Apatosaurus Facts For Kids

The Apatosaurus was a huge sauropod that lived 150 million years ago with the predator Allosaurus and other large sauropods ( long necked dinosaurs) It has an interesting history, being confused with both a mosasaurus and a brontosaurus. It is also a commonly found fossil in North America and there is plenty we have learned about this huge long necked dinosaur. We take a look as some apatosaurus facts below.

Apatosaurus averaged between 32,000 and 46,000 lbs in weight and could be over 70 feet in length. it was a plant eating herbivorous dinosaur that lived in the late Jurassic period around 150 million years ago. It shared its environment with the predator Allosaurus and other herbivores like stegosaurus and Dryosaurus.

dinosaur facts for kids

There are 25 Apatosaurus Facts for you below. and also 7 quick facts of you are in a rush. We also have our long neck dinosaur coloring pages and well as the downloadable Apatosaurus facts sheets to print and collect for free. So let’s learn some more facts about this “deceptive lizard! the Apatosaurus.

Apatosaurus Quick Facts

apatosaurus facts
  • This gigantic plant-eating animal measured to be upwards of 70 feet (21 metres) long and 15 feet (4.5 meters) tall, even taller if it raised its head up!
  • Apatosaurus is estimated to be between 16-23 (32-46000 lbs.) tons in weight (some maybe up to 140,000 lbs!)
  • Apatosaurus average length has been calculated to be between 21 – 23 meters (69 – 75 feet). The really REALLY big ones may have been over 100ft long!
  • Current estimates have its running speed to be about 20 kph although these change quite frequently.
  • Apatosaurus mainly ate all low-lying plants we think, and it was a herbivore dinosaur.
  • It is likely that Apatosaurus did live and move in herds for mutual protection, moving from one place to another for food.
  • The word Apatosaurus means as “Deceptive or Unreal Lizard”. It was called deceptive as some of its fossils looked like the water dinosaur Mosasaurus.
  • Apatosaurus despite being a big dinosaur has an easy name to say, just five syllables and is said like this Ah – Pat – Oh- Sore _Rus
1: How big was Apatosaurus?

Apatosaurus is considered as one of the biggest dinosaurs of its time. Although for a sauropod ( those huge long neck dinosaurs) it considered to be a medium sized dinosaur. This gigantic plant-eating animal measured to be above 70 (20 metres) feet long and 15 feet (4.5 meters) tall at the shoulders. Like other sauropods it had a long tail and neck as well as a big body.

2:  How heavy was the Apatosaurus?

Apatosaurus is estimated to be between 16-23 (32-46000 lbs.) tons in weight although some rare apatosaurus have been found that may have been up to 72 tons! Which is a massive 144000 lbs! that is really very big. Even for a sauropod.

3: How long was the Apatosaurus?

Apatosaurus average length has been calculated to be between 21 – 23 meters (69 – 75 feet), including its extended tail and neck. However there are examples that are much bigger up to 30% bigger. Which would but apatosaurus into the 100ft long club!

apatosaurus facts
4: How big was an Apatosaurus head?

Apatosaurus is known for a smaller head. The length of its head is only 2 feet long similar to other sauropods. Although 2 feet for a head seems quite large you have to remember that it was 70ft dinosaur! This means its wasn’t the smartest of dinosaurs.

5: Did Apatosaurus have good eyesight?

Apatosaurus’ eyes were present on the sides of its head and offered a better view of its surrounding. Lots of animals that have to look for predators have their eyes on the side of their head.

apatosaurus fact sheet
6: How Fast Could the Apatosaurus run?

Due to its weight, Apatosaurus preferred moving slow for finding its food. However if needed it is thought that even these huge dinosaurs would have been able to get moving. Current estimates have its running speed to be about 20 kph although these change quite frequently.

7: What kind of teeth did Apatosaurus have?

It had chisel or peg like teeth that were used to tear plants, trees, and low-laying vegetation. Unlike the pachycephalosaurus which has been discovered to have sharp teeth at the front of its mouth, Apatosaurus was purely a herbivore!

8: What Did a Apatosaurus eat?      

Anthropologists assumed that Apatosaurus mainly ate all low-lying plants. However, its lengthy neck might have allowed this sauropod to consume soft leaves on long trees. We are learning more and more about this dinosaur each year. It also ate stones, but not for food. They are called gastroliths and were used to help break up the leaves and bushes they eat.

9: Did Apatosaurus live in herds ?

It is likely that Apatosaurus did live and move in herds for mutual protection, moving from one place to another for food. Footprints have been found over 1 metre wide! it had some big feet to support that big body!

10: What Movies Have Featured a Apatosaurus?

Apatosaurus have been featured in the movie ‘Jurassic Park’. and in Jurassic world 2015, Jurassic world; Fallen Kingdom unfortunately they were attacked and killed by the Indominus Rex. It also will be in the New Jurassic World Dominion movie.

11: When Did the Apatosaurus become Extinct?

Apatosaurus is believed to have lived about 150 million years ago and fossils have not been found younger than that. It is likely to have gone extinct around that time. However we make new fossil finds all the time.

12: What Dinosaur would eat Apatosaurus?

It is thought that Allosaurus would prey on Apatosaurus, though if alone probably just juvenile apatosaurus. However, if Allosaurus did hunt together they may have been able to take on a Full size Apatosaurus. Ceratosaurus also lived at the same time so may have been a predator as well.

13: What museums have an Apatosaurus Fossil?

Apatosaurus skeletons feature in the Tianyu Museum of Nature, American Museum of Natural History (New York), and American Museum in Chicago and the Carnegie museum of Natural history.

14: What does the name Apatosaurus Mean?

The word Apatosaurus means as “Deceptive or Unreal Lizard”. The name was derived from Latin language and Marsh called it deceptive as some of its fossils looked like the Aquatic reptile Mosasaurus and caused some confusion when it was found.

15. What is the difference between Brontosaurus and Apatosaurus?

For a great deal of years, over 100, It was thought that the two dinosaurs, Brontosaurus and Apatosaurus were actually the same dinosaur.

Then a large study was conducted in 2015 looking at 81 different dinosaurs and 477 features, it concluded that actually after all this time the two dinosaurs were in fact different species.

it turns out that Apatosaurus was much bulkier than brontosaurus and it had a lower and thicker neck as well. So after all this time we now have the Brontosaurus back as a dinosaur!

16: How long Did the Apatosaurus live?

Scientists have studied and estimate that Apatosaurus, and other large sauropods could live to over 100 years old. A over simple way of looking at it is that the bigger (and slower) the dinosaur was the longer it could live.

17: Is Apatosaurus the longest dinosaur?

Even though at the large end of the scale for apatosaurus can be over 100 feet, (average was 70ft) There were still both proven and rumored larger sauropds than the Apatosaurus. The argentinosaurus, the patagotitan, and even the brachiosaurus were all bigger. The diplodocus was also longer ( but thinner)

long neck dinosaur coloring pages

Apatosaurus and long neck dinosaur coloring pages

18: Did the Apatosaurus lay eggs?

It is thought that most dinosaurs were Egg laying, Apatosaurus did lay eggs up to a foot long! these have been found in clutches of about 10 eggs. It means that apatosaurus was very small when it was a baby ad must have grown very fast! It is also one of the easier to buy fossils and eggs shells, just pieces though not the whole egg!.

19: When was Apatosaurus discovered?

apatosaurus facts

Apatosaurus was first discovered in 1877 by Arthur lakes and Henry Beckwith in the morrison formation in Colorado. it was later named by the famous paleontologist Othniel Marsh.

20: What dinosaurs did Apatosaurus live with?

Living 150 million years ago means that Apatosaurus lived with other dinosaurs like Allosaurus, Ceratosaurus as we mentioned, but also would have lived with Dryosaurus, Stegosaurus, Camarasaurus and diplodocus.

21: Was Apatosaurus warm or cold blooded?

Apatosaurus was likely to be warm-blooded or at least partly warm-blooded like many other dinosaurs. More like birds than reptiles. They may not have been warm blooded like mammals but certainly they had some degree of warm blood.

22: Where has Apatosaurus been found?

The fossils of Apatosaurus were first found in in North America and Europe. It was found in the Morrison Formation. It is actually the second most common sauropod after camarasaurus that they found there.

23: When did Apatosaurus live?

Apatosaurus lived 150 million years ago. During the Late Jurassic Period. That’s when the fossils currently found have been dated to. There may be some leeway with this as more fossils are discovered.

24: When was Apatosaurus named?

Marsh named the Apatosaurus in 1877 the same year it was found. It means deceptive lizard as he was not sure if it came from a large sauropod or a mosaurusus! It seems a mean name for a great dinosaur.

25. How to pronounce Apatosaurus?

Apatosaurus despite being a big dinosaur has a quite short and easy to say name. it has five syllables and is said like this Ah – Pat – Oh- Sore _Rus

Ah – Pat – Oh – Sore – Rus

apatosaurus facts


Apatosaurus certainly was a giant of its time and would not have worried to much about predatoros, except for Allosaurs and then really only when it was younger. (one reason it grew so fast we think!) So it could spend its days with its head in bushes or maybe up in the trees eating.

It would have needed to eat about 800lbs of food a day to feed itself, so really didn’t have much time for anything else! It is a common dinosaur from the middle of the age of the dinosaurs, the late Jurassic, and is an awe inspiring site in many museums! Hopefully these facts have given you some more information about the awesome Apatosaurus!

Don’t forget to look over the rest of our dinosaur facts pages, our coloring and facts sheets are also free to download. There are answers to common dinosaur questions, and loads of other cool dinosaur activities and resources to look at.






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