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Are you interested in knowing more about the pre-history of our world? If yes, then should surely take out some time as we are about to discuss the Dinosauria theropoda genus of Magnosaurus. Friedrich Von Huene was the first one to classify the Magnosaurus nethercombensis in 1923 from skeletal remains found in the nineteenth century. The partial remains were given the holotype OUM J12143 and it consisted of jawbones, hip bones, as well as remains of a tibia. Even though the specimen was thought to be that of a juvenile, but was later said to be from an animal that might be the predecessor of megalosaurus dinosaurs. The nineteenth century remains were associated with the Inferior Oolite Group that contained remains from the Middle Jurassic era. So, the species from this genus are said to have existed around 168-170 million years ago. Von Huene named the dinosaur Magnosaurus to mean a large lizard. So, keep reading to know Magnosaurus facts.
The pronunciation of the word Magnosaurus is 'mag-noe-sore-us'. You are right if the dinosaur species of Megalosaurus nethercombensis came to your mind, as it's a species of the Magnosaurus genus that was originally found in Dorset, England. And, the dinosaur is also often known as the Magnosaurus nethercombensis.
The Magnosaurus genus is a part of the larger group of theropod dinosaurs that share the common characteristics of hollow bones and three toed feet. This genus contains the well known species of Megalosaurus nethercombensis from England. Other dinosaur species attributed to the genus include the Magnosaurus lydekkeri and the Magnosaurus woodwardi. Even type species such as the eustreptospondylus, megalosaurus as well as sarcosaurus are at times attributed to this genus. The Magnosaurus were also bipedal in nature, so the animals travelled on their two feet. In 2010, Roger Benson was the one to declare the Magnosaurus as a valid genus that was approximately 175 million years old.
The Magnosaurus genus is said to belong to the Middle Jurassic period that existed around 163-174 million years ago. Scientists estimated that these theropoda dinosaurs must have belonged to the Bajocian age which lasted between 168-170 million years ago. However, like other dinosaurs, the exact geographical period of the Magnosaurus remains a mystery. It's said that during the Middle Jurassic age, Pangea separated into Laurasia and Gondwana, and the Atlantic Ocean was formed.
The Magnosaurus is said to have last walked on the earth about 168.3 million years ago based on the remains that have been found.
The foremost remains of the Magnosaurus nethercombensis were found in Dorset, England and it's supposed to have been dug up from the Inferior Oolite Group that contains skeletal remains from the Middle Jurassic period.
During the Middle Jurassic Age, northeastern Europe is said to be mostly submerged. And, the Magnosaurus nethercombensis may have had to live on disjointed landmasses that somehow looked like islands.
We are yet to learn about the social structure of dinosaurs. While some believe dinosaurs were complex social beings, others think they had a closer social behavior to the solitary reptiles that we see today.
The Magnosaurs belonged to the Bajocian Middle Jurassic Age and lived around 175 million years ago. The remains were found only in the nineteenth century, and we don't really have any idea about the exact lifespan of any dinosaur. But, scientists roughly estimate that the theropods had a lower lifespan compared to the sauropods.
Like most of the reptiles of today, most Magnosaurus nethercombensis species and other dinosaurs reproduced by laying eggs.
As there was no complete skeleton remains found of the Magnosaur, it's quite hard to assume the appearance. But, like other Therapoda species, this may also have had a long neck with shorter forelimbs, along with longer and stronger hindlimbs for movement. The projected diagrams also tend to suggest a broader hip and a fairly long tail. The reptiles from this species are said to be similar to other species such as the eustreptospondylus, the Dubreuillosaurus, and the Afrovenator, which are also classified as Dinosauria theropoda.
Scientists have been only able to find half or partial remains of the Magnosaurus skeleton, so we don't know the exact number of bones that the reptiles originally had in its body. The most renowned partial skeleton comes from the holotype OUM J12143 and it was classified by Friedrich Von Huene as the Megalosaurus nethercombensis species. It was found in the nineteenth century and contains skeleton remains such as partial dentaries, partial ilium, partial hip bone, and tibia. Von Huene originally thought it to be the remains of a juvenile. But, later Von Huene changed his mind and declared it to be a primitive specimen of the megalosaurus. After studying the specimen BMNH 41352 that has originally described by Richard Lydekker in 1888, Von Huene named it the Megalosaurus lydekkeri.
Even though it's interesting to see the lizard-like dinosaurs produce roar in films, no conclusive evidence of sound behaviors have been found from the fossil remains found in history. Most references from scientists suggest that animals from the clade dinosauria had bird like air sacks that helped it to produce noise for communion. Other than that, these creatures would have also communicated with the help of physical touch.
From the fossil specimen that has been collected from the inferior oolite in England, the Magnosaurus size range was determined to be around 13.1 ft (4 m). However, some scientists believe that the remains actually belong to a juvenile, in which case the mature animals would have been originally much larger body length. Compared to the Magnosaurus species, the average body length range of Megalosauru is said to be around 20 ft (6 m).
We don't have any idea about the speed of the Magnosaurus as only one conclusive fossil specimen of this species has been found. Having said that, theropods are usually said to run at a speed of around 45 mph (70 kph).
Scientists have assigned the estimated weight range of around 386 lb (175 kg) to the species belonging to the Magnosaurus genus. However, some like Roger Benson, believe that it's a wrong assumption, and Roger Benson thinks these species may have weight as much as half a ton, similar to the megalosaurus dinosaurs.
There are no distinct names given to the male and female of this species.
A baby Magnosaurus would have been called a hatchling or juvenile as the dinosaurs as the female dinosaurs are said to lay eggs.
As we have already mentioned, scientists believe that these theropod dinosaurs from this genus were carnivores and relied mainly on animal-based food. Now, we haven't found enough fossil remains to let us know about the exact diet of these animals. But, roughly the estimated diet of a carnivore dinosaur included a meal of other small dinosaurs or other animals that may have existed during the period. Interestingly, contrary to our popular beliefs, most of the dinosaurs were actually herbivores and had flat teeth. Compared to it, these carnivores had sharp teeth to tear through the meat.
Well, we don't really know the level of aggressiveness of a dinosaur, but as a carnivorous species, dinosaurs from the Magnosaurus group must have been quite feisty at catching their prey. However, dinosaurs were never as violent as we have been made to believe by different films and other forms of media.
Friedrich von Huene was the one to extensively study the Magnosaurus genus, and he initially placed a dinosaur by the name of Sarcosaurus andrewsi in the Sarcosaurus group but later renamed Sarcosaurus andrewsi to Magnosaurus woodi. In 1974 the Sarcosaurus andrewsi was again reclassified to be a part of the larger group of megalosaurus woodi. However, some scientists today still believe that the earlier classification of Sarcosaurus woodi is the valid one. Today, this Sarcosaurus woodi or Sarcosaurus species is also renamed the Megalosaurus woodwardi.
Megalosaurus lydekkeri was the second species that Von Huene named, but he preferred to use the classification Magnosaurus lydekkeri at first.
The meaning of Magnosaurus is a giant or large lizard. This is possibly related to the megalosaurus dinosaurs that were first thought to be big lizards by scientists. And, if we think closely, the animals from the clade Dinosauria are actually predecessors to the modern day lizards, reptiles, and birds.
Yes, if you were in front of the Magnosaurus and irritated it, the dinosaur would have probably proceeded to bite you. As a carnivore, the Magnosaurus is said to depend on animal-based food to sustain itself.
Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly dinosaur facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these Incisivosaurus facts, or Austroraptor facts for kids pages.
You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable singing dinosaur coloring pages.