Fun Timimus Facts For Kids

Moumita Dutta
Feb 29, 2024 By Moumita Dutta
Originally Published on Nov 23, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Fact-checked by Kidadl Team
Timumus facts tell us how the type is named after the son of Patricia Vickers-Rich and Thomas Rich.
?
Age: 3-18
Read time: 7.5 Min

Do you find dinosaurs interesting? If so, then get ready to learn about a new genus of dinosaurs, the Timimus. These animals walked the earth in the southern tip of Australia during the Early Cretaceous period. The genus was defined by Patricia Vickers-Rich and Thomas Rich, and the name means Tim's mimic, which commemorates their son Timothy Rich and the volunteer, John Herman. The femur bones and other material remains from an adult, and a juvenile were found in the Dinosaur Cove East in 1991 that led to the discovery of this new genus of dinosaurs. Though to be an ornithomimid or ostrich dinosaur at first, right now, the Timimus is classified as a theropod. The species is regarded as one of the largest dinosaurs to be found in Victoria, Australia. Hence, do keep reading if you want to know more about the species and genus.

Also, check out our articles on Sinotyrannus and Crichtonsaurus to have a diverse understanding of dinosaurs.

Timimus Interesting Facts

How do you pronounce 'Timimus'?

The pronunciation of the name of this genus is tim-mime-uss.

What type of dinosaur was a Timimus?

The scientific world is still debating about what type of a dinosaur the Timimus could be. However, it is usually regarded as a coelurosaurian theropod, so the genus was pretty close to the birds of today. Initially, the scientists thought the Timimus hermani to be an ornithomimosaur or ostrich dinosaur. However, some believe that the remains are from a juvenile tyrannosauroid.

In which geological period did the Timimus roam the earth?

The Timimus fossil remains suggest that the group belonged to the Early Cretaceous period that took place in Australia. Hence, the species would have existed around 100-145 million years ago on the island continent of today.

When did the Timimus become extinct?

We don't really know much about when the Timimus dinosaurs might have gone extinct. However, one specimen does suggest that the species lived on the earth around 106 million years ago in the Albian faunal stage of the Early Cretaceous period. Because of the major changes in Australia and the very little material evidence found there, paleontologists don't really have a lot of faith in finding any more details about the Timimus.

Where did Timimus live?

The Timimus lived in Australia, and we know it because two femur bone specimens were collected from Dinosaur Cove East, that's situated in Victoria, south of Australia, in the Eumeralla Formation.

What was Timimus' habitat?

The Timimus is said to have lived in the polar forests that had mild summers but harsh and dark winters as it was close to the South Pole. Moreover, in 1996, Anusuya Chinsamy, a paleontologist, studied the bones to reveal that these dinosaurs might have hibernated due to adverse climatic conditions.

Who did Timimus live with?

As not much data has been found about this dinosaur, we can't commend on who it must have lived with. This genus was one of the strangest discoveries because little to no other fossil remains have been found in Southern Australia. But, we can assume that the dinosaur shared its natural home with other species that walked the earth during the Early Cretaceous period of Australia.

How long did a Timimus live?

We don't really know much about the lifespan of this species or, in fact, about most dinosaurs. However, some, like the sauropods, have been said to live for about 70-80 years.

How did they reproduce?

Like most reptiles of today, dinosaurs were oviparous in nature. Females reproduced by laying eggs. We certainly don't know much about the mating rituals or even if the adult dinosaurs took care of the juvenile.

Timimus Fun Facts

What did a Timimus look like?

Even though the finding of the material remains of this species is taken to be a huge thing, scientists have mentioned that it would be hard to trace any other clue to how it really was. The left femur of the adult is said to be long and slender, which was the reason it was first placed with the ornithomimid group. However, as we don't really have any conclusive data about the dinosaur's original group, it's really hard to comment on the appearance. Having said that, some people have imagined it as a tyrannosauroid, which means it had strong hindlimbs along with a long tail and a jaw full of sharp teeth.

Timimus facts help to learn about a new dinosaur species.
*We've been unable to source an image of Timimus and have used an image of Tarbosaurus instead. If you are able to provide us with a royalty-free image of Timimus, we would be happy to credit you. Please contact us at hello@kidadl.com.

How many bones did a Timimus have?

As only a couple of remains have been found in the Dinosaur Cove East, no one can really tell you the number of bones present in the body of a Timimus. The first ones found were two femur bones in 1991, and after studying them, Thomas Rich and Patricia Vickers-Rich assigned it the classification of Timimus hermani. The bones were thought to have come from an adult and a juvenile. These material findings were dated back to the Early Cretaceous period and assigned the holotype NMV P186303 to the left femur of the adult. Some other remains have also been found in the same area, but we don't know much about them.

How did they communicate?

Well, very little is known about the communication in dinosaurs. However, it's believed that most of the species would have communicated via vocal calls. But, unlike most reptiles, dinosaurs possibly lacked a vocal chord and might have had an air sack similar to that of birds. Other than that, physical or tactile communication would have also existed in these animals.

How big was the Timimus?

When we talk about the Timimus size, the fossil remains are said to suggest a size of around 14 ft (4.3 m). However, some do believe that the bones were from a juvenile. So, it didn't get the time to turn into an adult, or it would have grown bigger. However, the first specimen found within the Dinosaur Cove is thought to be that of an adult. Compared to it, a species from the ornithomimid group, the Ornithomimus velox, is said to have a height of around 12 ft (3.8 m).

How fast could a Timimus move?

It would be very hard to assess how fast these dinosaurs would have moved. But, we have very little material to know about it. However, dinosaurs found within the theropod group are usually said to have a speed of around 45 mph (70 kph). That doesn't mean that the dinosaurs always ran fast; they would have behaved like the reptiles of today and mostly adapted a slow gait.

How much did a Timimus weigh?

Even though the genus is hotly debated, after studying the specimen with holotype NMV P186303, scientists described the average weight to be 441 lb (200 kg).

What were the male and female names of the species?

There are no separate names for the male and female of this species.

What would you call a baby Timimus?

Like many other oviparous or egg lying reptiles, the babies of Timimus would have been known as hatchling while a slightly older individual can be referred to as a juvenile.

What did they eat?

When it comes to collecting any specimen, only two femur bones have been recovered for this supposed species. Hence, it's hard to tell what the diet of it might have been. Still, Patricia Vickers-Rich and Thomas Rich, as well as other scientists, suggested it to be a carnivorous dinosaur. So, we may assume that it may have hunted mammals and other reptiles living in its vicinity. It's interesting to know that many of the larger carnivorous dinosaurs also relied on eating smaller dinosaurs.

How aggressive were they?

If these dinosaurs had been carnivorous, then the animals would retain some form of aggression because of the acute prey drive. However, dinosaurs weren't just inherently aggressive animals, as we are led to believe. Moreover, the specimens of this animal from the Early Cretaceous period suggest that it could have been quite small compared to other carnivorous dinosaurs.

Did you know...

Along with the Timimus, other dinosaur genera that were found in Australia, especially during the Early Cretaceous period, include the Atlascopcosaurus, Austrosaurus, Diluvicursor, Muttaburrasaurus, Minmi, and many more.

How did the Timimus get its name?

The naming of the Timimus dinosaurs is actually quite interesting. When taken literally, the name stands for Tim's mimic, which reverberates the name of Timothy Rich, the son of Thomas Rich and Patricia Vickers-Rich, who classified the Timimus genus. On the other hand, the mimic part in Tim's mimic is an ode to the paleontologist Tim Flannery who extensively worked on ornithomimid dinosaurs. Similarly, the specific name of the species Timimus hermani is dedicated to John Herman, a long volunteer in the Dinosaur Cove project.

Were Timimus carnivores or herbivores?

We aren't really sure about the exact diet of the dinosaurs present in this genus. But, it most likely was a carnivorous animal.

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 Graciliraptor facts and Epanterias facts for kids.

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

Image one by Fred Wierum.

Image two by Steveoc 86.

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

Timimus Facts

What Did They Prey On?

N/A

what Type of Animal were they?

Carnivorous

Average Litter Size?

N/A

What Did They Look Like?

N/A

How Much Did They Weigh?

441 lb (200 kg)

Skin Type

N/A

How Long Were They?

14 ft (4.3 m)

How Tall Were They?

N/A

Kingdom

Animalia

Class

N/A

Genus

Timimus

Family

N/A

Scientific Name

Timimus hermani

What Were Their Main Threats?

Natural disasters

What Habitat Did They Live In?

Polar forests

Where Did They Live?

Australia
We Want Your Photos!
We Want Your Photos!

We Want Your Photos!

Do you have a photo you are happy to share that would improve this article?
Email your photos

More for You

See All

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.

Read full bio >