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Scientific name: Allosaurus fragilis
Common name: Allosaurus
Meaning of name: Different lizard
Age: Jurassic, 145 mya
Distribution: United States
This Allosaurus claw was found in the famous Bone Cabin Quarry in Wyoming. Although known for its variety of dinosaurs, Bone Cabin is not as prolific in allosaur remains as the Cleveland-Lloyd quarry in central Utah where parts of over 40 different individual allosaurs have been found. Most allosaurs have been found in Utah, Colorado, and Wyoming. The vast area that these three states covers seems to have been their territory. They were a meat-eating dinosaur and along with Torvosaurus and Ceratosaurus, two other large predators of the Jurassic, were at the top of the food chain during that time period. I have always found it interesting that the largest dinosaurs such as Diplodocus and Brachiosaurus were hunted by relatively small meat-eaters like Allosaurus. T-Rex by contrast, living 70 million years later and being the largest carnivore, was left to dine on much smaller prey such as Triceratops as all the long-necks had long been extinct.
Allosaurus walked on its hind legs but had powerful front limbs, which were used to take down prey. This claw comes from the hind foot and would have had a sheath of nail over it for even greater length and sharpness. A feared hunter from a young age, Allosaurus grew to about 30 feet in length.