The Baryonyx was a theropod that was smaller than its relatives, the Spinosaurus and Suchomimus, and mainly inhabited parts of Africa and Europe about 125 million years ago during the Lower Cretaceous. This genus belonged to the Spinosauridae family, which consists of other theropod dinosaurs.

Key facts

Baryonyx pronunciationThe name Baryonyx can be pronounced as “bah-ree-ON-icks”.
What does Baryonyx mean?Baryonyx was derived from two Greek words which are barys- which means “strong” or “heavy” and -onyx, which means “claws”. The name translates to “heavy claw” as seen on the animal’s large claw on the first finger.
Dinosaur typeTheropod
On the menuCarnivore
Length7.5-10 meters (24-33 feet)
Height 2.5 meters (at hip height)
Weight1.3-1.9 tons (2,645-3,800 lbs)
Life expectancyAccording to German paleontologists Katja Waskow and Mateus, these dinosaurs have a life expectancy of 20-25 years.
Legs used to get aroundAccording to studies, the Baryonyx was mainly bipedal but used all of its 4 legs at times (quadrupedal).
Estimated top speedThe exact speed of the Baryonyx is not yet identified but it was a quick dinosaur. It was considered to have a good speed on land and even better speed in water as a swimmer. Thus it was one of the faster dinosaurs.
When they livedThe Baryonyx lived during the Early Cretaceous, which was about 125 million years ago.
Where they have been found?Their species was found in Surrey, England.

When & Where

In 1983, the first skeleton of the Baryonyx was discovered by fossil collector William J. Walker while exploring the Smokejacks Pit, a pit located in the Weald Clay Formation, which was near Ockley, located in Surrey, England. According to W.J. Walker, the fossil that he found was only a rock, in which he also discovered a claw. After realizing that the tip of the claw was missing, he then came back to search for other remains some weeks later and was able to find a part of a rib and a phalanx bone.

Size & Weight

Although belonging to the group of Theropods, the Baryonyx was smaller compared to its relatives, the Spinosaurus, and the Suchomimus. Upon discovery, it was concluded that this type of dinosaur can reach up to 10 meters (33 feet) long and 2.5 meters (8.25 feet) high at the hips.

Mobility & Diet

Just like other theropod dinosaurs, the Baryonyx was a carnivore. Upon discovery, paleontologists concluded that this dinosaur ate fishes, similar to its relatives such as the Spinosaurus and the Suchomimus, and they were also able to find the remains of partially eaten bones of an Iguanodon. This means that the Baryonyx both ate fishes and dinosaurs.

Interesting Points

  • The Baryonyx lived from Berriasian Age to 113 million years ago.
  • They lived in clay.
  • Was a carnivore.
  • Just like most dinosaurs, this dinosaur reproduced by laying eggs.
  • 9 different specimens have been found by paleontologists.
  • Even though this dinosaur was named after the claws on its first finger, it was in no way referenced to another family of carnivorous dinosaurs, such as the Raptors.