“April” the Tenontosaurus Dinosaur Fossil on Display

By |2023-05-28T06:52:42+01:00May 20th, 2023|Dinosaur Fans, Main Page, Photos/Pictures of Fossils|0 Comments

Everything Dinosaur took a break from picking and packing orders to visit the recently refurbished Manchester Museum. One of the new exhibits is “April” the Tenontosaurus dinosaur fossil. The display includes actual fossil bones of a Tenontosaurus, and the exhibit depicts this ornithischian dinosaur as a quadruped.

Tenontosaurus dinosaur fossil on display at the Manchester Museum.
“April” the Tenontosaurus on display at the Manchester Museum. Picture credit: Everything Dinosaur.

Picture credit: Everything Dinosaur

An Important Dinosaur Fossil Specimen

The fossils were discovered on private land in Montana, USA back in 1994 and acquired by the University of Manchester in 1999. The fossils (specimen number MANCH LL.12275) represent one of the best-preserved and most complete Tenontosaurus tilletti known to science. The specimen was originally displayed as a biped. The dinosaur was posed rearing up on its hind legs. During the conservation work to prepare the fossils for display, researchers demonstrated that this dinosaur spent most of its time walking on all fours.

It was named “April” after the wife of Barry James who originally prepared this stunning fossil dinosaur for exhibition.

CollectA Tenontosaurus model.
The CollectA Age of Dinosaurs Tenontosaurus model.

The picture (above) shows a CollectA Tenontosaurus dinosaur model. To view the range of CollectA not-to-scale prehistoric animal models: CollectA Prehistoric Life Models.


Gastroliths (stomach stones) were found in the body cavity of this dinosaur. Some types of dinosaur swallowed stones to help them grind up tough plants and aid digestion. These stones were held in a gizzard and helped to break down plant-material and assisted in the extraction of nutrients.

Only a handful of examples of gastroliths being associated with ornithopods have been reported. “April” the Tenontosaurus is the largest ornithopod dinosaur known to science associated with gastroliths.

To read about recent research on this important iguanodontian specimen: “April” the Tenontosaurus Reveals Her Secrets.

Tenontosaurus Dinosaur Fossil

“April” the Tenontosaurus dinosaur fossil has been granted her own special display area. There are plenty of information panels informing visitors about the dinosaur and highlighting important areas of research. The gastroliths are on display too. It is only when visitors get close to the fossils that they can appreciate the impressive length of the dinosaur’s tail.

Whilst the dinosaur might be nicknamed “April”, Everything Dinosaur team members are uncertain as to whether there has been any research to identify whether the bones do indeed represent a female.

A Tenontosaurus dinosaur fossil on display.
The length of the tail of Tenontosaurus can be appreciated. The Tenontosaurus known as “April” exhibited at the Manchester Museum. Picture credit: Everything Dinosaur.

Picture credit: Everything Dinosaur

A spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur praised the Manchester Museum for its excellent Tenontosaurus dinosaur fossil display and commented on the friendliness of the staff.

Visit Everything Dinosaur’s award-winning website: Everything Dinosaur.