A large, herbivorous quadruped, Camarasaurus was among the most common of the giant sauropod
dinosaurs found in the Jurassic Period in North America. With a name that means
“chambered lizard,” this dinosaur was named for its partly hollow vertebrae,
and reached up to a massive 60 feet in length.
during the Late Jurassic, some 145 to 150 million years ago, and featured a
long, thick neck which made its head appear small in comparison. It had sturdy,
spoon-shaped teeth, indicating its diet probably differed from other large
herbivores that lived in the same ancient environment, with Camarasaurus most likely feeding on
coarser plant materials.
Real fossils of both an adult and a juvenile Camarasaurus discovered at Dinosaur
National Monument in Utah are on view in the Dinosaurs in Their Time exhibition at Carnegie Museum of Natural
History. The juvenile is represented by a nearly complete skeleton that
includes a full skull and even ear bones. The skeleton is displayed with its
right side still mostly enveloped in sandstone belonging to a rock unit called
the Morrison Formation.
Photo Credit: Joshua Franzos for Carnegie Museum of Natural History