Daspletosaurus (Frightful lizard)
Dale Alan Russell - 1970
Estimated up to 30 feet in lenght
D. torosus (type), D. horneri
Canada, Alberta, Judith River Group - USA, Montana, Judith River Formation
Late Cretaceous, 77-74 million years ago
Daspletosaurus was a large carnivorous dinosaur that lived during the Late Cretaceous period, approximately 77 to 74 million years ago, in what is now North America. Its name means “frightful lizard,” and it was a member of the tyrannosaurid family, closely related to the better-known Tyrannosaurus rex.
Daspletosaurus was a formidable predator, measuring up to 30 feet in length and weighing as much as 2.5 tons. It had a massive skull with a powerful jaw and sharp teeth up to 8 inches long. Its eyes faced forward, giving it stereoscopic vision and the ability to judge distance accurately, making it an efficient hunter.
Recent research suggests that Daspletosaurus was a social animal, living in groups similar to those of modern-day wolves. Evidence of bite marks and injuries on the skulls of some specimens suggests that they engaged in intraspecific combat, possibly for dominance within the group.
Daspletosaurus was one of the last of the tyrannosaurids to exist before the mass extinction event that wiped out the dinosaurs 66 million years ago. It was also one of the last large apex predators to roam North America before the arrival of humans.
Fossils of Daspletosaurus have been found in the western United States and Canada, and they have provided valuable insights into the behavior and evolution of these fascinating creatures. Despite its intimidating appearance and ferocious reputation, Daspletosaurus was a fascinating and complex animal that continues to intrigue paleontologists and dinosaur enthusiasts alike.