The ankylosaurs are known as the “tanks” of the dinosaurs. This is because they are covered heavily with plated armour for protection. This armour encases nearly the entire body including the eyelids in some cases. The plates are oval to rectangular in shape and have a ridge that extends the length of it. They may also be strongly concave. These armoured plates are composed of bone material and embedded in the skin in rows. The legs, the underside of the body and the gaps that are created between the rows of armour are all shielded with nickel to pea-sized armour pieces. In addition to plates of armour along the body, some families of ankylosaur have spikes along the neck and body that protrude laterally for further protection. In some species, at the end of the tail a bony club may sit which could be used to thwart an attack from a carnivore. The ankylosaur would swing the clubbed tail to ward off predators. The ankylosaur was a highly defensive unit. They were very well protected from predators not only with an armoured body, but also in some cases, a club to go on the offensive with.
Contents Back Next