Fun Nodosaurus Facts For Kids

Nidhi Sahai
Oct 20, 2022 By Nidhi Sahai
Originally Published on Sep 24, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Fact-checked by Kidadl Team
Interesting Nodosaurus facts and features from the Jurassic age in the world you did not know before!
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Age: 3-18
Read time: 8.2 Min

The dinosaur Nodosaurus (Nodosaurus textilis) is a creature that comes under the category of armored dinosaurs and is a genus of Nodosaurid dinosaurs. They originated from North America during the Late Cretaceous period, which is about 95-90 million years ago in the world. The dinosaur genus Nodosaurus was found by the Hammond Foundation during a science mission called the Science Division on Isla Tacano. This is a hefty animal that weighs around 3.0-3.5 tons (2721.5-3175.15 kg) and is approx 18 ft (5.5 m) in length with a very long tail and spikes covering the sides of the body. Even having such a large body and weight, their head is very small comparatively and has a minuscule brain. These lizard-looking herbivore dinosaurs of the middle Jurassic age ate plant material only and used to live in the marsh. There is another dinosaur that often gets related to the Nodosaurs. The Ankylosaurids (family Ankylosauridae) and Nodosaurids (family Nodosauridae) are mostly recognized within Ankylosauria, which are the armored dinosaurs. But the Nodosaurids are considered more primitive than the former because they lived before the Ankylosauria. Nodosaurus vs. Ankylosaurus features are compared a lot by paleontologists. The fossil of the ancestors of the Nodosaurus, which are Nodosaurid, are found in the Middle Jurassic age in the world. But they are known to have survived the end of the Cretaceous.

You can also check out Zigongosaurus and Heterodontosaurus to get more insights about related animals.

Nodosaurus Interesting Facts

How do you pronounce 'Nodosaurus'?

This small-head dinosaur of suborder Ankylosauria is very easy to pronounce. The Nodosaurus pronunciation is 'No-doe-sore-us.' They often get compared to the Ankylosaurids, which can be called their cousins species. Some specimens of the Nodosaur dinosaur are more than 100 million years ago, which states that they used to live around big water bodies.

What type of dinosaur was a Nodosaurus?

The Nodosaurus dinosaur is an armored dinosaur. Their defense reflexes were very good, but neither the immunity nor the lifespan was good. They used to live in very little space as compared to other dinosaurs. This herbivore Jurassic age animal ate plants and grasses.

In which geological period did the Nodosaurus roam the earth?

The North America Nodosaurus used to live in the Late Cretaceous period, which was about 90-95 million years ago. The ancestors of this herbivorous dinosaur were present in the middle Jurassic period. They existed from Cenomanian Age to Maastrichtian Age in history. The fossil and remains of the skeleton mainly got discovered in Alberta in the whole world.

When did the Nodosaurus become extinct?

The dinosaur Nodosaurus (Nodosaurus textilis) of the family Nodosauridae and genus Nodosaurus became extinct around 110 million years ago. It is believed that they became extinct due to natural disasters.

Where did a Nodosaurus live?

Nodosaurus are the dinosaurs that used to inhabit the parts of the United States of America and also some parts of Europe too. They mostly inhabited the areas the warm or tropical areas and sometimes marsh areas too where they can get good rainfall. Kansas, Wyoming, and Alberta (Canada).

What was a Nodosaurus' habitat?

They were herbivores and therefore used to prefer to live in the regions of grasses and terrestrial habitats. These dinosaurs used to inhabit those areas where they can have good availability of water and green foliage. The warm and tropical areas with moderate rainfall, marshlands and tropical storms were their habitats. They also used to live in those areas which had occasional forest fires.

Who did a Nodosaurus live with?

These creatures were not very socially active and most preferred the environment of solitude. The other genus of dinosaurs, Sauropelta, were considered to be one of the most hostile dinosaurs around. Nodosaurus can live alone and also in a small group of not more than three to four, but sometimes seven too. They used to form alliances with the Ankylosaurus, Polacanthus, and Crichtonsaurus to display their strong armored feature to the bigger dinosaurs.

How long did a Nodosaurus live?

The exact time period of this dinosaur is not known yet as they went extinct a long time ago but they lived in the late Cretaceous period, which is the younger of two epochs.

How did they reproduce?

There is no absolute information available on their reproduction as of now. Little is known that they laid eggs. Whether they used to provide parental care to the babies or not is still not known, as many dinosaurs did not provide parental assistance to their babies after hatching like Zigongosaurs.

Nodosaurus Fun Facts

What did a Nodosaurus look like?

This dinosaur the phylum Chordata, clade Dinosauria, Order Ornithischia, Suborder Ankylosauria, and Subfamily Nodosaurina, is a 13.12-19.68 ft (4-6 m) long ornithischian dinosaur. They have very interesting features as compared to many dinosaurs discovered in history. They had bony plates on top of its body covering the whole area of the top and the spikes covering the sides of the body. These plates were arranged in bands over the ribs and has wide plates too. These wide plates are covered in bony nodules which are regularly arranged. They had four very short legs and five-toed feet with a long stiff, short neck and a clubless tail. The head was both small and narrow and had a pointed snout with powerful jaws and small teeth. This ensures the fact that these animals used to feed on just plant material and easily chewable foliage because their small teeth were unable to chew flesh or meat. This dinosaur was a member of the Ankylosaur family and weighed three tonnes. They lived in the middle Jurassic age and are considered as one of the founders of the armored dynasty of the dinosaurs which later got split into two different families.

These lizard-like looking dinosaurs used to protect themselves by their distinctive back and the spikes on them from the predators.

How many bones did a Nodosaurus have?

The exact number of bones in the Nodosaurus skeleton is not known yet. But their cousin species of Ankylosaurids dinosaurs had a clublike tail made of seven bones fused together into a hard and heavy mass. The Ankylosaurids existed for a comparatively larger duration of time than these dinosaurs and hence the Nodosaurus are considered as primitive.

How did they communicate?

There is not much information available on the communication ways of this dinosaur. But this dinosaur used to form small groups with other dinosaurs of similar armor features like Ankylosaurus, Polacanthus, and Crichtonsaurus to defend their territory and display their strength. Rest dinosaurs used to communicate by various actions such as rubbing their scales together, clap jaws and grind their mandibles against their upper jaws to show anger or dominance.

How big was a Nodosaurus?

The length of the Nodosaurus of clade Dinosauria was about 13.12-19.68 ft (4-6 m). They were approx double the length of the Amazonian manatee. The largest herbivore dinosaur the "Titanosaur" Argentinosaurus huinculensis" was about 118 ft (36 m) in lenght.

How fast could a Nodosaurus move?

They were heavyweight dinosaurs and because of that, their running speed was very less as compared to other lightweight dinosaurs. They are also called lizard-looking dinosaurs like the relative species of the Ankylosaurids and also resembles the saltwater crocodile in terms of spikes, but the latter has smaller. The bone count of the discovered skeleton is not known.

How much did a Nodosaurus weigh?

The weight of the Nodosaurus was about 3.0-3.5 tons (2721.5-3175.15 kg) and they are 30 times heavier than the dusky dolphins. Because of their heavyweight and short legs they weren't able to move very fast or run in the presence of the danger of any predators and hence used to use their armored backs for defense.

What were the male and female names of the species?

There are no specific names for the male and the female of this species of the North America Nodosaurus (Nodosaurus textilis).

What would you call a baby Nodosaurus?

The baby of this herbivore dinosaur does not have any particular name to get called by. They were called 'baby Nodosaurus.' They used to lay eggs, and there is no proper record of whether they used to give parental care to the babies after hatching or not.

What did they eat?

These animals were herbivores and so mainly, the diet was plant material. They ate grasses, leaves, shrubs, herbs, vegetable leaves, and flowers in their diet.

How aggressive were they?

There is not much information available about their aggressive behavior but because of the osteoderms on their back are rectangular and are arranged in bands running down on both sides, they show their defense. But when a larger predator like a tyrannosaur flips this dinosaur, then they will become defenseless.

Did you know...

To protect themselves from the predators, these Nodosaurs dinosaurs used to completely rely on the thick bony plates coat and knobs that used to cover their back. The legs on the front were very small as compared to their large size.

Nodosaurids did not have the tail club of the ankylosaurids and the skulls were also very not so small and had a protective plates layer. They are also not considered as intelligent species of dinosaurs and are the best-preserved dinosaurs ever found.

How did the Nodosaurus die?

The specimen of the Nodosaur dinosaur, which was found in Alberta, Canada, gives the idea that these animals used to live near small or medium-sized water bodies. The specimen is the oldest recorded and scientists are of the opinion that these dinosaurs must have died near the water either by the predator animals like theropods or sauropods or by the natural calamities like floods and tsunamis.

Who discovered the Nodosaurus?

The discovery of these dinosaurs took place in the countries of the United States of America and Canada. Even some of the population also got recorded in Europe but on a comparatively minor scale than that of the USA and Canada. Kansas, Wyoming, and Alberta are some regions where the Nodosaurus fossil of this animal was found the most by paleontologists.

One of the first few Nodosaurus fossils of these armored dinosaurs was found in North America by the Hammond Foundation when they were finishing up their Science Division Mission on Isla Tacano.

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 Chasmosaurus facts and Diabloceratops facts pages.

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

Nodosaurus Facts

What Did They Prey On?

Plants

what Type of Animal were they?

Herbivore

Average Litter Size?

4

What Did They Look Like?

Soft Brown Colour

How Much Did They Weigh?

3.0-3.5 tons (2721.5-3175.15 kg)

Skin Type

Scales

How Long Were They?

13.12-19.68 ft (4-6 m)

How Tall Were They?

9.84 ft (3 m)

Kingdom

Animalia

Class

Reptilia

Genus

Nodosaurus

Family

Nodosauridae

Scientific Name

Nodosaurus textilis

What Were Their Main Threats?

Natural disasters

What Habitat Did They Live In?

Forest

Where Did They Live?

North America and Alberta (Canada)
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Written by Nidhi Sahai

Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Mass Communication

Nidhi Sahai picture

Nidhi SahaiBachelor of Arts in Journalism and Mass Communication

Dedicated and experienced, Nidhi is a professional content writer with a strong reputation for delivering high-quality work. She has contributed her expertise to esteemed organizations, including Network 18 Media and Investment Ltd. Driven by her insatiable curiosity and love for journalism and mass communication, Nidhi pursued a Bachelor of Arts degree from Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, graduating with distinction in 2021. During her college years, she discovered her passion for Video Journalism, showcasing her skills as a videographer for her institution. Nidhi's commitment to making a positive impact extends beyond her professional pursuits. Actively engaging in volunteer work, she has contributed to various events and initiatives throughout her academic career.

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