The Strange and Wonderful Dinosaurs of Argentina
Argentina, in South America, is one of the new frontiers of dinosaur research. It is best known as the site of the earliest known dinosaurs the small meat-eaters Eoraptor and Herrerasaurus from 225 million years ago as well as some of the largest and most unusual dinosaurs ever found from the Early Cretaceous (110 million years ago). These include the armored sauropod Saltasaurus (last month's Dinosaur of the Month) and the "horned" predator, Carnotaurus (this month's Dinosaur of the Month).
Why are dinosaurs from South America so different? Until the beginning of the Cretaceous, North and South America were joined by a land bridge that allowed dinosaurs to travel north and south. When this land bridge disappeared during Cretaceous Period, dinosaurs on the now separated continents began to evolve in their own unusual ways. Whenever we find a new dinosaur in South American, we can just bet that it will be a little different than its North American ancestors.
Copyright 1995. Courtesy of The Dinosaur Society, Inc., a not-for-profit corporation supporting dinosaur research and education. For more information concerning Dino Times, the Society's newsletter for kids, call 1-800-346-6366.