dip - Low - doh - cuss
90 feet (27 m)
22 feet (7 m)
20 tons (18,000 kilos)
Late Jurassic - 152 mya
Fossil remains for this Dinosaur have been found in Western United States
Diplodocus is a very famous giant
Jurassic plant-eater. It was a huge,
long-necked dinosaur, almost 100 feet
long! In fact, it is the longest
complete dinosaur skeleton ever
discovered. Since its hind legs were
longer than its front legs, this tells
us that Diplodocus probably ate plants
that were low to the ground. It was so
big, however, that it could push trees
over in order to get the leaves at the
top down to the ground! It would
probably stand on its hind legs to push,
but it could not hold that pose for very
Philanthropist Andrew Carnegie had a lot
to do with making dinosaurs popular and, in
particular, the Diploducus. The team of
scientists who discovered this huge creature
was working for Carnegie when they made the
discovery. Carnegie was so amazed at the
size of the dinosaur that he had copies made
and sent to 11 museums around the world.
This helped make many millions of people
aware of this great creature.
Diploducus is the namesake of the
Diplodocid family - long neck, pillar like
legs, long tapering tail and enormous size.
It had, like the other family members,
peg-like teeth in an elongated head that
seemed very small for such a large creature.
There is much speculation about how much
these creatures needed to eat and how such a
small head could ingest enough food to fuel
such a large body. Some scientists have
stated that these huge, small-headed
creatures would have needed to eat every
waking moment in order to provide enough
food to keep such a large body alive.
Like many other large sauropods,
Diploducus probably swallowed stones which
it kept in a gizzard similar to that found
in a chicken to facilitate digesting food.
The tough plant fibers would spend time in
the gizzard stewing and being ground up by
the stones. There is some speculation about
the use of the very long tail of Diploducus
and other members of its family. If it was
used as a weapon, it would be very deadly.
Because of its length, the speed at the tip,
if swung forcefully, would have been very
high, possibly faster than the speed of