What Dinosaur Has 500 Teeth
6 mins read

What Dinosaur Has 500 Teeth

What dinosaur has 500 teeth? – Answer is NIGERSAURUS.

Unfortunately, Nigersaurus has recently been turned into a social media joke due to its name primarily on Reddit. It is pronounced“NYE-jer-SORE-us.” Moreover, the unusual fact is that this dinosaur had over 500 teeth.

Let’s explore more about this creature.

How did Nigersaurus get its name?

The hilltop of the Sahara Desert gave rise to a new bizarre dinosaur. Similar to an elephant-sized creature with a skull and jaws which scientists have ever seen. That Dinosaur is called a Nigersaurus.

Its nickname was the “Mesozoic Cow,” as several paleontologists believe their behavior was the same as that of modern cows.

Nigersaurus derived from “Niger” – the nation where it was discovered and the Greek “sauros,” meaning Lizard, was one of the oldest sauropodomorph herbivore dinosaurs ever discovered.

It is a Diplodocus-like sauropod dinosaur genus. It had a short neck and astonishing 500 teeth, which gives a very distinguishing characteristic from other dinosaurs.

Quick Factsof 500 Teeth Dinosaur

First FoundNiger, Africa by Philippe Taquet
When it Lived100- 110 million years ago, the Cretaceous epoch
Weight4 Tonnes
Length & HeightUp to 10m in length
DietSoft plants, grasses, ferns, water plants, and shoots.
Belong toRebbachisaurid Family

Where was Nigersaurus Discovered?

The generic name Nigersaurus means “Niger Reptile“, in the same time, the specific name “tanqueti” honors the French paleontologist Philippe Taquet, who discovered the first remains in 1976. It wasn’t until more complete remains were found in 1999 during expeditions led by American paleontologist Paul Sereno in 1997 and 2000.

It was discovered in the Elrhaz Formation in Gadoufaua in Niger. It was a category of rebbachisaurid sauropod dinosaur that lived about 115 to 105 million years ago, in the Cretaceous period.

What Did Nigersaurus Look Like?

What Did Nigersaurus Look Like
What Did Nigersaurus Look Like

Nigersaurus is a 30-foot-long plant-eating (herbivores) dinosaur that lived 110 million years ago in Niger’s Sahara Desert – (now a day’s location name). Nigersaurus lived in a luxuriant environment with other predatory dinosaurs, including Suchomimus, the plant eaters Ouranosaurus and Lurdusaurus, and supercroc.

It had a delicate skull and an extremely wide mouth lined with teeth specially adapted for browsing plants close to the ground.It has a long-neck, straight-edged muzzle tipped with more than 500 replaceable teeth.

The original fossil skull of Nigersaurus is one of the first dinosaur skulls to be digitally recreated from CT scans. In November 2007, a reconstructed Nigersaurus skeleton was revealed at the National Geographic Museum in Washington, DC.

Size of the 500 Teeth Dinosaur

As compared to a modern African elephant, Nigersaurus was a medium-sized quadrupedal herbivorous dinosaur.His body was 9 meters long, while his femur bone was 1 meter long. Paleontologists approximate it weighed around 4 tons as an adult.

It had a small head, a short neck, wide hind legs, and a long tail. His bones were thin, and his skull was created for easy feeding.

The structure of the inner ear of Nigersaurus preferable that its head was carried close to the ground. Its diet is mainly ferns and horsetails. 

The Dinosaur with 500 Teeth

It had a broad, “suction clit” shaped mouth, which contained more than 500 teeththat were changed approximately every 14 days. The lower jaw of the Nigersaurus was slightly S-shaped and parted into two sections.

The sub-cylindrical transverse ramus held the 500 teeth, while the rear ramus was lighter and housed most of the muscle attachments.

There were several fenestrae found in the jaws which were not found in other sauropods. Grooves on the front ends of the jaws represented the existence of a keratinous sheath.

Thus, Nigersaurus is the only tetrapod with broader jaws than the skull and teeth extending laterally across the front.

Duckbilled Shaped Mouth

Duckbilled Shaped Mouth
Duckbilled Shaped Mouth

The snout of the Nigersaurus was wider than the hadrosaur (a large flat dinosaur) with “duck-billed” snouts. The greatest evidence for investigating how and what these sauropods (a large long, neck herbivore dinosaur) ate is their “teeth.

His teeth’ little facets and abrasions display a pattern of micro-scratches and pits representing what Nigersaurus ate.

Moreover, it allowed scientists to gather evidence to make an informed decision based onthe Nigersaurus diet, which made up of soft vegetation

Nigersaurus Skull

Nigersaurus Skull
Nigersaurus Skull

It is the first original fossil skull of a dinosaur to be rebuilt digitally using CT scans. With the help of computed tomography to examine its skull, scientists discovered something odd.

It revealed that his “organs of equilibrium” are similar to the semicircular canals in our ears and help maintain our balance.

Thus, Nigersaurus was a ground-level grazer and would have used his 500 teeth like a lawn mower pulling in grass non-stoppable.

Paleontologists also suspect that inspite of having enlarged nostrils, Nigersaurus’s olfactory lobes were significantly small via an examination of its brain cavity. 

Where can I see a Nigersaurus?

You can see the famous 110-million-year-old with 500-teeth Nigersaurus dinosaur fossils in the National Geographic Museum’s Explorers Hall in Washington and Japan. It displays the skeleton, including with skull, and contains all 500 teeth.

Unique Features of 500 Teeth Dinosaur

  • It is the only tetrapod with wider jaws as compared to its skull.
  • It has four more fenestrae [an opening in the skull that is present in front of the eye] than other sauropods.
  • The nostrils were enlarged, and the lowerjaws were S-shaped.
  • Due to their unique skull features and eating habits, he was given the nickname “Mesozoic cow.”
  • Only 1.0 cm2 of bone joined the muzzle to the back of the skull (0.16 sq. on). These connecting strut’s bones were less than 2 mm thick.
  • A closed supratemporal fenestra was another differentiating feature among sauropodomorphs.
  • According to paleontologists, a Nigersaurus’ jawbone hatchling was so small that it would “fit on top of a silver dollar.”


Hopefully, you get a complete idea of which dinosaur has 500 teeth. However, Nigersaurus is a harmless dinosaur that probably lived 115 million years ago.

If this article is helpful, kindly let us know while commenting below.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *