOOR-oh-don) Liopleurodon (meaning "smooth-sided tooth") was the biggest plesiosaur, up to 39-49 feet (12-15 m). It had a long body with a large head, a short neck, powerful jaws and teeth, and four long, wide, strong flippers. The skull was 10 feet (3 m) long. Fossils were found in England, France, Germany, and eastern Europe. It lived during the late Jurassic period. Liopleurodon was not a dinosaur, but another type of extinct reptile. Liopleurodon was named by French paleontologist H.E. Sauvage in 1873. L. ferox (Martill, 1991) is the biggest-known species of Liopleurodon


A living fossil (an oxymoron) is an organism that lived during ancient times and still lives today, relatively unchanged, like the Coelacanth, the horseshoe crab, the gingko tree, cycads, horsetails, club mosses, and many, many other well-adapted organisms.


The "Lizard-Hipped" dinosaurs (Saurischians) had a hip structure similar to that of lizards. Oddly enough, these dinosaurs were the ancestors of the birds. They are divided into the theropods (bipedal carnivores like Allosaurus) and sauropodomorphs (huge, quadrupedal herbivores like Apatosaurus).


Lizards are fast-moving reptilian predators with powerful jaws; the dinosaurs were not lizards. The first lizards evolved during the late Permian period; these small lizards were insect eaters. Lizards had a boom during the Jurassic period, when all the major modern groups of lizards came into existence. Lizards and snakes are closely related, but lizard are an earlier group. Other, more distant living relatives of lizards include the crocodilians, tortoises, and turtles. Classification: Subclass Anapsida, Order Squamata (snakes and lizards), Suborder Laecertilia (lizards).


Lobe-finned fish (Crossopterygii) are bony fish whose fins are supported on fleshy lobes. Lobe-finned fish appeared during the Silurian period (roughly 420 million years ago). The Coelacanth and the extinct Rhipidistians are examples of lobe-finned fish.


Longisquama was a small, early archosaur (not a dinosaur) that lived during the early Triassic period, about 245 million years ago. This unusual reptile was about 6 inches long, had a long tail, a pointed snout, and long feather-like scales coming out of its back (possibly arranged in pairs). These scales may have been used for gliding from trees. Fossils have been found in Kyrgyzstan. Longisquama was named by Alexander Sharov in 1970. The type species is L. insignis.


The long-necked dinosaurs were sauropods like Diplodocus, Apatosaurus, and Brachiosaurus.


(pronounced "LOF-or-HOH-thon") Lophorhothon (meaning "crested snout") was a duck-billed dinosaur that lived during the late Cretaceous period, about 83-73 million years ago. This plant-eater was about 15 ft (4.5 m) long; it had a deep skull, with wide eye holes. It had a short snout with a small, pyramid-shaped crest located above the nose. Fossils have been found in Alabama, North Carolina, and perhas Mississippi, USA. Lophorhothon was named by Wann Langston, Jr., in 1960. The type species is L. atopus.


Losillasaurus was a huge, plant-eating dinosaur with a long neck, long, whip-like tail, small head, and bulky body. This diplodocid sauropod lived during the late Jurassic to early Cretaceous periods, roughly 145 million years ago. Incomplete fossils were found in the Collano Rock Formation, Spain. The type species is L. giganteus; it was named by paleontologists M.L. Casanovas, J.V. Santafe and J.L. Sanz in 2001.


(pronounced loh-reen-YAH-noh-SAWR-us) Lourinhanosaurus (meaning "Lourinhã Formation [a rock formation in west-central Portugal] lizard") was a bipedal, meat-eating dinosaur that lived during the late Jurassic period (roughly145 million years ago). It was about 14.8 feet (4.5 m) long. This allosaurid carnosaur had longer vertebrae that other allosaurids; it lived in what is now Portugal. The type species is L. antunesi; Lourinhanosaurus was named by Octávio Mateus in 1998. This dinosaur is known from a partial skeleton, 32 gastroliths (stones that were swallowed to help digestion) in the rib cage, and some fossilized eggs.


(pronounced loh-reen-yah-SAWR-us) Lourinhasaurus (meaning "Lourinhã Formation [a rock formation in west-central Portugal] lizard") was a quadrupedal, plant-eating dinosaur that lived during the late Jurassic period (roughly145 million years ago). It was about 57 feet (17 m) long. This sauropod it lived in what is now Portugal. The type species is L. alenquerensis (it was found in described in 1957 by de Lapparent and Zbyszewski, who originally thought it was Apatosaurus); Lourinhasaurus was named by Dantas, Sanz, Da Silva, Ortega, Dos Santos and Cachao in 1998. This dinosaur is known from three partial skeletons and about 100 gastroliths.
Low seasonality is when there is only a small difference in temperature between the seasons (with mild winters and summers). Compare to stong seasonality, in which the difference in temperatures between the seasons is big (for example, with a hot summer and a cold winter).

(pronounced LOO-FUHNG-oh-SAWR-us) Lufengosaurus (meaning "Lufeng (China) lizard") was a plateosaurid prosauropod, a long-necked, small-headed, quadrupedal, herbivorous dinosaur with widely spaced teeth. It was about 20 feet (6 m) long. This large plant-eater lived in what is now China during the early Jurassic period (208-200 million years ago). Lufengosaurus was named by Chung Chien Young in 1941.


Richard Swann Lull (1867-1957) was a vertebrate paleontologist who headed Yale's Peabody Museum (1922-1936) . Lull said that the best fossils collecting could be done in the basement of the Peabody Museum. He named the following: Anatosaurus Lull and Wright, 1942 (an obsolete name for Edmontosaurus), Anchisauripus (an ichnogenus of theropod dinosaur) in 1904, Diceratops Hatcher vide Lull, 1905, Proceratops Lull, 1906.
Lycaenops (meaning "wolf face") was a small therapsid, a reptilian ancestor of the mammals. It was about 3.25 feet (1 m) long, walked on 4 long legs and had a pointed tail. It was about 16 feet (5 m) long. This meat-eater may have hunted in packs, preying upon plant-eaters like Moschops. It had long, deep-ropoted canine teeth (fangs); its skull was deeper in front to hold these large teeth. It lived during the late Permian period, before the dinosaurs evolved. Fossils have been found in South Africa and European Russia. Classification: Subclass Synapsida, Order Therapsida (advanced synapsids and the direct ancestors of mammals).


Lycopsids (club mosses) are primitive, vascular plants (pteridophytes) that evolved over 375 million years ago (during the Devonian). Huge club mosses went extinct during the Permian mass extinction; smaller ones lived during the time of the dinosaurs. These plants live near moisture (in order for their spores to germinate). These fast-growing, resilient plants propagate with rhizomes (underground stems).


Lycorhinus (meaning "wolf snout") was a heterodontosaurid dinosaur known only from a lower jaw bone with very long and sharp canine teeth. It was a small, bipedal, herbivorous dinosaur from South Africa during the early Jurassic period (208-200 million years ago). It was named by S. H. Haughton in 1924.


Lystrosaurus (meaning "shovel lizard") was a heavily-built, early Triassic period quadruped (a dicynodont, a mammal-like reptile) with a short, stubby tail. Instead of teeth it had two tusk-like fangs made of horn. It was a plant-eater about 3 feet (1 m) long and about 200 pounds. It lived in herds near lakes and swamps. Since fossils of Lystrosaurus had been found in South Africa, India, Europe, and Asia, finding Lystrosaurus fossils in Antarctica was further evidence that during the late Permian period and Triassic period, the continents were connected into one large continent (called Gondwananland). They may have been hunted by Chasmatosaurus, a carnivorous thecodont.
Dinosaur and Paleontology Dictionary

Click on an underlined word for more information on that subject.
If the dinosaur or paleontology term you are looking for is not in the dictionary, please e-mail us.

Enchanted Learning®
Over 35,000 Web Pages
Sample Pages for Prospective Subscribers, or click below

Overview of Site
What's New
Enchanted Learning Home
Monthly Activity Calendar
Books to Print
Site Index

K-3 Themes
Little Explorers
Picture dictionary
PreK/K Activities
Rebus Rhymes
Cloze Activities
Essay Topics
Writing Activities
Parts of Speech

The Test of Time

Animal Printouts
Biology Label Printouts
Food Chain
Human Anatomy
Physical Sciences: K-12
The Earth
Japanese (Romaji)
US History

Other Topics
Art and Artists
College Finder
Graphic Organizers
Label Me! Printouts
Word Wheels

Click to read our Privacy Policy


Enchanted Learning Search

Search the Enchanted Learning website for:



Copyright ©1996-2018 ------ How to cite a web page