Dinosaur Anatomy

Dinosaur Crests

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Many dinosaurs had crests, plates, or other ornamental decorations on their heads. It is believed that some of these head crests were brightly decorated, possibly to attract other mates, to estimate the age of the dinosaur, and to differentiate from other members of different herds. Some of these crests were simply for display, for defense, and others perhaps for communication.

Parasaurolophus had long tube-like crests. These crests measured up to 6 feet in length and were used for communication. Dinosaurs with the largest and most complicated crests were hadrosaurs. Head crests are mainly found on herbivore dinosaurs.

Carnivore dinosaurs that had head crests include Carnotaurus and Dilophosaurus. Their main purpose was ornamental.

Carnotaurus attacking a Stegosaurus