HomeAnimalsWhat Dinosaur has 500 teeth and Why? (Facts about Nigersaurus)

What Dinosaur has 500 teeth and Why? (Facts about Nigersaurus)

Internet users are being warned not to fall for a “Don’t google which dinosaur had 500 teeth” prank after sick Reddit users made a racist joke go viral.

The message has spread on social media and one of the autofill suggestions appears on Google. 

Nigersaurus had 500 slender teeth lining his wide mouth.

Nigersaurus: Facts and Figures



Temporal range: Aptian – Albian 115–105 Ma 

Nigersaurus mount.jpg
Reconstructed skeleton in Japan
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Clade: Dinosauria
Clade: Saurischia
Clade: Sauropodomorpha
Clade: Sauropoda
Superfamily: Diplodocoidea
Family: Rebbachisauridae
Genus: Nigersaurus
Sereno et al., 1999
N. taqueti
Binomial name
Nigersaurus taqueti
Sereno et al., 1999


Exactly what does Nigersaurus mean?

This dinosaur was discovered more than 100 million years ago and its name means “Niger’s Lizard” or “Niger reptile”. There was a 30-foot-long plant-eating dinosaur named Nigersaurus. Sauropod dinosaurs belonging to this genus are similar in appearance to Diplodocus. During the Aptian or Albian era during the middle Cretaceous period, it lived around 119 million years ago.

Niger’s Elrhaz Formation has a rich fossil fauna that includes a fossil vertebrate named Gadoufaoua. It wasn’t until 1999 that more complete fossil remains of this dinosaur were discovered and described.

French paleontologist Philippe Taquet discovered the first remains of Nigersaurus taqueria and named the genus after him.

Its skull had a very specialized function when it came to feeding. There were four large side fenestrae and openings in the sides of this animal, which characterized it as having a thin skull. The wide muzzle of its mouth had more than 500 teeth that were replaced every 14 days. There is a possibility that the jaws had a wide beak-like keratinous sheath. 

The only dinosaur known to have had jaws wider than its skull and teeth extending laterally across its face is the Nigersaurus. The upper jaw’s teeth may have been 20–30% larger than the lower jaw’s teeth.

A replacement tooth lay under every active tooth throughout the jaw. 68 upper jaw columns and 60 lower jaw columns contained over 500 active and replacement teeth.

Nigersaurus teeth had ten times as much enamel on their outward-facing sides as their inner sides.

What was the Size of the Nigersaurus Dinosaur?

Nigersaurus was a sauropod with a small head and a prominent tail. A 9 meter (30 foot) long body and a 3 meter (3 feet 3 inch) long femur were its only measurements.

Nigersaurus Dinosaur Weight:

It was estimated to weigh around 4 tons (4.4 short tons), about the same as a modern elephant. Compared to sauropods, its neck had thirteen cervical vertebrae.


There were many rebbachisaurids with short necks and shorter than 10 m (33 ft) length. There was only one member of the family large enough to compete with larger sauropods: Rebbachisaurus.

The 500 Teeth of Nigersaurus Dinosaur

Having been on the field for only one week, it has been an amazing experience! There is always something surprising to discover on a dune. Our first day led us to discover a long-necked dinosaur called Nigersaurus. A three-year-old expedition here yielded bones that we named Nigersaurus. A sauropod (long-necked dinosaur) has as many as 500 slender teeth in its skull. It is necessary to find the rest of this dinosaur in order to describe and reconstruct it.

Nigersaurus: The 'Mesozoic Cow' With More Than 500 Teeth | HowStuffWorks

Our goal is getting closer now that we’ve discovered a skeleton a few days later! While lying on its side, this skeleton’s tail curves upward. The backbone curves for about 15 feet. Using a brush, the sand was brushed off of a skeleton that dates back 110 million years. In order to transport the skeleton back to the lab, each part of the skeleton will be plastered.

Nigersaurus isn’t all it has to offer. Chris discovered a baby Nigersaurus in a purple-colored sandstone flat area whose upper jaw can fit on top of a silver dollar! The Nigersaurus died and fossilized not more than a year after hatching.

The Hype of Nigersaurus on Social Media & Reddit: 

Nigersaurus is found when people search for the question. A joke-turned-meme has spread across social media platforms, especially Reddit. It is shocking to see juvenile jokers accusing the name of being the N-word on the internet. A warning against searching appeared for the first time in September 2019.

“Don’t Google dinosaurs with 500 teeth.” /r/teenagers user posted in /r/teenagers. The account has since been deleted.

The discovery of dinosaurs with 500 teeth led to the creation of countless memes, such as “don’t google dinosaurs with 500 teeth. The worst mistake ever.”.

Memes have sometimes been combined with racial slurs, such as “OK dinosaur with 500 teeth.”.This creature’s name is in reference to its discovery country, the Republic of Niger.

Located in West Africa, this country is landlocked and was home to the first dinosaur fossil discovery in 1976.American paleontologist Paul Sereno led expeditions in 1999 that found more complete remains of Nigersaurus taqueria.

A French paleontologist named Philippe Taquet discovered the first remains of the species in 1976 and called it Nigersaurus, a reptile from the Niger region.

In the Elrhaz Formation, a fossil called Gadoufaua was found in Niger.The Nigersaurus dinosaur lived about 115 million years ago during the Cretaceous period.

During the time of the herbivores, the lush swamps of the Sahara Desert would have been home to the herbivores. In addition to its delicate, unusual skull and 500 slender teeth, it was specially adapted for browsing low-growing plants.

In addition to ouranosaurus and ouranosaurids, nigersaurus lived alongside the plant-eating dinosaurs ouranosaurus and lurdusaurus, and the supercroc.

This bizarre, long-necked dinosaur has more than 500 replaceable teeth on its muzzle. The fossil skull of Nigersaurus has been digitally reconstructed from CT scans for the first time. Nigersaurus skeletons were unveiled in November 2007 at the National Geographic Museum in Washington DC.


Kathy Salveine
Kathy Salveine
Hi, I am Kathy. I completed a Master's Degree in Research & Marketing at the University College Manchester and I love to write articles about health problems, tech product reviews, packaging designs, and parenting.


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