Mussaurus patagonicus

  • Pronounced:  MOOSE-sore-us

  • Diet:  Herbivore (Plant eater )

  • Name Means:  "Mouse lizard"

  • Length:  10 feet (3 meters)

  • Height: 

  • Weight: 

  • Time:  Late Triassic - 220 mya

Fossil remains for this Dinosaur have been found in South America, Argentina

The first Mussaurus ever discovered was that of a very small baby. It lived in the Triassic Period, making it one of the earliest dinosaurs, and is believed to belong to the family of dinosaurs from which the huge sauropods eventually evolved. Mussaurus was totally unlike its huge descendants, however, as it was a small, fast plant eater.

Mussaurus was found in the mid 1970s and named in 1979 by Jose Bonaparte and Martin Vince. Mussaurus got its name because the first specimens found were babies in a nest and they were about the size of a mouse. Since then, sub-adults and adults have been found that scientists believe are the same species. These specimens show that Mussaurus grew to around 10 feet long. At the time of Mussaurus's discovery, very few dinosaur babies and nests had been found. A lot of information about dinosaur social behavior and the rearing of their young resulted from their discovery. Mussaurus were prosauropods and are thought to hold clues to the origins of the sauropods.

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