Shunosaurus Click to enlarge image
Shunosaurus Image: James Reece
© Australian Museum

Fast Facts

  • Classification
  • Feeding Habits


Shunosaurus lii was a slow-moving herbivorous dinosaur which lived around 159 million years ago and probably had a lifespan of over 120 years.


Shunosaurus lii had:

  • ladle-shaped teeth that helped it to crop the leaves of low-growing plants;
  • a bony, clubbed tail which it used for defence.

Fossils of Shunosaurus have been found with gastroliths (small stones which the dinosaur swallowed) in the stomach to help break up plant tissues.

Fossils description

Shunosaurus lii was discovered in Sichuan, which was known as Shu in ancient times. The species name lii was named after Li Bing, who constructed the Dujiangyan Irrigation System in Sichuan.

Evolutionary relationships

Shunosaurus lii was a sauropod belonging to the family Cetiosauridae. This large family occurred worldwide from the Early Jurassic to Late Cretaceous.

Tyrannosaurs - Meet the Family

This summer the world’s most feared dinosaur, Tyrannosaurus rex, comes crashing out the Cretaceous and into the new blockbuster gallery at the Australian Museum. But watch out, the 13-metre-long, saw-toothed predator isn’t coming alone – the whole tyrannosaur clan will be roaring to meet you.

Discover the exhibition