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Balaur is a genus of theropod dinosaur that lived in Romania during the late Cretaceous period. It is a unique dinosaur that had double sickle-shaped claws on each foot, sharp teeth, and a long tail. The name Balaur comes from the Romanian word for dragon, which is fitting considering the creature’s fierce appearance.

In Romanian folklore, a balaur is a type of many-headed dragon or monstrous serpent that is sometimes said to be equipped with wings. The number of heads is usually around three, but they can also have seven or even twelve heads according to some legends. The balaur in folktales is typically portrayed as evil, demanding, or abducting young people. It is interesting to note the similarities between the folklore creature and the dinosaur species that share the same name.

Recent research suggests that Balaur may have been a secondarily flightless bird, rather than a dromaeosaurid as previously thought. Its anatomy and features are more similar to Avialae, the bird lineage, than to dromaeosaurids. This enigmatic and wonderful animal continues to fascinate researchers and the public alike, and its discovery has shed new light on the evolution of theropod dinosaurs.

Mythological Origins

Cultural Significance

The Balaur is a mythical creature that has significant cultural importance in Romanian folklore. According to legends, the Balaur is a many-headed dragon or serpent that is often depicted as being equipped with wings. The number of heads on a Balaur can vary between three and twelve, depending on the legend. The Balaur is often associated with chaos and destruction, and is said to be a fierce and powerful creature that is difficult to defeat.

Historical References

The Balaur has been referenced in historical texts and mythology for centuries. In some legends, the Balaur is said to be a transformed human who has been cursed by the gods. In other legends, the Balaur is said to be a guardian of treasure or a powerful protector of the land. The Balaur has also been referenced in literature and art, with many artists and writers drawing inspiration from the creature’s fearsome appearance and legendary status.

In Romanian mythology, the Balaur is often depicted as a formidable opponent that is difficult to defeat. Despite its fearsome reputation, the Balaur is also seen as a symbol of strength and resilience, and is often associated with the natural world and the power of the elements. Whether viewed as a terrifying monster or a powerful symbol of nature, the Balaur remains an important part of Romanian culture and mythology.

Physical Description

Wings and Limbs

Balaur was a theropod dinosaur that lived during the Late Cretaceous period. It was a carnivorous predator that had two wings, which were not large enough to enable it to fly. The wings were used for balance and stability while hunting prey. Balaur had two legs that ended in sharp claws, which were used to catch and kill its prey. The dinosaur had a unique foot structure, with two toes pointing forward and two toes pointing backward. This made it an efficient runner and helped it to maintain balance while hunting.

Size and Appearance

Balaur was a stocky dinosaur that weighed around 500 pounds and was about 6 feet long. The dinosaur had a large head with sharp teeth that were used to tear flesh. It had a long tail that was used for balance while running. Balaur had feathers covering its body, which were used for insulation and display purposes. These feathers were not used for flight, as the wings were too small for that purpose.

Overall, Balaur was a fascinating dinosaur with unique physical features that helped it to survive and thrive during the Late Cretaceous period. Its wings and limbs were adapted for hunting and running, while its size and appearance made it a formidable predator.

Habitat and Ecology

Geographical Distribution

Balaur is believed to have lived in what is now modern-day Romania during the Late Cretaceous period, approximately 70 million years ago. The species was discovered on the island of Hațeg, which was part of the European archipelago at the time. Due to its isolated location, the island had a unique ecosystem and was home to numerous endemic species, including Balaur.

Dietary Habits

Balaur was a carnivorous dinosaur, and it is believed to have primarily fed on small animals such as lizards, mammals, and birds. Its sharp, serrated teeth suggest that it was capable of tearing flesh and crushing bones. Balaur likely hunted both on land and in the water, as it had strong legs and was able to swim.

Balaur’s habitat was a dense forest, where it likely used its sharp claws and strong legs to navigate through the underbrush in pursuit of prey. It is also believed that Balaur was a social animal, as multiple specimens have been found in close proximity to one another.

Balaur in Popular Culture

Literature and Art

The Balaur has long been a popular subject in Romanian folklore and mythology. It has been depicted in various forms of literature and art, including paintings, sculptures, and even tapestries. One of the most famous depictions of the Balaur is in the Romanian epic poem “Miorița”, where it is described as a three-headed dragon. The Balaur has also been featured in various works of modern fiction, including fantasy novels and role-playing games.

Film and Television

The Balaur has also made appearances in film and television. In the 2017 Romanian film “Moromete Family: On the Edge of Time”, the Balaur is depicted as a fearsome dragon that terrorizes the countryside. In the popular video game series “The Witcher”, the Balaur is featured as a powerful monster that players must defeat in order to progress through the game. The Balaur has also been referenced in various other films, TV shows, and video games, cementing its place in popular culture.

Scientific Perspective

Paleontological Discoveries

Balaur bondoc is a unique dinosaur species that was discovered in Romania by Zoltán Csiki and his team of paleontologists. The discovery of this dinosaur species has been significant in the field of paleontology, as it has provided new insights into the evolution of dinosaurs. The fossils of Balaur bondoc were found in Romanian geological deposits representing an ancient island which existed during the late Cretaceous period. The discovery of this dinosaur has helped scientists to better understand the diversity of the dinosaur kingdom during the Cretaceous period.

Comparative Anatomy

Balaur bondoc is a flightless dinosaur that belongs to the family Dromaeosauridae. The dinosaur had two large, sickle-shaped claws on each foot, which were used for hunting. The dinosaur was also unique in that it had two functional legs, unlike most other flightless birds, which have only one functional leg. The pelvis of Balaur bondoc was also unique, as it had bowed-out pubic bones, which were different from the condition in birds and other dromaeosaurids. The comparative anatomy of Balaur bondoc has helped scientists to better understand the evolution of dinosaurs and the diversity of the dinosaur kingdom during the Cretaceous period.

Conservation Status

Balaur is a genus of extinct flightless birds that lived during the Late Cretaceous period. As an extinct species, balaur is not currently listed on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. However, the conservation status of balaur is still of great concern to paleontologists and scientists who study extinct species.

The limited fossil record of balaur makes it difficult to determine the exact conservation status of the species. However, based on the available evidence, it is believed that balaur was a rare and specialized species that was likely vulnerable to environmental changes and predation.

To ensure the protection of balaur and other extinct species, paleontologists and scientists advocate for the continued exploration and study of fossil records. This includes the preservation of existing fossils and the discovery of new ones. Additionally, education and public outreach are important tools for raising awareness about the importance of extinct species and the need to protect them.

Public Perception and Folklore

Balaur is a mythical creature that has captured the imagination of many people. In Romanian folklore, it is often depicted as a many-headed dragon or monstrous serpent, sometimes said to be equipped with wings. The number of heads is usually around three, but they can also have seven heads or even twelve heads according to some legends.

The public perception of Balaur varies depending on the region and culture. Some people view it as a fearsome creature that represents chaos and destruction, while others see it as a symbol of strength and power. In some areas, Balaur is believed to be a protector of the land, while in others it is seen as a malevolent force that brings harm to those who cross its path.

Despite the differences in perception, Balaur remains a popular figure in folklore and mythology. Many stories and legends have been passed down through generations, each with its own unique interpretation of this fascinating creature. Whether seen as a friend or foe, Balaur continues to captivate the imagination of people around the world.