Othnielia (name meaning "Othniel's Dinosaurs") is a genus of ornithopod dinosaur that originated during the Jurassic period in North America. It was named after its original describer Professor Othniel Charles Marsh, an American paleontologist of the 19th century.
Era & DiscoveryEdit
Othnielia lived in North America during the Early to Late Jurassic period from 185–145 million years ago. When is was discovered in 1877, it was named after its original describer Professor Othniel Charles Marsh.
Othnielia was a small dinosaur, only 3–4 feet tall, around 6–7 feet long, and weighing close to 100 lbs. They relied on living in groups, its speed, and staying close to larger animals for protection.
These animals relied on their lightning-fast speed to evade predators. And therefore, they were too fast for larger predators, such as the apex predator Allosaurus, to catch if Othnielia wasn't ambushed. However, smaller predators, like Ornitholestes, potentially had a better chance to catch them in a chase.
Behavior & TraitEdit
Othnielia was sociable and often traveled in flocks with larger animals, like the heavily armored Stegosaurus and even the larger, long-neck Sauropod dinosaurs, for protection.
Othnielia ate low-growing vegetation and also fed on the smashed cycad from a larger herbivore's meal (like a Stegosaurus) and it could also eat a lizard or a centipede on occasion. This meant they stuck very close to the larger herbivores. At least, too close for a predator to get in between and attack.