The Einiosaurus was a herbivorous centrosaurine ceratop that lived roughly 74 million years ago in the present-day USA. This dinosaur, like the Pachyrhinosaurus and Achelousaurus, had a unique nasal horn that curled forward. In addition to a massive horn on its nose and a thick bony frill at the rear of its head, it was distinguished by small, rounded supraorbital horns over its eyes.

Key Facts

Einiosaurus pronunciationAy-nee-o-sore-us
What does Einiosaurus mean?Buffalo lizard
Dinosaur typeCeratops
On the menuHerbivorous
Length16 feet (5 meters)
Height6.5 feet (2 meters)
Weight1.5 tons
Life expectancyUnknown
Legs used to get aroundQuadrupedal
Estimated top speedUnknown
When they livedUpper Cretaceous, 74 million years ago
Where they have been found?USA, North America

When & Where

The first Einiosaurus remains were discovered in Montana, USA, in 1992. The fossils lay in the Two Medicine Formation—a rock formation dating back to the Upper Cretaceous period. American paleontologist, Scott Sampson, would officially name the species Einiosaurus procurvicornis in 1995.

Among the recovered fossils, scientists found 3 skulls and numerous bones belonging to at least 15 individuals. From this, they deduced that this dinosaur probably lived in herds like the Styracosaurus and the Centrosaurus.

Size & Weight

Approximately 16 feet (5 meters) long and 7 feet (2 meters) tall, the Einiosaurus was a medium-sized dinosaur. It weighed around 1.5 tons (1,360 kg), making it a relatively small dinosaur compared to other ceratopsians.

Mobility & Diet

Einiosaurus was a quadrupedal dinosaur, meaning that it walked on all fours. It is believed to have been much faster and more agile than its larger relatives. However, its top speed remains unknown.

This dinosaur was herbivorous and fed on plants. From the sedimentary preservation of its fossils, it most probably lived in floodplains and fed on the lush vegetation that grew there.

Interesting Points

  • The Einiosaurus was built for defense, with its large horns and bony frill. These features were thought to be used for making loud noises and intimidating predators.
  • The word “einiosaurus” comes from the Blackfoot word “eini“, meaning buffalo, and the Greek word “sauros“, meaning lizard.
  • The Einiosaurus is closely related to the Pachyrhinosaurus and Achelousaurus, two other ceratopsian dinosaurs.
  • All known remains of the Einiosaurus can be found at the Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman, Montana, USA.

Featured Image Credit: Nobu Tamura, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons