Noasaurus leali

  • Pronounced:  No - uh - Sore - us

  • Diet:  Carnivore (meat-eater)

  • Name Means:  "Northwestern Argentina Lizard"

  • Length:  3-10 ft.(1-3 meters)

  • Height:  1-3 ft.(1 meters)

  • Weight:  33 lb.

  • Time:  Late Cretaceous - 73 million years ago

Fossil remains for this Dinosaur have been found in South America

Noasaurus was a small South American meat-eater. It lived a time when some of the biggest dinosaurs ever to live were roaming South America. Although it had some of the same characteristics as raptors that lived in North America and Asia, it was not a close relative. This little hunter is a good example of how dinosaurs filled lots of roles in the environment. Not only were dinosaurs the biggest hunters, they were also among the smallest.

When initially described in 1980, this dinosaur was assigned to the Noasauridae. In 1991 this assignation was deemed invalid and it was determined that Noasaurus belonged to the Abelisauridae. Its unique foot claw has caused a great deal of discussion regarding the evolutionary lineage of this dinosaur. It was assigned to the Abelisauridae primarily on the resemblance of its lower jaw to that of the less gracile jaw of Abelisaurus.

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