Fun Sinocalliopteryx Facts For Kids

Rhea Nischal
Oct 20, 2022 By Rhea Nischal
Originally Published on Sep 29, 2021
Edited by Jacob Fitzbright
Fact-checked by Gowri Rao
Discover fun Sinocalliopteryx facts about its fossil remains, teeth, tail, natural history, time period, and more!
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Age: 3-18
Read time: 6.1 Min

Sinocalliopteryx is a genus consisting of a single compsognathid dinosaur species, Sinocalliopteryx gigas‭. This genus was named in 2007 by Ji, ‬Q., S., Ji, Lu J., C, and Yuan and means ‬'giant Chinese beautiful feather'‭.

It belongs to the clades ‬Dinosauria,‭ ‬Saurischia,‭ ‬and Theropoda, and the family ‬Compsognathidae.

It has been estimated by paleontologists that it existed from 129.4 million years ago to the Aptian Age of the Early Cretaceous. The fossil remains of this dinosaur were found in the ‬Yixian Formation, Liaoning Province, China, and consist of a complete skeleton with filamentous structures (protofeathers).

It has been estimated from the specimen that this dinosaur had a length of 7.5 ft (2.3 m) and a weight of 44 lb (20 kg). It is the largest known dinosaur of the group of compsognathids.

It possessed 3.9 in (10 cm) long protofeather on its body along with feathers on its foot as well.

It was initially assumed that these feathers evolved for insulation purposes, but other Yukin Formation's dinosaurs like Sinornithosaurus (bird-like dinosaur) and Sinosauropteryx possessed patterns, with the Sinosauropteryxs coloration allowing it to camouflage itself on the floor of the forest. It is possible that the feathers were used in camouflaging!

There were also chevrons and spines in Sinocalliopteryx's tail that were inclined to the back strongly. This dinosaur was a carnivore as a partial leg of Sinornithosaurus (a bird-like dinosaur) was found in its ribs.

There were also four large stones present in its abdominal cavity (stomach) that are believed to be gastroliths.

Had fun learning these fun facts? Keep reading to discover thrilling facts related to Sinocalliopteryx size comparison, natural history, fossil remains, and more!

If you enjoyed reading our fun Sinocalliopteryx facts, you must check out our Dryosaurus and Gasparinisaura interesting facts as well! 

Sinocalliopteryx Interesting Facts

How do you pronounce 'Sinocalliopteryx '?

Sinocallioptery can be pronounced as 'si-no-cal-ee-op-ter-ix.

What type of dinosaur was a Sinocalliopteryx?

The genus Sinocalliopteryx (meaning 'Chinese beautiful feather') consists of a compsognathid dinosaur species. It belongs to the clades Dinosauria, Saurischia, and Theropoda.

In which geological period did the Sinocalliopteryx roam the Earth?

It was excavated from the Yixian Formation' Early Cretaceous suggesting that it existed from 129.4 million years ago to the Aptian Age of the Early Cretaceous

When did the Sinocalliopteryx become extinct?

It has been estimated that these dinosaurs went extinct after the Aptian Age.

Where did a Sinocalliopteryx live?

It is believed that this dinosaur inhabited Asia only as its fossil remains have only been found in the Jianshangou Beds of the ‬Yixian Formation, Liaoning Province, China.

What was a Sinocalliopteryx's habitat?

This dinosaur is believed to have been arboreal, inhabiting trees mainly. This preference of habitat would have aided it in catching flying prey easily.

Who did a Sinocalliopteryx live with?

The Sinocalliopteryx is known to have co-existed on Earth with dinosaurs like Nedoceratops, Australovenator, and Gobivenator during the Cretaceous period.

How long did a Sinocalliopteryx live?

The lifespan of these dinosaurs has not yet been evaluated by paleontologists. However, we do know it has been estimated that compsognathids had short lives.

How did they reproduce?

These dinosaurs are believed to have reproduced by laying eggs. They are also believed to have reproduced rapidly.

Sinocalliopteryx Fun Facts

What did a Sinocalliopteryx look like?

The Sinocalliopteryx had protofeathers and foot feathers present on its body!
We've been unable to source an image of Sinocalliopteryx and have used an image of Sinosauropteryx instead. If you are able to provide us with a royalty-free image of Sinocalliopteryx, we would be happy to credit you. Please contact us at hello@kidadl.com

The Sinocalliopteryx is known from a specimen of a complete skeleton. It has been estimated from the specimen that this dinosaur had a length of 7.5 ft (2.3 m).

This dinosaur possessed 3.9 in (10 cm) long protofeathers on its body. It was initially believed that these feathers evolved for insulation purposes, but other Yukin Formation's dinosaurs like Sinornithosaurus (bird-like dinosaur) and Sinosauropteryx possessed patterns, with the Sinosauropteryxs coloration allowing it to camouflage itself on the floor of the forest.

It is also believed that the feathers helped in hiding from larger predators like the Sinocalliopteryx. There were chevrons and spines in the tail that were inclined to the back strongly.

It had six large teeth present in its jaw.

This dinosaur also possessed foot feathers which are believed to have developed in Microraptors. These foot feathers suggest that foot feathers originated earlier than the maniraptoran dinosaurs.

There were also four stones found in the Sinocalliopteryx's abdominal cavity (stomach) that are believed to be gastroliths. The Sinocalliopteryx can be differentiated from the Huaxiagnathus by the presence of long hands that were longer than most compsognathids.

How many bones did a have?

The specimen of this dinosaur consisted of a tail, partial skull, ribcage, feet, four gastrolith-like stones in the stomach, and hands. However, the total number of bones is not known.

How did they communicate?

It is not known how these dinosaurs communicated with each other due to a lack of research.

How big was a Sinocalliopteryx?

Sinocalliopteryx is a large compsognathid that measured about 7.7 ft (2.3 m) in total body length. It is the largest known genus of compsognathids. It is estimated to be twice the size of the Pisanosaurus!

How fast could a Sinocalliopteryx move?

The exact speed of this bipedal predator is not known. However, it is estimated by scientists that they were fast-moving dinosaurs.

How much did a Sinocalliopteryx weigh?

The weight of these dinosaurs was estimated to be 44 lb (20 kg) in 2010 by Gregory S. Paul.

What were the male and female names of the species?

There are no sex-specific names for this species.

What would you call a baby Sinocalliopteryx?

The babyof this species can be referred to as a hatchling or juvenile.

What did they eat?

Sinocalliopteryx is the largest in the group comprising compsognathids, even being large in size as compared to the Huaxiagnathus. It is believed that due to its size, it did not prefer feeding upon smaller animals.

It is assumed that these dinosaurs hunted on other animals, and did not scavenge. A partial leg bone of Sinornithosaurus (a bird-like dinosaur) was found in its gut.

This leg was found between the ribs of the specimen discovered. There were also four stones found in its abdominal cavity (stomach) that are believed to be gastroliths.

Gastroliths are usually found in herbivores but can be sometimes seen in carnivores as well. The gastroliths of carnivores are usually larger than the ones that are swallowed by herbivores.

They help in breaking down the bones that the carnivores swallow. Interestingly, Compsognathus, which were smaller compsognathids, have been discovered with small animals like lizards present in their abdomen, consumed wholly without chewing.

How aggressive were they?

These dinosaurs were medium-sized and are believed to have been quite powerful and aggressive due to their dietary requirements and body structure.

Did you know...

The clade Theropoda comprises mighty predators that existed on the planet 70-112 million years ago during the Late Cretaceous period. These dinosaurs were lethal predators that were bipedal and possessed sharp claws and powerful jaws!

Eodromaeus is believed to be the earliest theropod that existed 230 million years ago! Its fossil remains were discovered in northwestern Argentina and suggest that it attained a length of about 4 ft (1.2 m)!

What do you mean by Sinocalliopteryx?

This dinosaur was named in 2007 by Ji, ‬Q., S., Ji, Lu J., C, and Yuan. The generic name means ‬'giant Chinese beautiful feather‭' and the specific name 'gigas' of the type species means giant.

Was Sinocalliopteryx a theropod?

Yes, this dinosaur was a compsognathid theropod that belonged to the clade Theropoda as it had filamentous structures (protofeathers and foot feathers) that were discovered along with many other Yixin formation's theropods.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly dinosaur facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other creatures from our Velocipesfacts and Melanorosaurus interestingfacts for kids.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable Sinocalliopteryx coloring pages.

The main image is owned by Nobu Tamura.

The second image is owned by Nobu Tamura.

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Written by Rhea Nischal

Bachelor of Business Administration specializing in Management

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Rhea NischalBachelor of Business Administration specializing in Management

A background in Business Administration and Management from MCM DAV College, Rhea has led her to work for her father's global business. However, her passion for content production, where she manages operations to ensure all processes run smoothly. Outside of work, she enjoys playing the piano and spending time with her one-year-old nephew.

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Fact-checked by Gowri Rao

Bachelor of Arts specializing in Economics

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Gowri RaoBachelor of Arts specializing in Economics

With a bachelor's degree in Economics from Krea University, Gowri is a highly skilled data analyst and an expert in regression and causation modeling. Her interests in economic trends, finance, and investment research complement her professional expertise. In addition to her professional pursuits, Gowri enjoys swimming, running, and playing the drums, and she is also a talented tutor.

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