The Eoraptor was a small dinosaur, about the size of a Beagle. It was discovered in Western Gondwana, what is now Northwestern Argentina, South America, in 1991. The find was made by, University of San Juan, paleontologist Ricardo Martínez.
He saw, what looked like teeth in a rock and upon further examination discovered the whole skull was in there. Eoraptor lunensis was coined in 1993, by Paul Sereno, University of Chicago and a National Geographic “explorer-in-residence”.
The name is derived from the Greek word eós meaning ‘dawn’, meaning near the first, and the Latin word raptor meaning ‘plunderer’, for its presumed carnivorous nature and its grasping hand.
The specific name lunensis is derived from the Latin words luna (‘moon’) and the suffix -ensis (‘inhabitant’), a reference to its place of discovery: the Valle de la Luna (‘Valley of the Moon’), so named for its arid, otherworldly appearance. The type species Eoraptor lunensis means ‘dawn plunderer from the Valley of the Moon’.
It lived 231 to 228 million years ago, during the late Triassic period. Eoraptor stood about a foot high and was three feet long, hollow bones made it lightweight. It was small, fast, 20-25 pound dinosaur.
With it’s variety of different teeth, it is believed to have been omnivorous. It would eat plants like such as horsetails and mosses, but could hunt down its meat, like small animals and reptiles. It may have been a scavenger also, stealing from other dinosaurs.
It was thought to be the oldest dinosaur for years but Prosauropods were found in the late 1990s in Madagascar and tested to be 230 million years old. These ages are argued back and forth so who knows.