a carnivorous albertosaurine tyrannosaurid dinosaur from the Late Cretaceous of Canada.
(Corpse-Eating Alberta Lizard)Etymology
is derived from "Alberta" (its place of discovery; named after Princess Louise Caroline Alberta [1848-1939], the fourth daughter of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert) and the Greek "sauros" (lizard). The species epithet
, is derived from the Greek "sarx (flesh) and "phagein" (to eat). Particularly popular with Egyptians and Romans, a sarcophagus is a stone coffin or funeral container which, when filled with lime, would "eat" the flesh from the (normally Royal) corpse within.
The first fossils of Albertosaurus
were discovered in the Horseshoe Canyon Formation alongside the Red Deer River near Drumheller, Alberta, Canada by renowned geologist Joseph B. Tyrrell in 1884.
(CMN 5600) is a partial skull that E.D. Cope originally assigned to Laelaps incrassatus
in 1892. Bizarrely, Laelaps
had been officially renamed Dryptosaurus
by O.C. Marsh 15 years earlier but Cope refused to follow the work of his "bone wars" nemesis. Lawrence Lambe officially changed Laelaps incrassatus
to Dryptosaurus incrassatus
in 1904, and a year later H.F. Osborne coined Albertosaurus sarcophagus
for CMN 5600 in the same AMNH bulletin that he described Tyrannosaurus rex
: Late Cretaceous
: 73-67 mya
Est. max. length
: 8.6 meters
Est. max. hip height
: 3 meters
Est. max. weight
: 2.4 tons
was named by Greg Paul in 1988 for a small tyrannosaurid skeleton from Montana's Hell Creek Formation. It was renamed Dinotyrannus megagracilis
by George Olshevsky in 1995 but it most probably represents a juvenile specimen of Tyrannosaurus rex
is based on a partial skeleton (ROM 807) discovered in the Edmonton Formation near the Red Deer River by Gus Lindblad and Ralph Hornell in 1928. In 1970 Dale Russell showed it to be indistinguishable from Albertosaurus sarcophagus
was originally named Gorgosaurus libratus
by Lawrence Lambe in 1914, based on a partial skeleton discovered in the Dinosaur Park Formation by Charles H. Sternberg in 1913. Dale Russell declared Gorgosaurus
a junior synonym of Albertosaurus
in 1970, though most paleontologists follow Philip J. Currie's 2003 work and keep the two apart as they are no more similar than Daspletosaurus
is to Tyrannosaurus
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