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Dinosaur Diets Trivia Quiz
Some dinosaurs were mostly carnivorous (meat-eaters). Others survived on an herbivorous (vegetable) diet. But can you sort these beasts into the correct category? This is a renovated/adopted version of an old quiz by author flynn_17
A classification quiz
Estimated time: 3 mins.
Last 3 plays: Guest 173 (6/10), Iva9Brain (6/10), CardoQ (10/10).
* Drag / drop or click on the choices above to move them to the correct categories.
Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
The Allosaurus lived between 145 and 155 million years ago, during the Jurassic period. Its name means "strange lizard" because the bones of its vertebrae were shaped differently to any previously known dinosaur at the time of its identification in 1877.
During the ten million years of its existence, it would probably have been the most effective predator alive. Fossil remains suggest that a fully-grown Allosaurus would have reached between nine and eleven metres in length. It is classified as a theropod, having three toes or claws on each limb.
2. Tyrannosaurus Rex
Perhaps the most famous of all carnivorous dinosaurs, the Tyrannosaurus Rex was alive during the Cretaceous period, between 68 and 66 million years ago. It lived mostly in what is now North America, and the first fossil evidence of its existence - some large teeth - was unearthed in Colorado in 1874.
A fully-grown T-Rex would have been around 12 meters long and six meters high. Its large head and strong jaws meant that it would have been able to grasp hold of its prey and not let go.
The name "Carnotaurus" means "carnivorous bull", because of its meat-eating diet and the pair of small bull-like horns on its head. Carnotaurus lived during the Cretaceous period, and was one of the smaller meat-eating dinosaurs, reaching around seven meters long.
At the time of writing (2022), only a single fossil Carnotaurus had been discovered, in the form of an almost-complete skeleton found in Argentina.
The Spinosaurus (or "spine lizard") is one of the largest known carnivorous dinosaurs, with fossil evidence suggesting fully-grown adults could reach over 14 meters in length - or possibly even longer. It dates from the late Cretaceous period, around 100 million years ago, and lived in North Africa.
Unlike some other large carnivorous dinosaurs, the Spinosaurus had relatively well-developed forelimbs, and may sometimes have moved using all four of them. It is also believed to have been semi-aquatic and hunted for fish by swimming. The "spines" which gave it its name are long vertebral extensions which are believed to have supported a large fleshy "sail" on its back.
The Velociraptor has achieved particular fame in modern times through its starring role in the "Jurassic Park" book and films, starting with the original novel in 1990, although the real velociraptor was smaller than the one featured in the film, being roughly the size of a turkey. Like a turkey, it was also feathered - a feature discovered as recently as 2007.
It is another dinosaur from the Cretaceous period and lived in Asia (in particular the regions now called Mongolia and China). Its name means "swift thief", and it is believed to have hunted in packs, indicating a relatively advanced degree of intelligence.
The Diplodocus lived around 150 million years ago, during the Jurassic period. Its name means "double beam", in reference to the double-beamed bones in its tail. The first Diplodocus fossils were discovered in 1877 in Colorado. It is one of several massive herbivorous dinosaur species which had a long neck attached to a large body and with a correspondingly long tail.
There has been considerable disagreement between scientists as to whether the Diplodocus was able to raise its long neck vertically, allowing it to reach vegetation in tall trees, or whether in fact it rarely lifted it above the horizontal. We may never know for certain.
The name "Ankylosaurus" means "fused lizard", because many of the bones in its skull and the rest of its body were fused together, helping to make it stronger and more rigid.
It is believed to have lived at the very end of the Cretaceous period, around 66 million years ago, and would therefore have been a likely prey for its contemporary, the Tyrannosaurus Rex. However, its thick hide and the bony plates covering its back would have provided some degree of protection. It also had a club-like extension at the end of its tail, which it may have used as a defensive weapon.
The Triceratops is one of the most recognisable herbivorous dinosaurs, especially from the three horns on its head (two above its eyes and one on the end of its snout) which give it its name of "three-horned face". A great many fossil Triceratops remains have been found dating back to the late Cretaceous period, suggesting it was one of the most abundant dinosaurs of that era. An adult Triceratops would have been up to nine meters in length and three meters high.
Another familiar herbivorous dinosaur is the Stegosaurus, which is easily recognised by the double row of bony plates that ran down its back and onto its tail, which was tipped with spikes. When the first Stegosaurus fossils were being analysed in the 1870s, the palaeontologist Othniel Marsh believed that the bony plates lay flat on the creature's back like roof slates, and thus gave it its name, which means "roofed lizard".
The Stegosaurus was alive during the late Jurassic period, around 150 million years ago. Fossils have been found both in North America and in Portugal, and three distinct sub-species have been identified.
The Brontosaurus is another large herbivorous dinosaur, which was around during the late Jurassic period (around 150 million years ago), and this a contemporary of both the Stegosaurus and the Allosaurus. The name means "thunder lizard", inspired by its large size; the biggest specimens are believed to have reached up to 22 meters in length.
The Brontosaurus is similar in shape to the Diplodocus, with its long neck and tail. For a long time, it was considered to be a sub-species of the Apatosaurus, but 21st century research now lists it as a separate genus.