Hanging around

Of course, much of a palaeontologist's work is open to debate and contradiction. Many scientists are not convinced that Abelisaurus is a separate sort of dinosaur at all, but suspect it is actually Carcharodontosaurus (car-CHA-row-DON-toe-SORE-us), the big Moroccan predator. If so, it would mean Carcharodontosaurus was in existence not only later, but also in a different area.


This Cretaceous dinosaur is a classic predator: it has a big head filled with sharp teeth, powerful legs and a big, bulky body. There is also an interesting decorative feature not normally seen on dinosaurs of this type - a frill.



The most striking feature of this powerful dinosaur is a series of spikes running down its spine. The spikes measure around 0.4 metre (1.3 feet) in length, which is big, but probably not long enough to be useful as a form of defence. Instead, they support a frill which runs down the length of the body. But what is the purpose of this crest? If you can answer that, you're going to be a great palaeontologist because nobody is sure at the moment.



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