Abelisaurs were the top predators of their time replacing the earlier carcharodontosaurs. They ruled the southern hemisphere, while the mighty tyrannosaurs reigned in the north. Not as big as the tyrannosaurs they were still a force to be reckoned with. These giant killers would have torn flesh from the local sauropods, or even each other, as Majungasaurus did.
Skulls have been found with some interesting ornamentations including bony crests and horns above the eyes, pits and grooves. These were possibly for the purposes of display. The forelimbs of abelisaurs such as Carnotaurus were short and may not have been used. Fossils from this family of theropod dinosaur have, so far, only been found in South America, Africa and the Indian Subcontinent.
Scientific name: Abelisauridae
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Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web
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Abelisauridae (meaning "Abel's lizards") is a family (or clade) of ceratosaurian theropod dinosaurs. Abelisaurids thrived during the Cretaceous Period, on the ancient southern supercontinent of Gondwana, and today their fossil remains are found on the modern continents of Africa and South America, as well as on the Indian subcontinent and the island of Madagascar. Abelisaurids first appear in the fossil record of the early middle Jurassic period, and at least one species (Majungasaurus crenatissimus) survived until the end of the Mesozoic era 66 million years ago.
Like most theropods, abelisaurids were carnivorous bipeds. They were characterized by stocky hindlimbs and extensive ornamentation of the skull bones, with grooves and pits. In many abelisaurids, like Carnotaurus, the forelimbs are vestigial, the skull is shorter and bony crests grows above the eyes. Most of the known abelisaurids would have been between 5 to 9 meters (17 to 30 ft) in length, from snout to tip of tail, with a new and as yet unnamed specimen from northwestern Turkana in Kenya, Africa reaching a possible length of 11–12 meters (36 to 39 feet). Before becoming well known, fragmentary abelisaurid remains were occasionally misidentified as possible South American tyrannosaurids.