Euoplocephalus was a large ankylosaurid that lived at the end of the Cretaceous period, between 83 and 65 million years ago, between the Campanian and the Maastrichtian is now North America.
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Free Euoplocephalus Coloring Pages
Euoplocephalus is one of the largest ankylosaurians, having a size comparable to an elephant and one of the best represented with more than 40 known specimens and 15 complete skulls.
Several ankylosaurid specimens from the Late Cretaceous of North America have been classified in this genus. It led to synonymies with the genera Scolosaurus, Anodontosaurus, and Dyoplosaurus.
Still, studies of these suggest that they are distinct. This dinosaur was one of the enormous armored dinosaurs.
It was as long as an elephant, and heavier than a rhinoceros, measuring approximately 6 meters, with an estimated weight of 2.5 tons, in size surpassed only by Ankylosaurus and Tarchia among the ankylosaurids.
Its body was wide, 2.4 meters from side to side, deep, with short, powerful legs. The hind legs were more significant than the front legs, and all four limbs were sloping with helmet-shaped claws.
The upper body region, including the neck and head, was covered with large fixed bone plates and bony conical horns. The end of the tail had a skinny club.
In most dinosaurs, the caudofemoralis muscle was used to pull the femur backward when walking, but in Euoplocephalus, it was additionally used to wiggle its mallet.
Euoplocephalus had a flat, thick, triangular skull, measuring 40 centimeters long. The nostrils, in some cases, were practically hidden under the massive bone, and over the eyes were very thick bony ridges.
The mouth had a horny beak; the teeth were petite and rough leaf-shaped, with a short neck.
The head and entire body of Euoplocephalus were covered with bands of armor, which allowed for incredible flexibility.
Euoplocephalus was the first ankylosaurid discovered with armored eyelids that could be closed to cover its eyes.
Each piece of armor was composed of a thick oval plate, embedded in the comprehensive surrounding skin, studded with small osteoderms about 10 to 15 cm (4 to 6 inches) long.
In addition, to spines running down its back from the center to the sides. Euoplocephalus had large horns on the back of its head. It also had a bony club at the end of its stiff tail, which it carried suspended.
The tail was muscular. At the tip, it had a club-shaped bony club, massive as a boulder, which it could swing from side to side for defense.
Internally, many bones were fused to provide support for the heavy armor. The dorsal vertebrae fused with the ribs. Also, several spines in front of the hips were merged into a bar.