|Others||Stegosaurus (amongst some fans)|
|Binomen||Unknown, though likely belong to Family Stegosauridae|
|Average height||16-20 feet long|
|Place of origin||Earth|
|Locomotion||Movement using four legs|
|Behind the Scenes|
An Atercurisaurus (Dark Spear Lizard) is a stegosaurid dinosaur that lived in the jungles of Skull Island.
As with all other Skull Island inhabitants, they went extinct in the early 20th century when the island sunk beneath the waves.
The last of their kind. Skull Island's small population of surviving Stegosaur descendants clung to existence in ferny valleys deep in the interior of the island. Impressively armored with a sudden hide, tall dorsal plates, and lethal abdominal and tail spikes, Atercurisaurus was not an easy lunch for predators, but competition with more successful herbivores on the island was causing their numbers to dwindle. Aterucurisaurus had a slow metabolism, necessitating almost constant grazing.
Overspecialization was the bane of the species. Aterucirsaurs ate only a handful of ferns, all of them rare due to competition from modern plants. Having to spend time hunting out this rare food - only to have to share it with other, generalist grazers - would almost certainly have led to eventual extinction of these remarkable plated dinosaurs, had the destruction of the island not occurred. Small herds of around a dozen females with young were led by matriarchs, with satellite bachelor bulls who were never far away. In the breeding season, bulls would take turns approaching the herd and displaying, hoping to win the approval of the matriarch and her followers. If accepted, he would be allowed to temporarily join the herd, gaining access to the cows for a few short days.
Atercurisaurus was a noisy species, producing a range of sounds, from squeals and grunts to deep gizzard rumbles. Specific sounds had different meanings, reassuring murmurs, made while eating, seemed to impart an "all is well" signal to other members of the loosely dispersed herd as they grazed. Begging squeaks from youngsters stimulated parents to disgorge their meals, while a similar sound produced by a low ranking adult conveyed submission before the matriarch. Several bellows, each specific to a particular threat, alerted the group to danger, the adults reacting accordingly to protect their young.