Fun Trachodon Facts For Kids

Moumita Dutta
Feb 29, 2024 By Moumita Dutta
Originally Published on Nov 17, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Fact-checked by Kidadl Team
Know all amazing facts about the Trachodon dinosaur.
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Age: 3-18
Read time: 8.2 Min

The Trachodon is a genus of Upper Cretaceous hadrosaurid dinosaurs, the species of which were famous as duck-billed dinosaurs. It was a dubious genus of the Late cretaceous due to lack of fossil material and therefore was classified as Nomen dubium. The name Trachodon means rough tooth. The phylogeny of the Trachodon dinosaur has been ignored by modern-day paleontologists on a large scale, but they were an important and unique species of the past with unusual characteristics. There are many known species under Trachodon, but Trachodon mirabilis is considered to be the type species.

They were a group of herbivores that widely inhabited the North American region. The most noteworthy characteristic of these ornithopods is their ability to chew or bring with their teeth. Based on the dental structure and the chewing habits of the ornithopods, it can be concluded that they probably have been the ancestors of modern-day herbivorous mammals like cows. The Trachodon shows all these features; hence they are regarded as an ornithopod. To know more about these dinosaurs, keep on reading these facts.

For similar content like Trachodon dinosaur facts, check out Orolotitan facts and Aralosaurus facts too.

Trachodon Interesting Facts

How do you pronounce 'Trachodon'?

The name Trachodon is pronounced as track-oh-don. There are many known species under the Trachodon genus, but Trachodon mirabilis is considered to be the type species.

What type of dinosaur was a Trachodon?

A Trachodon is a type of dinosaur that belongs to the Ornithopoda clade. It is a type of hadrosaurid ornithopod that lived during the Late Cretaceous. Their fossils were first described by Joseph Leidy, and their features suggested that they are one of the herbivore ornithopods. These ornithopods are a group of ornithischian dinosaurs that became widespread during the Cretaceous period.

Apart from Ornithopods, they are classified as Hadrosaurus based on their duck-billed mouth structure. These dinosaurs had an unusual duck-billed shape mouth, a characteristic feature of the Hadrosaurid. The bones in their snout were flat, which gave it a duckbill-like structure. Due to the double rooted teeth of the animal, they were also related to the Lambeosaurines, but they were not biologically related to them. They were actually the descendants of Iguanodontian dinosaurs of the Late Cretaceous, which can be concluded from the similarities in their body structure. The species of Trachodon were regarded as Lambeosaurines Hadrosaurids based on their dental biology. They were one of the powerful dinosaurs of the geological epoch.

In which geological period did Trachodon roam the earth?

The Trachodon is a genus of ornithopod dinosaurs that were found during the geological epoch of the Late Cretaceous. The geological epoch of the Cretaceous period is divided into two stages, the early and the Late Cretaceous. The latter is again subdivided into six stages. The Trachodon emerged during the later stage of the upper Cretaceous. It is assumed that the species evolved around 77 million years ago on the earth when the Campanian stage was still on the go. They lived for more than four million years and went extinct around 73 million years ago. They were not found in the stages beyond the Campanian stage of the Cretaceous period.

When did the Trachodon become extinct?

The Trachodon is a genus of dinosaurs that came into existence during the Campanian stage of the Cretaceous period. The Trachodon history dates back to the middle part of the Campanian stage. The Campanian stage started 83 million years ago, and the genus emerged around 77 million years ago. They existed for four million years on earth, and around 73 million years ago, the Trachodian finally became extinct from earth. They could not access the last stage of the Mesozoic era, the Maastrichtian stage, and went extinct before this transition. The fossil of the type species of the Trachodon genus was discovered by Joseph Leidy in the 19th century. In 1864 their fossil material was discovered for the first time and was described in 1908.

Where did Trachodon live?

The Trachodon is a type of herbivore dinosaur whose fossils were discovered from the Judith River Formation of Montana. They belonged to the United States of North America. The Trachodon fossil material was discovered for the first time in the middle of the 19th century. In 1856, an American geologist named Joseph Mellick Leidy spotted the fragmentary remains of a dinosaur from the Judith River Formation in the United States.

What was the Trachodon's habitat?

Trachodon preferred to live in Terrestrial habitats ranging from upland to lowland forests.

Who did Trachodon live with?

It is believed that the animals of the Trachodon genus lived in groups. Several bone beds of Hadrosaurids have been identified in different parts of their range. The bone beds that were identified consisted of mainly the skeleton juvenile individuals, so it is also possible that juveniles and adults formed different herding groups.

How long did a Trachodon live?

The Trachodon emerged during the middle part of the Campanian stage. They lasted on earth for the span of 73-77 million years ago on earth. This left them with four million years on earth, and after that, the entire genus disappeared.

How did they reproduce?

Being a part of the Hadrosauridae, Trachodons reproduced in a method similar to the other members of the clade. Like all other species, they also reproduced by laying eggs. The total number of eggs that were laid by the animal in a single clutch is unknown. By studying their fossil, researchers got access to some information regarding the juveniles and eggs. Sub centimeter records of fragmentary eggshells with pebble-like shells have been discovered. This shell was noted to be a Hadrosaur eggshell. This type of eggshell was reported from the Judith River Formation of Montana as well as from Alberta.

The shells of invertebrates like snails and clams released enough calcium carbonate to protect the eggshells from decaying thereby, giving access to the fossilization process. Apart from preserved eggshells, remains of juvenile Hadrosaurids are also common. Several bonebeds were noted in their range, which consisted of juvenile skeletons. Many tiny Hadrosaur footprints collected from a site are also preserved.

Trachodon Fun Facts

What did Trachodon look like?

The Trachodon does not have a proper physical description due to the lack of remains. They were considered to be large in size in comparison to other similar species. They had a long tail, and the Trachodon head was in the shape of a duck's bill. They had short limbs and hands.

Hayden was the first one to name the Trachodon species.

How many bones did a Trachodon have?

The total number of bones present in the body of this dubious genus is unknown. Currently, they are only known from the seven teeth that have been excavated.

How did they communicate?

Similar to other species, the genus Trachodon probably communicated through vocalization and visualization.

How big was the Trachodon?

The length of a Trachodon is 32 ft (10 m), and its height is 14 ft (4.2 m). They are two times smaller than the Dinheirosaurus.

How fast could a Trachodon move?

They were either bipedal or quadrupedal, but the speed at which a Trachodon moved has not been estimated.

How much did a Trachodon weigh?

The weight of a Trachodon could not be accurately determined.

What were the male and female names of the species?

The male and female species do not have any specific names. Both are called Trachodon.

What would you call a baby Trachodon?

A baby dinosaur is referred to as a neonate.

What did they eat?

The Trachodon is herbivorous in nature. They ate plant matters.

How aggressive were they?

Since these dinosaurs were herbivores in nature, they were considered to be less aggressive than the flesh-eaters.

Did you know...

The holotype of the Trachodon is described as a typical holotype for all the members of the family Hadrosaurid. Scientists even tried to assign all Hadrosaurid dinosaurs under the genus Trachodon, leaving only one species. However, as new holotypes began to be discovered from other parts of North America like Alberta, Rocky Mountain, and Saskatchewan, researchers gradually started to describe other genera beyond Trachodon.

Why are they called Trachodon?

The Trachodon fragments were collected from the site and described by an American geologist named Ferdinand Vandeveer Hayden. These dinosaurs were named Palaeoscincus, Deinodon, Troodon, and Trachodon. The generic name of the Trachodon is a derivation from a combination of two Greek terms, trakhys and odon. Trakhys in English translates to rough, and odon means tooth. When these two Greek terms are combined, it means rough tooth. Therefore Trachodon is a synonym for the rough tooth. It refers to the granulated and rough surface in the inner portion of one of the teeth. The name of the type species of the trachodon is Trachodon mirabilis. Mirabilis is actually a Latin term; it means marvelous in Latin.

During the period of the Bone Wars, characterized by enhanced fossil hunting completion and revolutionary increase in the number of excavated fossils, the taxonomical features of the Trachodon were confused with the features of their related species. The typical features of the clade are more or less covered by their fossil collection except for their teeth- type.

How strong were Trachodon teeth?

The teeth of a Trachodon were not similar to the dental formation of other species of their clade. The fossil material of the Trachodon mirabilis that was discovered by Joseph Leidy from the site consisted of seven teeth. One tooth out of the seven was identified to be double rooted. Therefore, it was suggested that Trachodon is a double-rooted dinosaur. By comparing them to the tooth remains of Hadrosaurus, it was suggested that the dental biology of the Trachodon differed completely from the other hadrosaurids. Their teeth had roughened margins from which they get their name. The rough teeth refer to the literal meaning of the name. Paleontologists supported the theory that Trachodon did not use their teeth; that's why they were so rough. In 1936, a paleontologist named Charles Sternberg concluded that the teeth of Trachodon resembled those of lambeosaurines rather than Hadrosaurid based on their double rooted nature. The distinctive double root system of their teeth makes the dental formation of the dinosaurs very strong.

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 Abrosaurus facts, or Huaxiaosaurus facts for kids.

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

Trachodon Facts

What Did They Prey On?

N/A

what Type of Animal were they?

Herbivore

Average Litter Size?

Not estimated

What Did They Look Like?

N/A

How Much Did They Weigh?

Not estimated

Skin Type

Bumpy skin

How Long Were They?

32 ft (10 m)

How Tall Were They?

14 ft (4.2 m)

Kingdom

Animalia

Class

Reptilia

Genus

Trachodon

Family

Hadrosauridae

Scientific Name

Trachodon mirabilis

What Were Their Main Threats?

Natural disasters

What Habitat Did They Live In?

Terrestrial habitat

Where Did They Live?

Montana
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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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