Ampelosaurus is a member of the suborder Sauropod and is a Titanosaur. It is believed that it went extinct around 70 million to 66 million years ago. Its fossils have been found in places like Spain and France.

Key Facts

Ampelosaurus pronunciationAm-pe-lo-sore-us
What does Ampelosaurus mean?Vineyard lizard or vine lizard
Dinosaur typeSauropod
On the menuHerbivore
Length50 ft (15 meters)
Weight20.000 lbs (9000 kg)
Life expectancyUp to 100 years
Legs used to get aroundQuadrupedal
Estimated top speedUnknown
When they livedAbout 70 to 66 million years ago
Where they have been found?Europe

When & Where

The Ampelosaurus used to roam the Earth from the Campanian Age to the Maastrichtian stage of the Cretaceous period about 70 to 66 million years ago. 

The sauropod Ampelosaurus was discovered during the expedition of a team of French paleontologists in 1989. They were digging a bonebed known as ‘Compane-sur-Aude.’ They came across large limbs, ribs and vertebrae. Its fossils were collected in the levels of the Marnes Rouges Formation.

It was then moved into a museum and was forgotten until Jean Le Loeff discovered other large bones in 1995 during his expedition in a vineyard in Southern France. He knew immediately that such bones belonged to the same kind of sauropod discovered in 1989. 

Size & Weight

Based on the bones recovered, the Ampelosaurus was said to be about 15 meters long (50’), making it twice as long as the Appalachiosaurus. It weighed around 20,000 lbs (9 tons).

Mobility & Diet

Mainly fed on various plant materials like leaves, barks and twigs all throughout their life. With their humongous size, they needed to eat more than a ton of vegetation every day. These were digested with the help of the gastroliths present in their gut. 

Interesting Points

  • It is closely related to the Saltosaurus of South America.
  • Its tail was used as a defense from its predators like the Tarascosaurus and the deadly Pyroraptor.

Featured Image Credit: ДиБгд at Russian Wikipedia, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons