What Dinosaur Had The Most Teeth

Though the Hollywood movies about dinosaurs may not be the most accurate, due to their popularity, we are seeing a sizable growth in the interest in dinosaurs. One constantly evolving question is how many teeth did dinosaurs have, and the answers we provide might be surprising. So what was the dinosaur with the most teeth?

Although often disputed, the dinosaur with the most teeth is often regarded as the Hardrosaurus with estimates of 960 to 1400 replicable teeth in its mouth. Other dinosaurs with significant numbers of teeth include both the triceratops and the Nigersaurus with over 800 and 500 respectively.

The number of teeth a dinosaur had could differ significantly depending on what they ate, their size and the construction of their mouths. It is also dependant on how complete the discovered fossils are so as to accurately judge which dinosaurs had the most teeth.

It is interesting to see exactly how many each had and what they did with them. Though dinosaurs with many teeth may seem scary, the dinosaurs that did have the most teeth were all actually all herbivores and would have little interest in meat for food.

The Dinosaur With The Most Teeth – Hadrosaurus

The toothiest dinosaur or the dinosaur with the most teeth, according to sciencedaily.com, is the Hadrosaurus which had up to 1400 teeth in its mouth, though this estimate varies somewhat and has been recorded as low as 960 teeth in its mouth with various estimates in-between. The Hadrosaurus, also called the duck-billed dinosaur, lived between 75 and 65 million years ago, according to its fossils. It was discovered in 1838 in New Jersey USA.

it also gave its name to the hadrosaurs which are the genus/family of duckbilled dinosaurs that were hugely common and successful during the age of the dinosaurs.

Though this dinosaur had a huge amount of teeth whichever estimate is the more accurate, , they were not like regular teeth and lined the sides of the mouth and are called cheek teeth.

These teeth mainly got used to chomp down on plant life during the Cretaceous period though there are reports of Crustaceans found in some of the fossilized feces left by this dinosaur. Although this may indicate omnivorous diets it may also be as they grazed on water planets at the edge of inlands seas and lakes.

most teeth Hadrosaurids dinosaur

Why Did They Have So Many Teeth

The Hadrosaurus has many rows of teeth to allow it to chew and digest the plants it enjoys eating more effectively. There is also the belief that this dinosaur needed so many teeth because of the constant wear and tear they would undergo because of regular chewing motions.

These teeth were replaceable, much like sharks today, and as teeth were constantly worn down they would be shed and fall out to replaced by the next row behind. So these dinosaurs were not using all 1000 plus teeth at a time and the vast majority of these were actively growing behind the sets in use.

How Big Was The Mouth

For the most part, the mouths of herbivores are quite small compared to carnivores and omnivores, since they mainly eat plants that can break down into smaller pieces and were not needed to inflict mortal wounds on bushes or trees.

of course being the type species for the whole genus/family of hadrosaurs means that despite being relatively similar in appearance hadrosaurus and hadrosaurs did of course differ in size and appearance.

 Table 1: Dinosaurs with the most teeth.

Dinosaur NameNumber of teeth (estimated)Type of DinosaurWhen lived
Hadrosaurus960-1400Hadrosaur75 to 70 million years ago
Triceratops800 PlusCeratopsian70 to 66 million years ago
Nigersaurus500 plusSauropod115 to 105 Million years ago
Edmontosaurus1000 or soHadrosaur73 to 66 million Years ago.
Stenonychosaurus122Theropod / Troodon /Carnivore76 million years ago.

Description Of The Teeth

Hadrosaurus had hundreds or thousands of teeth in their jaws that formed a “dental battery” with which they would eat their food. The teeth were all similarly shaped, being in the rough shape of a diamond to allow the teeth to tear apart plant matter effectively. These batteries or columns would be replaced over time as teeth were grinded down by constant use.

The Dinosaur With The Second Most Teeth – Triceratops

Very few people haven’t heard of the Triceratops dinosaur before, but surprisingly few people know that the Triceratops dinosaur had around 800 teeth with which they ate their plant-based diet. For this reason, this dinosaur makes the list of the top three dinosaurs with the most teeth.

The Triceratops was a herbivore alive in the Late Cretaceous period around 68 million years ago. Though this dinosaur also had the somewhat scary image of a dinosaur with many teeth, they would likely not even have given humans a second glance when it comes to being a food source.

Horned dinosaur eotriceratops
most teeth dinosaur

Why Did They Have So Many Teeth

The Triceratops, herbivores, had teeth explicitly made to be highly efficient at tearing down plants and plant fibers. They had a lot of teeth that would help them grind whatever they put in their mouths when they chewed.

The Triceratops also ate a wide variety of plants and plant-based foods, which is why the teeth had to be so effective. Depending on the seasons, place, and food in the area, the Triceratops would have to eat very tough plants to survive.

Because of the strenuous task of constant chewing, the teeth of the Triceratops would also periodically get replaced, and the old ones would fall out you can actually buy triceratops teeth fossils on amazon and from other fossil shops.

How Big Was The Mouth

Naturally, there would be a variation of how big the size of a Triceratops’s head and mouth would be, with some skulls reaching upwards of 10 feet in length. Because the Triceratops had a head and skull of that size, it is safe to say that the mouth, the part responsible for keeping the animal fed and alive, would also be quite significant.

Description Of The Teeth

The Triceratops had between 36 and 40 columns, and each column had between 3 and 5 teeth. With this amount of teeth, the Triceratops would have a “dental battery” in their mouth that would help them break apart plant fibers and allow them to eat even tough plant-based foods.

The Dinosaur With The Third Most Teeth – Nigersaurus

The Nigersuarus is another herbivore dinosaur with a whole mouth full of teeth. This dinosaur is considered a “grazer” and is also called “the cow dinosaur” for this reason. This dinosaur likely had around 500 teeth, but they are pretty strangely placed, making this dino look less scary and more laughable.

Why Did They Have So Many Teeth

This Elephant-sized dinosaur had a specific arrangement of teeth that allowed it to eat plants close to the ground. The mouth of this dinosaur also makes it clear that the teeth got primarily used to devour plant-based life close to the ground.

Though the teeth of this dinosaur made it look a little silly, it was the size of the mouth and its position that genuinely made it easier for this dinosaur to feed.

How Big Was The Mouth

The mouth of the Nigersaurus, is quite wide instead of being pointed as most dinosaur heads would be. This is because a pointed mouth and head would be less helpful in reaching ground-level plant life, which is what this dinosaur used to eat.

Description Of The Teeth

Due to the irregular shape of this dinosaur’s head, the teeth got planted along the jaw, which was quite broad. The teeth of this dinosaur, though relatively slender, could also be replaced like other dinosaurs. The replacement of teeth would have been essential, especially for herbivores and it has been estimated that some dinosaurs could replace up to 1800 teeth a year.

What Dinosaur Had The Most Teeth

What was the Carnivore Dinosaur with the most teeth.

This, just like the original question on which dinosaur has the most teeth, is up for debate. However were did hear of a troodon dinosaur called stenonychosaurus that may have had up to 122 sharp teeth in its mouth. While these may have been smaller than other predatory dinosaurs, and certainly less in number than a lot of herbivore dinosaurs it is currently the carnivorous dinosaur with the most teeth that we have heard of.

Troodonwas the smartest dinosaur


Though the image of dinosaurs having many teeth goes hand-in-hand with the way Hollywood has scared us in the past, the dinosaurs with the most teeth would likely not be interested in any meat.

There is a trend under herbivore dinosaurs to have more teeth that allow them to eat tough plant fibers to survive. Even if you expected to find a scary-looking dinosaur on this list, now you know the truth.



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