If you are here looking for answers about these keywords of dinosaurs and 500 teeth, it is probably because you read some memes around them. Until or unless you are a researcher, there are not many reasons why a person will want to know about this. However, it all started with a post in September 2019 by a user on a social media platform namely, Reddit. The post said, “Don’t Google which dinosaur had 500 teeth”. Well, the reaction of the netizens was the opposite, and people went crazy about Googling this on the internet.
Resultantly, this went viral in no time, and a whopping number of internet users were typing the words dinosaur with 500 teeth on the online search engines. Just for your information, the user who posted about this on Reddit was quick to delete their account during this episode. However, the trend continues on YouTube and other online sources as a meme.
It does not matter if you came here because of the jokes going around or out of curiosity to get an answer; this post is not going to beat around the bush. Here are some answers that will settle down the above question that has been floating around as a joke.
Nigersaurus – the dinosaur with 500 teeth
Let’s settle this down for once and all; the name of the dinosaur specie is Nigersaurus which is known to have had a set of 500 teeth. Here are all the details about its name, age, origin, and other things you might be interested to know.
According to reports published by authenticated sources, it was the year 1976 when some of the remains of Nigersaurus were located in a West African country. A French paleontologist namely, Phillippe Taquet had found the fossil of this dinosaur but he could not complete the same. Thus, not many people paid attention to this species and the topic got faded after some time.
However, the more interesting part is that it was several years later when all remains of this dinosaur were found. The credit for this final discovery belongs to the American paleontologist Paul Sereno and one of his colleagues. Paul is renowned to lead his students and everyone else on the path of adventure as a devoted teacher of paleontology.
He abides by the statement ‘adventure with a purpose’ and has contributed significantly to the historical findings. He has discovered several dinosaur remains and Nigersaurus – the dinosaur with 500 teeth is one of them.
Details about the meaning of its name
As far as the name Nigersaurus is concerned, it seems to connote the place, the Republic of the Niger, where this species was found. Let’s take and understand this literally. The scientific name of this species is Nigersaurus Taqueti, where Nigersaurus implies a reptile from the Niger region. The other half of its name which is Taqueti is a tribute to its first founder who was Phillippe Taqueti in 1976. Thus, the name holds great significance as to its discovery locations and the discoverer.
Details about the age and habitat of this species
As per the studies and research conducted by the top scientists, paleontologists, and other hardcore finders, Nigersaurus is said to have been in existence about 105 to 115 million years ago. It indicates that it was prevalent in the middle of the Cretaceous period. With Nigersaurus as its genus, Rebbchisauridae is known to be its family group. Talking about the specific region, it traces back to Elrhaz Formation in a region known to be Gadoufaoua.
Details about the physical appearance of this species
Now, it is clear that while looking for which dinosaur has 500 teeth, people are going to get the name Nigersaurus besides the viral memes due to the post of the Reddit user. If curiosity has brought you so far, let’s dig into its physical traits.
According to the biological classification, researchers have put Nigersaurus in the category of dinosaur which is a rebbachisaurid sauropod. It might look to be somewhat shorter or smaller when compared to the typical size of a sauropod. The reason behind such a conclusion is that it was found to be of length around 31 feet or 9 meters which are typically lesser than the sauropods. Even the size of its head was small and the legs were thick hind. Also, the neck was not as long as other sauropods.
Details about the food habits and teeth of this species
Now, coming back to the primary topic of a dinosaur with 500 teeth, it becomes obvious to talk about its teeth and its diet thereon. Analyzing the type and size of its teeth, the claims are that Nigersaurus was an herbivore or a plant-eater dinosaur. Further studies reveal that its teeth were naturally of the traits that would make it easier for this species to explore plants that were closer to the ground.
Its 500 teeth are detected to be utterly slender where the lower set was somewhat smaller than that of the upper one. Its curved crown teeth along with unequal enamel enabled Nigersaurus to slash and bite the plants easily.
Paul’s website also points in the same direction and has published that, “Nigersaurus lived in a lush environment alongside the predatory dinosaur suchomimus, the plant-eaters ouranosaurus and lurdusaurus, and supercroc.” This statement also gives the conclusion that Nigersaurus had the traits of being around and feeding on plants.
Their teeth were ideally designed for their carnivorous attitude. The lower teeth were 20-30% smaller than the upper jaw teeth. Additionally, the teeth had curved tooth crowns and asymmetrical enamels (thicker on the outside). It allowed them to tear plants from ground level. The interesting point to note is that its set of 500 teeth included both permanent and replacement teeth.
So, what started as a meme in 2019 and picked up pace in 2020 through several social media platforms indeed has so many interesting things that one should know. A dinosaur with 500 teeth might have been a prank but it holds so much knowledge also.
Alex is fascinated with “understanding” people. It’s actually what drives everything he does. He believes in a thoughtful exploration of how you shape your thoughts, experience of the world.