Dacentrurus Armatus
Dacentrurus Armatus
Brian Franczak

DACENTRURUS (dah-sin-TRUE-rus)

Period: Late Jurassic

Order, Suborder, Family: Ornithischia, Thyreophora, Stegosauridae

Location: Europe (England, Western Europe)

Length: 13 feet (4 meters)

Also known as "Omosaurus," Dacentrurus was an armored dinosaur related to Stegosaurus. Dacentrurus had a set of prominent spikes on its tail, a feature for which this dinosaur was named. Its name means "very spiny tail."

Like Stegosaurus, Dacentrurus had plates of bone on its back, but these were more like spikes then triangles. Spikes covered its hips and tail. In this way, Dacentrurus was closely related to the African stegosaur Kentrosaurus. Dacentrurus is not very well known. Dacentrurus was much smaller than Stegosaurus.

As typical for all stegosaurs, Dacentrurus was a plant-eater that fed on low-growing vegetation. Its plates and spines were probably its protection from predators. The real function of its armor, and the armor on all stegosaurs, is often a topic of discussion by paleontologists.