List of African dinosaurs

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This is a list of dinosaurs whose remains have been recovered from Africa. Africa has a rich fossil record, but it is patchy and incomplete. It is rich in Triassic and Early Jurassic dinosaurs. African dinosaurs from these time periods include Syntarsus, Dracovenator, Melanorosaurus, Massospondylus, Euskelosaurus, Heterodontosaurus, Abrictosaurus, and Lesothosaurus. In the Middle Jurassic, the sauropods Atlasaurus, Chebsaurus, Jobaria, Spinophorosaurus, and Cetiosaurus flourished, as well as the theropod Afrovenator. The Late Jurassic is well represented in Africa, mainly thanks to the spectacular Tendaguru Formation. Allosaurus, Ceratosaurus, Elaphrosaurus, Giraffatitan, Dicraeosaurus, Janenschia, Tornieria, Tendaguria, Kentrosaurus, and Dryosaurus are among the dinosaurs whose remains have been recovered from Tendaguru. This fauna seems to show strong similarities to that of the Morrison Formation in the United States and the Lourinha Formation in Portugal. For example, Allosaurus, Ceratosaurus, and Dryosaurus have been found in both the Tendaguru and the Morrison. This has important biogeographical implications.

The Early Cretaceous in Africa is known primarily from the northern part of the continent, particularly Niger. Suchomimus, Elrhazosaurus, Spinostropheus, Rebbachisaurus, Nigersaurus, Kryptops, Nqwebasaurus, and Paranthodon are some of the Early Cretaceous dinosaurs known from Africa. The Early Cretaceous was an important time for the dinosaurs of Africa because it was when Africa finally separated from South America, forming the South Atlantic Ocean. This was an important event because now the dinosaurs of Africa started developing endemism because of isolation. The Late Cretaceous of Africa is known mainly from North Africa. During the early part of the Late Cretaceous, North Africa was home to a rich dinosaur fauna. It includes Spinosaurus, Carcharodontosaurus, Rugops, Bahariasaurus, Deltadromeus, Paralititan, Aegyptosaurus, and Ouranosaurus.

Criteria for inclusion[edit]

List of African dinosaurs[edit]

Nomen dubium
Nomen nudum
Name Period Diet[1] Notes
Aardonyx Jurassic herbivore
Abrictosaurus Jurassic herbivore
Aegyptosaurus Cretaceous herbivore
Aetonyx Jurassic herbivore Probably synonymous with Massospondylus
Afrovenator Jurassic carnivore
Algoasaurus Jurassic/Cretaceous herbivore
Allosaurus Jurassic carnivore
Angolatitan Cretaceous herbivore
Antetonitrus Triassic herbivore
Arcusaurus Jurassic herbivore
Atlasaurus Jurassic herbivore
Australodocus Jurassic herbivore
Bahariasaurus Cretaceous carnivore
Baryonyx Cretaceous carnivore
Berberosaurus Jurassic carnivore
Blikanasaurus Triassic herbivore
Carcharodontosaurus Cretaceous carnivore
Ceratosaurus Jurassic carnivore
Cetiosaurus Jurassic herbivore
Chebsaurus Jurassic herbivore
Chenanisaurus Cretaceous carnivore
Coelophysis Jurassic carnivore
Cristatusaurus Cretaceous carnivore
Deltadromeus Cretaceous carnivore
Dicraeosaurus Jurassic herbivore
Dracovenator Jurassic carnivore
Dysalotosaurus Jurassic herbivore
Elaphrosaurus Jurassic carnivore
Elrhazosaurus Cretaceous herbivore
Eocarcharia Cretaceous carnivore
Eocursor Triassic herbivore
Eucnemesaurus Triassic herbivore
Euskelosaurus Triassic herbivore
Fabrosaurus Jurassic herbivore
Geranosaurus Jurassic herbivore
Giraffatitan Jurassic herbivore
Gyposaurus Jurassic herbivore
Heterodontosaurus Jurassic herbivore
Ignavusaurus Jurassic herbivore
Inosaurus Cretaceous carnivore
Janenschia Jurassic herbivore
Jobaria Jurassic herbivore
Kangnasaurus Cretaceous herbivore
Karongasaurus Cretaceous herbivore
Kemkemia Cretaceous carnivore
Kentrosaurus Jurassic herbivore
Kryptops Cretaceous carnivore
Lanasaurus Jurassic herbivore
Lesothosaurus Jurassic herbivore
Lihkoelesauus Triassic (unknown) Possibly not a dinosaur (disputed)
Lurdusaurus Cretaceous herbivore
Lycorhinus Jurassic herbivore
Malawisaurus Cretaceous herbivore
Massospondylus Jurassic herbivore
Megapnosaurus Jurassic carnivore
Melanorosaurus Triassic herbivore
Nigersaurus Cretaceous herbivore
Nqwebasaurus Cretaceous carnivore
Nyasasaurus Triassic herbivore earliest known dinosaur
Ostafrikasaurus Jurassic carnivore
Ouranosaurus Cretaceous herbivore
Paralititan Cretaceous herbivore
Paranthodon Cretaceous herbivore
Pegomastax Jurassic herbivore
Plateosauravus Triassic herbivore
Rebbachisaurus Cretaceous herbivore
Rugops Cretaceous carnivore
Rukwatitan Cretaceous herbivore
Sauroniops Cretaceous carnivore
Sigilmassasaurus Cretaceous carnivore
Spinosaurus Cretaceous carnivore
Spinophorosaurus Jurassic herbivore
Spinostropheus Jurassic carnivore
Stormbergia Jurassic herbivore
Suchomimus Cretaceous carnivore
Tataouinea Cretaceous herbivore
Tazoudasaurus Jurassic herbivore
Tendaguria Jurassic herbivore
Thotobolosaurus Triassic herbivore
Tornieria Jurassic herbivore
Veterupristisaurus Jurassic carnivore
Vulcanodon Jurassic herbivore


This is a timeline of selected dinosaurs from the list above. Time is measured in mya along the x-axis.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Diet is sometimes hard to determine for dinosaurs and should be considered a "best guess"