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Enigmosaurus (Wikimedia Commons)


Enigmosaurus (Greek for "puzzle lizard"); pronounced eh-NIHG-moe-SORE-us


Woodlands of central Asia

Historical Period:

Late Cretaceous (75-65 million years ago)

Size and Weight:

About 20 feet long and 1,000 pounds


Probably omnivorous

Distinguishing Characteristics:

Large claws on hands; strangely shaped pelvis


About Enigmosaurus:

True to its name--Greek for "puzzle lizard"--not much is known about Enigmosaurus, scattered fossils of which have been discovered in Mongolia. This dinosaur was originally classified as a species of Segnosaurus--a bizarre, large-clawed theropod closely related to Therizinosaurus--then, on closer examination, was "promoted" to its own genus. Like other therizinosaurs, Enigmosaurus was characterized by is large claws and bizarre, "Big Bird"-like appearance, but much about its lifestyle remains, well, a puzzle.

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