Edmontonia (Wikimedia Commons).


Edmontonia ("from Edmonton"); pronounced ED-mon-TOE-nee-ah


Woodlands of North America

Historical Period:

Late Cretaceous (75-65 million years ago)

Size and Weight:

About 20 feet long and three tons



Distinguishing Characteristics:

Low-slung body; sharp spikes on shoulders; lack of tail club

About Edmontonia

Edmonton in Canada is one of the few regions in the world with two dinosaurs named after it--the duck-billed herbivore Edmontosaurus, and the armored nodosaur Edmontonia. However, you should bear in mind that Edmontonia was named not after the city, but after the "Edmonton Formation" where it was discovered; there's no evidence that it actually lived in the environs of Edmonton itself. The type specimen of this dinosaur was discovered in Canada's Alberta Province in 1915, by the swashbuckling fossil hunter Barnum Brown, and initially assigned as a species of the nodosaur genus Palaeoscincus ("ancient skink"), a classification that fortunately never caught on.

Naming issues aside, Edmontonia was a formidable dinosaur, with its bulky, low-slung body, armor plating along its back, and--most intimidatingly--the sharp spikes jutting out from its shoulders, which may have been used to deter predators or to fight other males for the right to mate (or both). Some paleontologists also believe Edmontonia was capable of producing honking sounds, which would truly have made it the SUV of nodosaurs. (By the way, Edmontosaurus and other nodosaurs lacked the tail clubs of classic armored dinosaurs like Ankylosaurus, which may or may not have made them more vulnerable to predation by tyrannosaurs and raptors.)

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Your Citation
Strauss, Bob. "Edmontonia." ThoughtCo, Feb. 16, 2021, thoughtco.com/edmontonia-1092862. Strauss, Bob. (2021, February 16). Edmontonia. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/edmontonia-1092862 Strauss, Bob. "Edmontonia." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/edmontonia-1092862 (accessed June 6, 2023).