Skorpiovenator scavenging from a sauropod nest.


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

Rank: Family

Common names:

Abel's lizards

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Majungasaurus Majungasaurus
Although tyrannosaurs ruled in the northern hemisphere, abelisaurs such as Majungasaurus reigned in the south. Many Majungasaurus skulls and bones have been found and studied.


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Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web

When they lived

Discover the other animals and plants that lived during the following geological time periods.

Cretaceous period Cretaceous period
The Cretaceous ended with the most famous mass extinction in history - the one that killed the dinosaurs. Prior to that, it was a warm period with no ice caps at the poles.