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  • Writer's pictureJurassic Forest - Digital

Edmontosaurus - Edmonton's Star Dinosaur.

We couldn't have a blog about Albertan Dinosaurs without first mentioning the one and only Edmontosaurus! With a whopping height of 13 feet and length of 39 feet, you'd be forgiven for thinking this Jurassic giant was a carnivore but this gentle dino was actually a strict herbivore feasting on vegetation including pine needles and pine cones. Yum!

Edmontosaurus - Dinosaur from Edmonton
Edmontosaurus regalis. Figure 2 from Xing et al, 2017.

History of the Edmontosaurus:

Edmontosaurus lived in the late Cretaceous Period (approximately 73 to 66 million years ago) and includes two separate species: E. regalis (larger) and E. annectens (smaller). One of the most widely studied dinosaurs, Edmontosaurus is a type of Hardrosaur which is another name for a duckbilled dinosaur.

Edmontosaurus Appearance:

There is a vast amount of evidence of skin and tissue so paleontologists have a good idea of what Edmontosaurus possibly looked like. Picture a huge dinosaur with a duckbill and rows of tightly-packed teeth to munch on rough vegetation, almost like a living lawnmower! They also had a fleshy crest on top of their head similar to a rooster which was possibly brightly colored. As a relatively docile creature, they developed super thick skin to ward off their biggest predator - Tyrannosaurus and there is even fossil evidence of wounds that have healed from a T-Rex attack!

Edmontosaurus Regalis Realistic
Edmontosaurus Regalis. The Canadian Encyclopedia.

Edmontosaurus Social Behaviour:

We suspect that the Edmontosaurus lived in herds (likely in their hundreds!) because their fossils have been found in very large bone beds. Much like herding animals today that graze on grass, Edmontosaurus was a very sociable dinosaur that traveled and nested in large groups. Possibly covering large distances due to the substantial evidence of fossilized dinosaur prints that we have found.

Did you know we have our very own Hardrosaur here at Jurassic Forest? See if you can spot him on your next visit! And keep an eye out for Tyrannosaurus Rex.


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