Dinosaurs in Antarctica

For long, scientists thought Antarctica had no dinosaurs as there was no evidence. Dinosaur fossils were discovered here not very long ago, indicating that it was once warm enough to let the ‘terrible lizards’ thrive. But they could not live there when the continent froze around 34 million years ago. That is mainly why so few fossils have been found in Antarctica. It is also because very little of the rocks’ surface from the age of the dinosaurs is exposed here, and uncovering them needs a lot of effort, time, and funds.

Paleontologists discovered the first dinosaur fossils in 1990-91 in the central Transantarctic Mountains of the continent. They uncovered the bones of Cryolophosaurus ellioti near the Beardmore Glacier at a site on Mount Kirkpatrick. It was a species unknown to science at that time. Another unknown dinosaur’s bones were unearthed alongside this specimen, later known as Glacialisaurus hammeri. More excavations on Mt. Kirkpatrick in 2003 revealed more species of Cryolophosaurus and Glacialisaurus. They date back to the Mesozoic era nearly 200 million years ago when the continent was a temperate forest attached to Australia, forming a part of Gondwanaland.

Dinosaurs in Antarctica

List of Dinosaurs That Lived In Antarctica

  • Antarctopelta
  • Cryolophosaurus
  • Glacialisaurus
  • Imperobator
  • Morrosaurus
  • Trinisaura

Places Where the Fossils are Preserved

The actual dinosaur fossils of Antarctica can be seen at the Buffalo Museum of Science, New York. Visitors can also dig up the pretend fossils in a simulated Antarctic environment. Some museums, like the Witte Museum in San Antonio, Texas, and the Natural History Museum of Utah, have periodic Antarctic dinosaur exhibits of fossils.