Tsintaosaurus, meaning “Qingdao lizard,” is a genus of hadrosaurid dinosaur from the Late Cretaceous Period (83 to 71 million years ago). It lived in Southeast Asia, in what today is Shanong, located in southern China. The type species, T. spinorhinus, was described by C.C. Young in 1958.
This hadrosaur is typically reconstructed with a unicorn-like crest on its skull. But studies conducted in the 1990s suggested the crest was actually a broken bone from the top of the snout distorted upward by crushing. The studies also suggested that Tsintaosaurus was actually a junior synonym of the similar but crestless hadrosaur Tanius. However, a second specimen showing the same upright crest has since been discovered, proving that the crest was indeed real.
Tsintaosaurus was about 33 feet long, 12 feet tall and weighed 3 tons at adult size. This dinosaur had a characteristic “˜duck bill’ snout and a battery of powerful teeth which it used to chew up vegetation. It was a quadruped, but could rear up on its hind legs to scout for predators and flee when it spotted one. Like other hadrosaurs, this dinosaur most likely lived in herds.