Fun Arenysaurus Facts For Kids

Moumita Dutta
Oct 20, 2022 By Moumita Dutta
Originally Published on Feb 26, 2022
Edited by Christina Harrison
Fact-checked by Sakshi Raturi
Arenysaurus facts are all about the Earth dwellers of ancient history.
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Age: 3-18
Read time: 8.6 Min

The Arenysaurus ardevoli‭ was a Hadrosaurid dinosaur that roamed the Earth around 70-66 million years ago during the late Cretaceous era. Arenysaurus fossils were discovered in a village called Arén or Areny, located in northern Spain. A well-preserved skeleton and partial skull was extracted from the Tremp Formation with the toil and efforts of the native people who aided the group of paleontologists at work. 

In 2009, the type species was attributed identification by a group of researchers from Spain, namely Xabier Pereda-Suberbiola, ‬José Luis Barco, José Ignacio Canudo, José Ignacio Ruiz-Omeñaca, Oriol Oms, and Cruzado-Caballero. Paleontologists and researchers have studied the relationship of the species with other Lambeosaurines to conclude that the Arenysaurus ardevoli‭ was more of a basal member of the subfamily of Lambeosaurinae. 

A paleogeographical link between the European and Asian taxa of the late Cretaceous period could be established. However, the Arenysaurus ardevoli dwelled on the Earth during the period when Saurolophine Hadrosaurs had already supplanted Lambeosaurine Hadrosaurids in other places like present-day North America.

If you want to learn some more really interesting facts about the Arenysaurus ardevoli‭ then continue reading!

Arenysaurus Interesting Facts

How do you pronounce 'Arenysaurus'?

The term Arenysaurus is pentasyllabic, so you can easily break it down into 'A-re-ne-sore-us' for ease of pronunciation. The name of the genus is a reference to Arén (the location where remnants were excavated), while the specific epithet 'ardevoli‭' has been attributed in honor of Lluís Ardèvol, a geologist.

What type of dinosaur was an Arenysaurus?

The Arenysaurus ardevoli‭ was a Hadrosaurid dinosaur belonging to the Arenysaurus genus and Reptilia class. It is further classified as a non-avian Lambeosaurine.

In which geological period did the Arenysaurus roam the Earth?

This dinosaur species existed about 66 million years ago in the Maastrichtian Age of the late Cretaceous epoch.

When did the Arenysaurus become Extinct?

The Arenysaurus last survived on the Earth during the late Cretaceous era. It is believed that the genus Arenysaurus was completely wiped out with the Cretaceous-Paleogene or Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction event that took place about 66 million years ago.

Where did the Arenysaurus live?

Fossils of the species were unearthed from the Tremp Formation of the Pyrenees Mountains located in modern-day Spain. So, it would be safe to say that these dinosaurs were found across Europe during the late Cretaceous era. In fact, they are believed to have been one of the last Hadrosaurid dinosaurs to have lived in Europe.

What was the Arenysaurus' habitat?

Since a fossil record was discovered from the Pyrenees Mountains, it can be inferred that the species belonging to the late Cretaceous era was suited to the terrestrial habitat of Europe. Moreover, the dietary requirements of the species point to a dependence on the vegetative matter that was abundantly available in forested areas. It can be concluded from the available evidence that, in all probability, these Hadrosaurid dinosaurs dwelled in ridges.

Who did the Arenysaurus live with?

More data is required to ascertain the social behavior of the Arenysaurus. Perhaps the dinosaur formed a group while foraging, or maybe it preferred to stay solitary. The behavior of the species during the breeding period or the dinosaur's disposition towards its mating partner is also not known. Perhaps they displayed some signs of territorial behavior towards their male opponents during the breeding period, but there's a lack of evidence to justify the statement.

How long did an Arenysaurus live?

The average life span of these dinosaurs couldn't be determined owing to the dearth of relevant research data. However, the Arenysaurus belongs to the Hadrosauridae family. Hadrosaurs generally would live for around 25-30 years, so it can be assumed the Arenysaurus would have had a similar lifespan. It is important to realize that such an assumption may not hold true in the future when hopefully, newer techniques will help determine find the proper lifespan of dinosaurs.

How did they reproduce?

Factual evidence about the breeding season, behaviorisms, sexual maturity, parental care, gestation, and the incubation period is unknown; hence, no conclusive statements can be made regarding the reproduction method of the species. However, it's known that males and females engaged in oviparous reproduction, which implies that after copulation, females laid eggs just like modern-day birds do. These eggs were incubated for a particular period after which young emerged. Information about the clutch size of the species is also lacking. Generally, young are capable of surviving on their own after hatching from eggs.

Arenysaurus Fun Facts

What did the Arenysaurus look like?

Fossils of the new Lambeosaurine recovered from the dig site of the Tremp Formation constituted a skeleton and a partial skull. These dinosaurs were moderate in size, but the height couldn't be deciphered. Characteristic of the Hadrosauridae family, the cranial crests of these dinosaurs were hollow. The frontal dome of the dinosaur was pronounced. 

Apart from the few structural descriptions, other details of the appearance of the species such as the color and texture of the skin, iris color, length of the tail, sharpness of claws or teeth, and details of other features could not be deciphered. So, it cannot be said whether their skin was scaly or slimy, if it had a tapering tail like the Megaraptor, or if its body displayed a wide variety of colors. It is known that, unlike the Jinfengopteryx, the species was non-avian due to the absence of traces of feathers on fossilized remnants.

Additionally, since the Arenysaurus ardevoli engaged in a herbivorous diet, it can be concluded that this dinosaur did not possess serrated teeth, like that of the Tyrannosaurus rex, suited for grinding bones and tearing apart the flesh of prey.

Arenysaurus fossils shed new light on the appearance and bodily structure of the species.
*We've been unable to source an image of an Arenysaurus and have used an image of a T-rex instead. If you are able to provide us with a royalty-free image of an Arenysaurus, we would be happy to credit you. Please contact us at hello@kidadl.com.

How many bones did an Arenysaurus have?

Skeletal remains retrieved from excavation sites qualify the Arenysaurus as one of the most complete dinosaur fossil records with a skeleton and partial skull. Apart from the partial skull, mandibular remains and postcranial sections including limb bones, a girdle, and vertebrae of the species have helped to analyze the history of this new Lambeosaurine of the late Cretaceous period. 

However, despite the almost complete skeletal structure, researchers are still oblivious of the total number of bones that make up the species belonging to the late Cretaceous epoch. These bones have been made available to the public eye by displaying them in the town's museum. So, if you ever plan to visit Spain, make sure to take your kids to the museum and give them a visual treat by showing them these fossils.

How did they communicate?

It can be deduced that, like all other dinosaur species, these Hadrosaurid dinosaurs communicated through body language as well as vocalizations. Among various forms of vocalizations, bellowing sounds were common among dinosaurs.

How big was the Arenysaurus?

The Arenysaurus had an approximate measurement of 16.4-19.7 ft (5-6 m) in length. The height of the dinosaur couldn't be determined. However, the species was less than half the size of the Shantungosaurus giganteus. The Hadrosaurid that lived in China measured around 54 ft (16.4 m) in length, qualifying it as the largest known Hadrosaurid to date. These Hadrosaurids were quite small when compared with the length of the Adamantisaurus mezzalirai, measuring around 60 ft (18.2 m).

How fast could an Arenysaurus move?

The running speed of an Arenysaurus remains to be deciphered. Since the species was herbivorous, it can be assumed that as a part of its survival instincts, it was agile and flexible in its movements to save itself from predators. Herbivorous dinosaurs were generally mobile as they navigated from one place to the other in search of food.

How much did an Arenysaurus weigh?

The weight of these dinosaurs is still a mystery. Nevertheless, it can be formulated from the size of the dinosaur that it didn't possess an extremely bulky stature. In comparison to the Shantungosaurus giganteus that weighed about 35,274 lb (16,000 kg), the Arenysaurus ardevoli‭ was pretty lightweight.

What were male and female names of the species?

Generally, dinosaurs don't have gender-specific names. They're just referred to as males and females.

What would you call a baby Arenysaurus?

Just like all other dinosaur babies that are born from eggs, a baby Arenysausus can be regarded as a hatchling or just a young.

How aggressive were they?

Although there is no factual evidence to point at the behaviorisms of the dinosaur, it would be safe to say that the species was not as aggressive as the Tyrannosaurus rex owing to its herbivorous diet. However, it is not known whether the dinosaur engaged in fighting or aggression in self-defense. It is pretty difficult to imagine the Arenysaurus ardevoli‭ biting off the skin of its opponent. Then again, there's no certainty that the structure of the teeth would determine how violent the dinosaur was because the Skorpiovenator possessed comparatively weak teeth, but it was capable of indulging in a carnivorous diet. Moreover, the complete dental structure or jawbones of the Arenysaurus are missing to offer an insight into its dietary habits.

Did you know…

The Arenysaurus wasn't the only genus to face extinction during the mass Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction event that occurred approximately 66 million years ago. A vast expanse of flora and fauna on the Earth was impacted and annihilated (three quarters, to be precise). Fossils of the Tyrannosaurus, the Torosaurus, the Triceratops, the Pachycephalosaurus, and the Ankylosaurus excavated from several formations bear evidence of the existence of major dinosaur clades during the Maastrichtian period.

Reconstructed fossil remains of Arenysaurus ardevoli‭ have been preserved and displayed at the Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales, or the National Museum of Natural Sciences in Spain.

The tribute to the town of Arén in Spain has a special story behind it. This small village with a population of 350 individuals played an important role in the excavation of the Arenysaurus. Under the guidance of paleontologists who were stationed at this quaint little village in Spain, villagers worked daily all through the day to help with excavations. This enthusiasm and help received really touched the paleontologists, and as a tribute to the village, they named the dinosaur and the dig site after Arén.

The genus name Arenysaurus stands for 'Areny lizard'. Paleontologists managed to recover only one well-preserved specimen of an Arenysaurus from the dig site in northern Spain.

Not much is known about the behavioral pattern of the Arenysaurus ardevoli‭. It is not known for sure whether the species was greedy or territorial.

*We've been unable to source an image of an Arenysaurus and have used an image of an Edmontonia instead. If you are able to provide us with a royalty-free image of an Arenysaurus, we would be happy to credit you. Please contact us at hello@kidadl.com. 

Arenysaurus Facts

What Did They Prey On?

N/A

what Type of Animal were they?

Herbivores

Average Litter Size?

N/A

What Did They Look Like?

N/A

How Much Did They Weigh?

N/A

Skin Type

N/A

How Long Were They?

16.4-19.7 ft (5-6 m)

How Tall Were They?

N/A

Kingdom

Animalia

Class

Reptilia

Genus

Arenysaurus

Family

Hadrosauridae

Scientific Name

Arenysaurus ardevoli‭

What Were Their Main Threats?

Natural disasters

What Habitat Did They Live In?

Terrestrial ecosystems

Where Did They Live?

Spain (Tremp Formation)
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Written by Moumita Dutta

Bachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

Moumita Dutta picture

Moumita DuttaBachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

A content writer and editor with a passion for sports, Moumita has honed her skills in producing compelling match reports and stories about sporting heroes. She holds a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management, Calcutta University, alongside a postgraduate diploma in Sports Management.

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