Saltasaurus Sauropod Dinosaur Egg, 7 inches. Location: Patagonia, Argentina, South America Age: Cretaceous
As titanosaurs go, the South American Saltasaurus was the runt of the litter--this dinosaur only weighed about 10 tons, compared to 50 or 100 tons for more famous sauropod cousins like Diplodocus or Argentinosaurus. (The titanosaurs were offshoots of the classic sauropods of the late Jurassic period, and are technically included under the sauropod umbrella.) This weight difference can be explained by Saltosaurus' relatively streamlined build compared to its huge, squat cousins.
However, what really set Saltasaurus apart from the pack was the bony armor lining its back--an adaptation that caused paleontologists to initially mistake this dinosaur's remains for those of Ankylosaurus. Clearly, this slim herbivore attracted the notice of the numerous tyrannosaurs and raptors of the late Cretaceous period, and its back plates evolved as a much-needed form of defense.
See item 193 for authentic (real) Saltasaurus dinosaur eggshell.
See item 1325 for model of Saltasaurus.
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