Name: Liliensternus liliensterni
Name Meaning: Named for Hugo Rühle von Lilienstern, the father of German paleontology.
First Described: 1934
Described By: Huene
Classification: Dinosauria, Saurischia, Theropoda, Coelophysoidea
Liliensternus was a very large Coelophysoid theropod, about five meters long. It was the largest theropod known from the period in Europe, where it was found. Specifically, it was discovered in Trossingen Formation in Germany. It lived around 210 million years ago, in Carninan to Norian stages of the Late Triassic period. Due to its size, it probably preyed on many of the larger prosauropods of the age, such as Plateosaurus. However, it was still smaller than Plateosaurus, and probably hunted in packs. The fourth and fifth fingers on its hands are greatly reduced, showing the general trend of predatory dinosaurs towards three-fingered hands. It had a very long neck and tail, and a small crest, like Megapnosaurus, and much like a smaller version of Dilophosaurus’. Its crest would probably have been used in signaling and communication with other dinosaurs. It was very lightly built, and was probably a good sprinter.
Weishampel, D. B. (2007). The Dinosauria (2nd ed.). Berkeley, Calif.: University of California Press.
Dixon, D. (2007). The Complete Book of Dinosaurs. London, England: Anness Publishing.
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