Cryolophosaurus (Cold crest lizard)
William R. Hammer & William J. Hickerson - 1994
Estimated 6 meters long
C. ellioti (type)
Antarctica - Hanson Formation
Early Jurassic, 193 million years ago
Cryolophosaurus, meaning “cold crest lizard,” was a large theropod dinosaur that lived during the Early Jurassic Period, approximately 193 million years ago. It was discovered in Antarctica and is one of the few dinosaurs known to have lived in this region.
The defining characteristic of Cryolophosaurus was its crest, which was a bony protrusion on its skull that rose into a downward-curving shape, somewhat resembling a Spanish comb. The purpose of this crest remains unknown, but it may have been used for display or communication with other Cryolophosaurus individuals.
Cryolophosaurus was estimated to have measured about 6 meters in length and weigh up to 1 ton. It was a bipedal dinosaur with long, slender legs and a relatively short body, suggesting that it was a fast runner. Its arms were short, but its hands were equipped with sharp claws, which were probably used for hunting and defending itself from predators.
Fossil evidence has shown that Cryolophosaurus was a carnivore, with teeth that were sharp and serrated, ideal for tearing into meat. It probably preyed on other dinosaurs and smaller animals that lived in its environment.
The discovery of Cryolophosaurus in Antarctica was an exciting moment for paleontologists, as it provided valuable information about the ancient ecosystem and climate of this region. It also offered insight into the early evolution of theropod dinosaurs, a group that includes some of the largest and most well-known dinosaurs, such as Tyrannosaurus Rex and Velociraptor.