Dinosaur Maps

  1. Late Triassic
  2. Early Jurassic
  3. Mid–Late Jurassic
  4. Early Cretaceous
  5. Late Cretaceous
  6. Index
  7. References

These are a series of maps showing when and where different dinosaurs lived, as well as what sizes they were. I am not a palaeontologist or palaeoartist, as you can probably see, so the depictions may be more or less accurate. But I thought it was worth trying and hope it might still be useful in understanding their diversity and how they developed over time.

Each map covers about 10 million years, though the length varies to avoid uncertain edge cases. This is a tremendous amount of time – more than our entire hominin lineage has been around – but unfortunately hard to reliably divide further. But many individual formations will cover a narrower band of time, and when one portion covers most of its diversity I have tried to choose representatives from it, so as to be more likely to have actually lived together.

This is a work in progress. So far maps have been completed to the earliest Cretaceous, which should leave another seven to go. And of course this is still an active area of research, for which see the references below.

Josh Grosse – Contact

Late Triassic

Carnian-E Norian dinosaurs

M Norian dinosaurs

L Norian-Rhaetian dinosaurs

Early Jurassic

Hettangian-E Sinemurian dinosaurs

L Sinemurian-Pliensbachian dinosaurs

Toarcian dinosaurs

Mid–Late Jurassic

Aalenian-Bajocian-Bathonian dinosaurs

Callovian-Oxfordian dinosaurs

Kimmeridgian-Tithonian dinosaurs

Early Cretaceous

Berriasian-Valanginian dinosaurs



Formations: Bull Canyon - Cañadón Asfalto - Caturrita - Cedar Mountain: Yellow Cat - Chinle: Petrified Forest, Siltstone - Dharmaram: Upper - Elliot: Upper - Forest Marble - Forest Sandstone - Ischigualasto - Kayenta - La Quinta - Los Colorados - Lourinhã - Löwenstein - Lufeng - Morrison - Oxford Clay - Portland - Quebrada del Barro - Sao Khua - Shaximiao: Lower, Upper - Shishugou - Tendaguru - Tiaojishan - Tiouraren - Toundoute - Trossingen

Genera: Afrovenator - Agilisaurus - Allosaurus - Anchiornis - Anchisaurus - Archaeopteryx - Atlasaurus - Barapasaurus - Berberosaurus - Brachytrachelopan - Camarasaurus - Camelotia - Cedarosaurus - Ceratosaurus - Cetiosauriscus - Cetiosaurus - Chilesaurus - Chromogisaurus - Coelophysis - Coloradisaurus - Compsognathus - Cryolophosaurus - Daemonosaurus - Dicraeosaurus - Dilophosaurus - Diplodocus - Draconyx - Dracoraptor - Dracovenator - Dysalotosaurus - Efraasia - Elaphrosaurus - Emausaurus - Eoabelisaurus - Eodromaeus - Euhelopus - Eustreptospondylus - Fruitadens - Gastonia - Giraffatitan - Gojirasaurus - Guanlong - Herrerasaurus - Hesperornithoides - Heterodontosaurus - Hippodraco - Huayangosaurus - Hypselospinus - Ingentia - Jaklapallisaurus - Jiangjunosaurus - Jobaria - Kentrosaurus - Kulindadromeus - Lamplughsaura - Lapparentosaurus - Laquintasaura - Leinkupal - Lessemsaurus - Liliensternus - Limusaurus - Loricatosaurus - Lourinhasaurus - Lucianovenator - Lufengosaurus - Mamenchisaurus - Massospondylus - Megalosaurus - Megapnosaurus - Melanorosaurus - Miragaia - Mussaurus - Mymoorapelta - Nanosaurus - Nqwebasaurus - Omeisaurus - Panguraptor - Patagosaurus - Phuwiangosaurus - Phuwiangvenator - Piatnitzkysaurus - Plateosaurus - Podokesaurus - Pradhania - Proceratosaurus - Procompsognathus - Pulanesaura - Rhoetosaurus - Sarahsaurus - Saltriovenator - Saturnalia - Scelidosaurus - Scutellosaurus - Sinosaurus - Sinraptor - Spinophorosaurus - Spinostropheus - Staurikosaurus - Stenopelix - Stegosaurus - Stokesosaurus - ‘Syntarsus’ - Tachiraptor - Tazoudasaurus - Tawa - Tehuelchesaurus - Thecodontosaurus - Tianyulong - Tienshanosaurus - Torvosaurus - Tuojiangosaurus - Unaysaurus - Utahraptor - Vulcanodon - Xuanhanosaurus - Yangchuanosaurus - Yinlong - Zupaysaurus


The coastlines here are taken from Scotese’s maps included with GPlates, which note depict something within the time slice but may be a few million years off from the given numerical date. The locations of geological formations and fossils are then based on the amazing PBDB Navigator, which was the inspiration for trying this. As noted I have not carefully vetted the size and depictions of dinosaurs, which should all be taken with some salt, but here are some of the resources that have helped me sort through them:

  1. Dixon (2007). The World Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs & Prehistoric Creatures.
  2. Paul (2016). The Princeton Field Guide to Dinosaurs, 2nd ed.
  3. www.prehistoric-wildlife.com

What I have checked through as best I can are the dates when different types lived, which are still an active area of research. These have been updated based on the references below. When there is considerable uncertainty as to which map something is most likely to belong on it is shown with a question mark.

Late Triassic

  1. Novas et al. (2010). New dinosaur species from the Upper Triassic Upper Maleri and Lower Dharmaram formations of Central India. [N.B. the correlated formations have been dated earlier than given in this paper]
  2. Irmis et al. (2011). High-resolution U–Pb ages from the Upper Triassic Chinle Formation (New Mexico, USA) support a diachronous rise of dinosaurs.
  3. Kent et al. (2014). Age constraints on the dispersal of dinosaurs in the Late Triassic from magnetochronology of the Los Colorados Formation (Argentina).
  4. Martínez et al. (2015). A new Late Triassic vertebrate assemblage from Northwestern Argentina.
  5. Langer et al. (2018). U-Pb age constraints on dinosaur rise from south Brazil.
  6. Bordy et al. (2020). A chronostratigraphic framework for the upper Stormberg Group: implications for the Triassic-Jurassic boundary in southern Africa.
  7. Desojo et al. (2020). The Late Triassic Ischigualasto Formation at Cerro Las Lajas (La Rioja, Argentina): fossil tetrapods, high resolution chronostratigraphy, and faunal stratigraphy.
  8. Kent & Clemmensen (2021). Northward dispersal of dinosaurs from Gondwana to Greenland at the mid-Norian (215-212 Ma, Late Triassic) dip in atmospheric pCO2.

Early Jurassic

  1. Marsh (2014). The age of the Kayenta Formation of Northeastern Arizona.
  2. Huang et al. (2015). Magnetostratigraphy of the Jurassic in Lufeng, central Yunnan.
  3. Weems et al. (2015). Synthesis and revision of the lithostratigraphic groups and formations in the Upper Permian? – Lower Jurassic Newark Supergroup of eastern North America.
  4. Sciscio et al. (2017). Magnetostratigraphy across the Triassic-Jurassic boundary in the main Karoo basin.
  5. Dal Sasso et al. (2018). The oldest ceratosaurian (Dinosauria: Theropoda), from the Lower Jurassic of Italy, sheds light on the evolution of the three-fingered hand of birds.
  6. Viglietti et al. (2018). Stratigraphy of the Vulcanodon type locality and its implications for regional correlations within the Karoo Supergroup.
  7. Pol et al. (2020). Extinction of herbivorous dinosaurs linked to Early Jurassic global warming event.
  8. Pol et al. (2021). Earliest evidence of herd living and age segregation amongst dinosaurs.

Mid–Late Jurassic

  1. Rauhut & López-Arbarello (2009). Considerations on the age of the Tiouaren Formation (Iullemeden Basin, Niger, Africa): Implications for Gondwanan Mesozoic terrestral vertebrate faunas.
  2. Liu et al. (2012). Timing of the earliest known feathered dinosaurs and transitional pterosaurs older than the Jehol biota.
  3. Cúneo et al. (2013). High-precision U-Pb chronology and a new chronostratigraphy for the Cañadón Asfalto Basin, Chubut, central Patagonia: Implications for terrestrial faunal and floral evolution in Jurassic.
  4. Wang et al. (2018). Age of Jurassic basal sauropods in Sichuan, China.
  5. Cincotta et al. (2019). The rise of feathered dinosaurs: Kulindadromeus zabaikalicus, the oldest dinosaur with ‘feather-like’ structures.

Early Cretaceous

  1. Xu & Li (2015). Middle-Late Mesozoic sedimentary provenances of the Luxi and Jiaolai areas: Implications for tectonic evolution of the North China Block.
  2. McPhee et al. (2016). High diversity in the sauropod dinosaur fauna of the Lower Cretaceous Kirkwood Formation of South Africa: Implications for the Jurassic–Cretaceous transition.
  3. Joeckel et al. (2020). Chronostratigraphy and terrestrial palaeoclimatology of Berriasian–Hauterivian strata of the Cedar Mountain Formation, Utah, USA.
  4. Tucker et al. (2022). Age, depositional history, and paleoclimatic setting of the Early Cretaceous dinosaur assemblages from the Sao Khua Formation (Khorat Group), Thailand.