|“||This is an Argentinosaurus, the largest land animal that ever lived. Look at it.||„|
| — Allen Johnson, about Argentinosaurus|
in Land of Giants
Argentinosaurus (name meaning "Argentina Lizard") is a genus of huge titanosaurian sauropod dinosaur that originated during the Early to Middle Cretaceous period in South America. At 35 meters long and weighing a staggering 75–100 tons, Argentinosaurus was also the largest and most physically imposing sauropod.
Era & DiscoveryEdit
Argentinosaurus roamed the plains of South America during the Early to Middle Cretaceous period, from 120–93 million years ago. Hence its named, it was discovered in Argentina, South America and it roamed the plains of South America with other creatures and dinosaurs: such as many pterosaurs and the South American Iguanodon. Argentinosaurus was also preyed upon by the giant Giganotosaurus and the huge crocodilian Sarcosuchus (although, they primarily fed on smaller and younger Argentinosaurus).
The first fossils identified as Argentinosaurus were found in 1987 by a rancher in Argentina, who mistook the leg for a giant piece of petrified wood.
As, without a doubt, one of the largest, if not, the largest land animal that ever walked Planet Earth, Argentinosaurus grew to a staggering 35 feet (10 m) tall at the hips, measured over 100 feet (30 m) in length, and weighed as heavy as 92 tons (184,000 lbs.), the weight of 30 African elephants (give or take), making it not only the largest sauropod dinosaur, but Argentinosaurus was the largest species of dinosaurs in general ever found and the largest and heaviest creature over to walk on land. This great size ensured that mature Argentinosaurs had no predators, except for some certain pack-hunting theropods, such as Giganotosaurus.
Behavior & TraitsEdit
Like other Sauropods and many other, if not, all herbivorous dinosaurs, Argentinosaurus was a dinosaur that traveled in herds of dozens individuals. Juveniles however most likely travelled in separate herds from the adults. Every year during the breeding season, herds of Argentinosaurus visited lakes to lay their eggs. The shores on the edge of the lake was the perfect nursery for them.
Their eggs could give you a good idea of what these huge animals hatched out from. Quite small beginnings, but the full egg itself was about the size of a football. Females came to lakes year after year because it was a perfect place for them to lay their eggs.
Even at three or four years of age, young Argentinosaurus stayed around the nesting area, probably because there must have been good food for them and they were also too young to travel with herds. And if they survived, they grew-up to be as large as an adult, growing some 60 times in weight. In its own right, Argentinosaurus was a herbivore that fed in the treetops with its great size and long neck that also allowed it to avoid competition with smaller herbivores, such as Macrogryphosaurus.