Maiasaura peeblesorum

  • Pronounced:  My - uh - Sore - uh

  • Diet:  Herbivore (plant eater)

  • Name Means:  "Good Mother Lizard"

  • Length:  30 feet (9 m)

  • Height:  12 feet (4 m)

  • Weight:  2 tons (1,800 kilos)

  • Time:  Late Cretaceous - 80 MYA

Fossil remains for this Dinosaur have been found in North America

Maiasaura is one of the most famous of the duck-billed dinosaurs because it proved to many scientists that dinosaurs had nests, nesting grounds and took care of their young. It was a medium-sized member of the duck-billed hadrosaur family, which included ParaSaurolophus  and Lambeosaurus  . More than 200 specimens of this dinosaur have been discovered, making it one of the best known. What is especially interesting is that many babies and young adults have been found.

Jack Horner's discovery of Maiasaura set the world of paleontology on fire and also rekindled public interest in dinosaurs. Until its discovery, most scientists thought that dinosaurs laid their eggs, left them on their own to hatch and then let the babies fend for themselves. The nests Horner discovered seem to clearly show evidence of babies that remained in the nest for some time and would have been cared for by adults.

Apart from the spectacular nature of its discovery, and the number of specimens, Maiasaura was a fairly typical, mid-sized hadrosaus . It had no real crest, but it did have a small spike-like crest in front of its eyes.

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