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26 09, 2020

Rebor “Bites the Dust” and New Fossil Skulls

By | September 26th, 2020|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur News and Updates, Everything Dinosaur Newsletters, Everything Dinosaur Products, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products, Press Releases|0 Comments

Rebor “Bites the Dust” and Oddities Fossil Studies Skulls

Everything Dinosaur despatched a special newsletter to its subscribers earlier this month announcing the arrival of the two T. rex carcasses in the Rebor “Bites the Dust” model line.  In addition, the newsletter announced that pre-orders were being taken for the exciting Rebor Oddities Fossil Studies Skulls (Wave 1).  All three, beautiful theropod skulls, Yutyrannus huali, Ceratosaurus dentisulcatus and Carnotaurus sastrei were available to pre-order from Everything Dinosaur at very special prices.

The offers don’t just stop there, the newsletter included a special offer on the duo of dead dinosaurs too!

The Rebor “Bites the Dust” Tyrannosaur Carcasses (Plain and Jungle)

Rebor T. rex carcasses "Bites the Dust" plain and jungle colour variants.

The Rebor T. rex carcasses “Bites the Dust” provide the headlines for the latest Everything Dinosaur customer newsletter.  Buy the pair at a special discounted price courtesy of Everything Dinosaur.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

T. rex Didn’t Always Win!

The Rebor “Bites the Dust” figures are available in two colour schemes.  Firstly, there is a brown dominated model called “plain”, there is a second model “jungle” with more of a greenish hue.  These carefully constructed carcasses are in 1:35 scale and reflect the fact that tyrannosaurs like most predatory dinosaurs had very tough, short lives.  Most dinosaurs did not make it to adulthood and for tyrannosaurs such as T. rex, life at the top of the food chain was particularly hard.  It was a question of kill or be killed, not only did these theropods have to battle horned dinosaurs and hadrosaurs, they also had to contend with attacks from their own kind as well.  The fossil record provides evidence of tyrannosaurs biting other tyrannosaurs, for example, in 2010, a paper was published in PLOS One entitled “Cannibalism in Tyrannosaurus rex”.  The eminent authors, Longrich, Horner, Erickson and Currie identified four T. rex specimens that preserved potential T. rex bites on their bones.

The Two T. rex Bites the Dust Carcass Models (Plain and Jungle)

The two Rebor "Bites the Dust" T. rex carcasses.

The Rebor T. rex carcass plain (left) and the Rebor T. rex carcass jungle (right) two beautiful 1:35 scale replicas of a deceased Tyrannosaurus rex.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The scientists concluded that Tyrannosaurus rex routinely hunting full-grown members of its own species was unlikely, however, it is possible that intraspecific combat led to casualties, with the dead becoming a convenient source of food for the victorious T. rex.  These figures show bite marks from another very large predator, since T. rex is the only enormous terrestrial carnivore known from the latest Upper Cretaceous deposits of North America, it can be inferred that these two Rebor models show the result of an intraspecific combat.

Rebor Oddities Fossil Studies Skulls

The newsletter also provided subscribers with details of the forthcoming Rebor Oddities Fossil Studies skulls, a set of three amazing theropod skulls, namely, C. sastrei, Y. huali and C. dentisulcatus.  These museum quality replicas are available to pre-order from Everything Dinosaur.

The Rebor Ceratosaurus dentisulcatus and Yutyrannus huali Fossil Skulls

The Rebor Oddities Fossil Skulls (Ceratosaurus and Yutyrannus).

The Rebor Oddities Fossil Skull Ceratosaurus dentisulcatus (left) with the Rebor Oddities Fossil Skull Yutyrannus huali.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Buy All Three at a Discount!

The three fossil skulls, regarded as the first wave in an intended series of skull models are likely to be in stock at Everything Dinosaur in November (2020).  Customers have the opportunity to pre-order the replicas and to take advantage of a special offer to purchase all three Rebor Oddities Fossil Studies models.

A Trio of Amazing Fossil Skulls

Rebor Oddities Fossil Studies skulls.

The Rebor Oddities Fossil Studies Carnotaurus sastrei model (left) and the opportunity to pre-order all three skulls at a special discounted price (right).

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Rebor “Bites the Dust” T. rex carcasses and the pre-order options for the fossil skulls can be found here: Rebor Models and Figures.

To subscribe to Everything Dinosaur’s newsletter, simply email the company and request a subscription: Email Everything Dinosaur to Subscribe to Newsletters.

25 09, 2020

New Rebor Titanoboa Models Ready to Pre-order

By | September 25th, 2020|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur News and Updates, Everything Dinosaur Products, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products, Press Releases|0 Comments

New Rebor Titanoboa Models Ready to Pre-order

The stunning Rebor Titanoboa Museum Class Maquette Monty Resurgent and the Rebor Titanoboa Museum Class Maquette Brian Diccus are available to pre-order at Everything Dinosaur.  These amazing models of a Titanoboa (T. cerrejonensis) swallowing a crocodilian are going into production in the next few months and both replicas are expected in stock at Everything Dinosaur sometime around quarter two of 2021.

The New for 2021 Rebor Titanoboa Museum Class Maquette Monty Resurgent Figure

Rebor Titanoboa Museum Class Maquette Monty Resurgent.

The Rebor Titanoboa Museum Class Maquette Monty Resurgent.  A stunning replica of the largest snake known to science – Titanoboa cerrejonensis complete with its unfortunate crocodilian victim which is in the process of being swallowed whole.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Hot on the Heels of Monty

This year (2020), saw the release of the limited edition Rebor Titanoboa figure “Monty”, this beautiful replica of the largest snake described to date, sold out very quickly.  Aware of how popular this prehistoric animal is Rebor have plans to introduce two more Titanoboa replicas.  Each one “Monty Resurgent” and “Brian Diccus”, will have a single production run and they are going to be made in a few months’ time.  Customers of Everything Dinosaur have the chance to secure their figures early.

The New for 2021 Rebor Titanoboa Museum Class Maquette Brian Diccus Replica

Rebor Titanoboa Museum Class Maquette Brian Diccus.

The Rebor Titanoboa Museum Class Maquette Brian Diccus.  Each model has a different colour scheme and this extends to the crocodilian prey as well with the “Monty” Titanoboa having a brown crocodilian victim, whilst Brian Diccus has a green crocodilian prey item.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Pre-order Available from Everything Dinosaur

Both colour variants are available for pre-order.  Customers can choose which figure they want and then add it to their shopping cart and go through the checkout process as per usual.  However, with Everything Dinosaur, there are no fees to pay, no upfront costs, no surcharges, no deposit required.

Customers also need to note that due to the complexity of the pre-order checkout process, an order may contain only a single pre-order Titanoboa product, and no other products, pre-order or otherwise.  If a customer adds a pre-order product to a non-empty cart, the cart will be automatically emptied and the pre-order product will be added. This means that if you want both Titanoboa colour variants, customers will have to place two pre-orders (one for each prehistoric snake figure).

The Rebor Titanoboa Museum Class Maquette Brian Diccus

Rebor Titanoboa Museum Class Maquette Brian Diccus.

The Rebor Titanoboa Museum Class Maquette Brian Diccus.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

A spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur commented:

“These are two beautifully crafted figures.  Each replica shows the anterior portions of the giant snake emerging out of the water as it gulps down its unfortunate victim.  We look forward to bringing these products into our warehouse sometime around the early summer of 2021.”

Swallowed Whole the Rebor Monty Resurgent Titanoboa Makes Short Work of a Large Crocodile

Rebor Titanoboa Museum Class Maquette Monty Resurgent.

The Rebor Titanoboa Museum Class Maquette Monty Resurgent.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The two Rebor Titanoboa figures can be found on this part of Everything Dinosaur’s website: Rebor Models and Figures.

24 09, 2020

“Dung and Dusted” – A Scatological Approach to Archaeology

By | September 24th, 2020|Adobe CS5, Main Page, Photos|0 Comments

Did Ancient Potters use Sheep Dung to Fire their Clay Pots?

A project is underway to provide “hands-on” information about how ancient Britons could have fired clay pots before the invention of kiln technology.  By undertaking practical experiments trying different sorts of fuel to fire clay vessels, archaeologists hope to find out more about the way our ancestors lived their lives.

A new study, with the catchy title “Dung and Dusted”, aims to do just that, specifically by examining whether sheep dung could have been used to fire pots before the widespread use of kilns.  Dr Michael Copper, from the School of Archaeological and Forensic Sciences in the Faculty of Life Sciences (University of Bradford), hopes that these practical experiments will help researchers to gain a better understanding of how different, ancient communities were organised.

Dr Mike Copper – Part of the “Dung and Dusted” Project

Dr Mike Copper who will be part of the "Dung and Dusted" project.

Dr Mike Copper on location in Orkney.

Picture Credit: University of Bradford

Dr Copper explained:

“Despite considerable advances in our knowledge of how ancient pots were made and used, archaeologists still know remarkably little about how prehistoric pottery was fired before the introduction of the potter’s kiln, including what fuels were used.  One abundant and freely available fuel source in prehistory would have been animal dung.  Could it then have been the case that dried dung was used to fire pottery in prehistoric Britain and Ireland?”

A Six-month Project

The research project is funded by the Gerda Henkel Foundation and is planned to last around six months.  A series of firings of hand-built replica prehistoric pots using sheep dung and other fuels are planned.  The vessels and firing sites will then be analysed to see whether residues left behind can be matched to ancient pottery or can be used to help archaeologists identify dung firing evidence at archaeological digs.

Dr Copper, a specialist in prehistoric pottery and ancient ceramic technology, added:

“In terms of why it is significant, experimental projects such as this provide an important way for archaeologists to understand how prehistoric people went about tasks such as pot firing using materials and techniques with which we are no longer familiar.  Pottery is one of the most important finds made on archaeological excavations.  Its varied forms help us to date sites and analysis of burnt food residues can tell us about what the inhabitants ate.  If we find that animal dung was used to fire the pots then it could be that people were managing animals with one eye on using dung as a product.”

Dr Mike Copper Examining an Ancient Clay Pot

Dr Mike Cooper examines a prehistoric clay pot.

Dr Mike Copper, inspecting a prehistoric clay pot.

Picture Credit: University of Bradford

An Experimental Approach to Archaeology

The researchers, which include Dr Cathy Batt, an expert in magnetic studies with extensive experience of investigating ancient firing sites and Dr Gregg Griffin, a recent PhD graduate who looked at ways to identify fuels from residues discovered on archaeological excavations, hope to gain an understanding of how ancient societies were organised with pot-making and firing a central part of the community.  Variations in the use of technology, such as choice of fuel for pottery making, are passed down from one generation to another.  This can provide archaeologists with a lot of additional information about how a community organised itself.

We look forward to hearing more as this project concludes and we wonder whether the sheep will be cited in the subsequent paper as contributors…

Everything Dinosaur acknowledges the assistance of a press release from the University of Bradford in the compilation of this article.

21 09, 2020

Euparkeria Steps Out

By | September 21st, 2020|Dinosaur Fans, Main Page, Palaeontological articles, Photos/Pictures of Fossils|0 Comments

Euparkeria Study Provides Important Step in Evolution of Archosaur Posture

Fossils of the stem-archosaur Euparkeria (pronounced Yoo-park-air-ree-ah), have been studied by scientists from the University of Bristol and the Royal Veterinary College in a bid to better understand the evolution of different gaits and locomotion within archosaurs.  Three-dimensional modelling based on high resolution CT scans of the hindlimb of the small, agile Euparkeria (E. capensis), has revealed that it had a “mosaic” of functions associated with locomotion.

Euparkeria, which roamed southern Africa around 245 million years ago, is believed to be a close relative of the last common ancestor of both crocodilians and the dinosaur/bird branch of the Archosauria family tree, as such, a study of its fossil bones can provide important insights into the evolution of the archosaurs.

A Life Reconstruction of Euparkeria capensis

Euparkeria life reconstruction

A life reconstruction of the basal archosauriform Euparkeria (E. capensis).  As the hindlimbs are longer than the front legs, many researchers believe that Euparkeria was capable of adopting a bipedal stance when it wanted to (facultative biped).

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

This little reptile, that was formerly named and described in 1913, has recently been at the centre of another study which examined skull fossil material originally reported upon in 1965, but with the advance of scanning technology, scientists were able to provide much more information about the structure of Euparkeria’s skull: Little Euparkeria Steps into the Spotlight.

Euparkeria Provides Insight

Birds have an upright, erect bipedal posture, whilst extant crocodilians are quadrupedal and have a sprawling gait.  The ancestor of the birds and crocodiles once shared a common mode of locomotion and Euparkeria can provide vital information helping scientists to work out how these differences came about.

Life Reconstruction of Euparkeria capensis

Euparkeria life reconstruction.

A life reconstruction of Euparkeria highlighting the hip and ankle that were the focus of the study.  Note in this illustration the archosaur has been given a more sprawling, quadrupedal posture when compared to the first illustration of Euparkeria on this post.

Picture Credit: Oliver Demuth

Writing in the academic journal “Scientific Reports”, the researchers which included John Hutchinson, Professor of Evolutionary Biomechanics at the Royal Veterinary College, explained how they reconstructed the hip structure of Euparkeria based on CT scans.  The complex and very detailed computer models these scans produced demonstrated that Euparkeria had a distinctive bony rim on the pelvis, called a supra-acetabular rim, covering the top of the hip joint.  This anatomical feature had only previously been found in later archosaurs on the crocodilian branch of the Archosauria.  As a result, a more erect posture had been inferred for these extinct crocodiles.  The supra-acetabular rim permitted the pelvis to cover the top of the femur (thigh bone) and support the body with the limbs in a more columnar arrangement – this type of joint is referred to as “pillar-erect”.

Identifying the Supra-acetabular Rim on the Hip Bone

Euparkeria hip bones.

The black arrow points to the supra-acetabular rim.  This projection of the hip bone above the hip joint permitted the tucking of the limbs under the body to support the body in a columnar arrangement.  This is so far the earliest occurrence of this structure in the archosaur family tree.

Picture Credit: Demuth et al (Scientific Reports)

Euparkeria is the oldest known reptile that possessed such a joint, this raises the intriguing question as to whether it had a more erect dinosaur/bird-like posture rather than the more sprawling posture as seen in modern crocodilians.

Testing How the Hindlimbs Could Move

Computer simulations were created to test the range of movement in the hindlimbs.  The team estimated how far the femur could have rotated until it collided with the hip bones.  The computer models also examined how the ankle joint functioned as well.  The simulations suggested that while the femur could have been held in an erect posture, the foot could not have been placed steadily on the ground due to the way the foot rotates around the ankle joint, implying a more sprawling posture.  However, the supra-acetabular rim covering the hip joint restricted the movement of the thigh bone in a way that is not seen in any living tetrapod with a sprawling gait, this indicates that Euparkeria had a more upright posture.

Examining Three-dimensional Models of the Euparkeria Ankle to Assess Function

Modelling the ankle structure of Euparkeria.

The oblique ankle joint did not allow Euparkeria to assume a fully upright posture as the foot also turns medially when the ankle joint is extended.  An ankle joint allowing a more upright posture evolved later independent from the hip structure.

Picture Credit: Demuth et al (Scientific Reports)

The researchers conclude that Euparkeria possessed a “mosaic” of locomotor functions.  It is the earliest reptile known with this peculiar hip anatomy and an ankle joint allowing a more erect posture did evolve in later Triassic archosaurs.

Professor Hutchinson stated:

“The mosaic of structures present in Euparkeria, then, can be seen as a central stepping-stone in the evolution of locomotion in archosaurs.”

The scientific paper: “3D hindlimb joint mobility of the stem-archosaur Euparkeria capensis with implications for the postural evolution within the Archosauria” by Oliver E. Demuth, Emily J. Rayfield and John R. Hutchinson published in Scientific Reports.

19 09, 2020

Spinosaurus – Very Much at Home in the River

By | September 19th, 2020|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal News Stories, Dinosaur Fans, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products, Photos/Pictures of Fossils|0 Comments

Spinosaurus A River Monster

An examination of more than a thousand fossil dinosaur teeth collected from an ancient Cretaceous-aged riverbed in Morocco suggests that the giant theropod Spinosaurus was very much at home in an aquatic environment.  This new study, conducted by researchers from the University of Portsmouth, lends further support to the idea that Spinosaurus spent a great deal of time in water, that this enormous theropod, arguably one of the largest of all the carnivorous dinosaurs was a “river monster”.

More Evidence Suggests that Spinosaurus was an Aquatic Animal

Swimming Spinosaurus (2020)

View of the crocodile-like snout of Spinosaurus and the new interpretation of the tail.  This new paper supports the earlier hypothesis that Spinosaurus aegyptiacus was an aquatic animal.

Picture Credit: Davide Bonadonna/National Geographic

This new study builds on a research paper published in the journal “Nature”, earlier this year, which also involved co-author Professor David Martill (University of Portsmouth).  The May (2020) paper focused on the examination of Spinosaurus aegyptiacus caudal vertebrae, it was concluded that Spinosaurus had a wide, flexible, fin-like tail, ideal for helping the dinosaur to propel itself through the water.

To read more about the Spinosaurus tail bones: Spinosaurus – The River Monster.

A Study of Fossil Teeth from the Kem Kem Formation

Writing in the academic journal “Cretaceous Research”, the scientists conclude that Spinosaurus was a water-dwelling dinosaur, a giant “river monster”.

A total of 1,200 broken teeth were collected from the site of an ancient riverbed in the Kem Kem Formation of Morocco.  Each tooth was carefully analysed and documented and it was discovered that Spinosaurus teeth made up the majority of the fossil specimens.

Professor David Martill, Professor of Palaeobiology at the University of Portsmouth explained:

“From this research we are able to confirm this location as the place where this gigantic dinosaur not only lived but also died.  The results are fully consistent with the idea of a truly water-dwelling, “river monster”.”

Examples of Typical Fossils from the Kem Kem Formation (Morocco)

Fossil remains (Kem Kem beds).

Assorted vertebrate fossil remains from the Kem Kem beds of Morocco.  The elongated conical tooth (top left) and the large, slender conical tooth which is partially obscured (far left) are likely to be spinosaurid.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Around forty-five percent of all the teeth fossils were ascribed to Spinosaurus.

Professor Martill added:

“The huge number of teeth we collected in the prehistoric riverbed reveals that Spinosaurus was there in huge numbers, accounting for 45 per cent of the total dental remains.  We know of no other location where such a mass of dinosaur teeth have been found in bone-bearing rock.  The enhanced abundance of Spinosaurus teeth, relative to other dinosaurs, is a reflection of their aquatic lifestyle.  An animal living much of its life in water is much more likely to contribute teeth to the river deposit than those dinosaurs that perhaps only visited the river for drinking and feeding along its banks.”

Professor Martill worked alongside two students (Aaron Quigley and Thomas Beevor), studying for the Masters Degree in Palaeontology at the university.

Thomas Beevor commented:

“The Kem Kem riverbeds are an amazing source of Spinosaurus remains.  They also preserve the remains of many other Cretaceous creatures including sawfish, coelacanths, crocodiles, flying reptiles and other land-living dinosaurs.  With such an abundance of Spinosaurus teeth, it is highly likely that this animal was living mostly within the river rather than along its banks.”

Identifying Spinosaurus Teeth

Sorting fossil teeth can be quite a challenging process.  However, enough is known about the Kem Kem biota to enable most of the teeth remains to be assigned to a genus or at least at the family level.  Numerous theropod dinosaurs are known from this geological formation, but spinosaurid teeth are distinctive.  They are conical, lack serrations and are not recurved.  Aaron Quigley explained that the teeth of Spinosaurus have a distinct surface.  They have a smooth, round cross-section which glints when held up to the light.

A Model of Spinosaurus Introduced in 2019 (Papo Spinosaurus)

Papo Limited Edition Spinosaurus Model.

The Papo Limited Edition Spinosaurus dinosaur model (2019).  Depicting Spinosaurus as an aquatic animal with deep, fin-like tail.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Sigilmassasaurus Confusion

Whilst the prevalence of spinosaurid teeth in the sample might indicate that spinosaurids spent more time in close proximity to the ancient river than other dinosaurs, this research does not represent definitive proof that Spinosaurus was aquatic.  It lends weight to the idea.  A large amount of spinosaurid teeth associated with the site, could be a result of some form of depositional bias or general taphonomy.  In addition, the paucity of Spinosaurus remains from the Kem Kem Formation has led to controversy over the classification of fossil bones.  For example, in 1996 a second genus of spinosaurid was named and described from fossilised cervical vertebrae found close to the Tafilalt Oasis in eastern Morocco.  This dinosaur was named Sigilmassasaurus brevicollis (Russell), but its taxonomic validity remains in doubt.  Sigilmassasaurus may be a valid genus, if it is, then it was very closely related to Spinosaurus aegyptiacus.  Other scientists think that S. brevicollis is not a valid genus and a junior synonym of Spinosaurus.  It is possible that the teeth involved in this study could represent another type of spinosaurid, other than S. aegyptiacus.

Everything Dinosaur acknowledges the assistance of a media release from the University of Portsmouth in the compilation of this article.

18 09, 2020

Rebor T. rex Carcass “Bites the Dust” Pair Plain and Jungle

By | September 18th, 2020|Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur News and Updates, Everything Dinosaur Products, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products, Press Releases|0 Comments

Rebor T. rex Carcass “Bites the Dust” Pair Plain and Jungle

The Rebor T. rex carcass “Bites the Dust” models are in stock at Everything Dinosaur.  These two figures (jungle and plain colour variants), have arrived at our warehouse and team members have been busy contacting all those customers who asked to be emailed about the latest additions to our inventory and the Rebor range.

The Rebor Tyrannosaurus rex Carcass Model Plain Colour Variant “Bites the Dust”

Rebor T. rex Carcass Bites the Dust - Plain.

The Rebor Tyrannosaurus rex dinosaur model in 1:35 scale.  The Rebor T. rex carcass “Bites the Dust” – plain.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Tale of a Theropod Dinosaur that Met Its Demise

From the pathology recorded on the fossilised bones of this apex predator, palaeontologists are fairly certain that T. rex had a very tough life.  It was a question of kill or be killed and it has been suggested that tyrannosaurs were cannibalistic and that these dinosaurs had to cope with vicious intraspecific combats, essentially fights with other tyrannosaurs, possibly over hunting territories, mates or kills.  As hypercarnivores most likely specialising in the hunting of large prey animals such as hadrosaurs and ceratopsians, attacks could go wrong, with perhaps fatal consequences.  We congratulate Rebor for creating such carefully crafted figures.

The Rebor T. rex carcass is available in two colour variants, plain (see photograph above) and jungle (see below).   Each figure measures around 34 cm in length and depicts a dead Tyrannosaurus rex.  They will make really exciting additions to a dinosaur model collection and provide an opportunity for model makers to build some amazing prehistoric animal dioramas.

The Rebor Tyrannosaurus rex Carcass Model Jungle Colour Variant “Bites the Dust”

Rebor T. rex carcass - "Bites the Dust".

The Rebor T. rex carcass in the jungle colour scheme (Bites the Dust).

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Queen Motif Continues

Collectors of Rebor models will notice that the rock group Queen motif continues with the introduction of these two fine figures.  In the spring of 2019, Rebor introduced a pair of T. rex replicas under the title of “Killer Queen” a possible homage to a track and later a single from the British rock band’s “Sheer Heart Attack” album from the mid-1970s.  Queen released a single entitled “Another One Bites the Dust” in 1980, it was a worldwide hit, reaching number 7 in the UK singles chart and topping the U.S. Billboard Hot 100.  We think these two fabulous fatality figures will prove to be a big hit with model collectors and fans of Rebor too.

Everything Dinosaur is Offering the Pair at a Special Discounted Price (Whilst Stocks Last)

Two Rebor replicas. Buy the pair!

Buy the Pair – purchase the Rebor T. rex carcass “Bites the Dust” colour variants plain and jungle.  Everything Dinosaur customers can purchase the pair at a special discounted price (whilst stocks last).

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Rebor T. rex carcass “Bites the Dust” plain and colour variants can be found here: Rebor Models and Figures.

17 09, 2020

Carnian Pluvial Episode – Late Triassic Mass Extinction

By | September 17th, 2020|Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal News Stories, Dinosaur Fans, Geology, Main Page, Palaeontological articles|0 Comments

Getting to Grips with a Mass Extinction Event – Carnian Pluvial Episode

The fossil record of the Phanerozoic (the Eon of visible life), indicates that there were five major mass extinction events.  The fossil record marks huge and very rapid (at least in geological terms anyway), reductions in the diversity of life on a world-wide scale.  Our planet might well be going through a mass extinction event at the moment, but for one team of scientists their attention has been on the Late Triassic (Carnian faunal stage), plotting a time of extensive terrestrial and marine faunal turnover.  The researchers, which include scientists from Bristol University, the University of Ferrara (Italy), the University of Vienna and the China University of Geosciences in Wuhan Province, conclude that around 233 million years ago about a third of all marine genera disappeared.

Terrestrial Fauna in the Late Triassic – Did a Major Extinction Event Help to Trigger the Rise of the Dinosaurs

Late Triassic terrestrial fauna.

Life in the Late Triassic, an explosion in dinosaur diversity.  Did the Crocodylomorpha and the Dinosauria benefit from the Late Triassic Carnian Pluvial Episode?

Picture Credit:  Davide Bonadonna

Many types of land-living animal did no better.  The herbivorous rhynchosaurs and dicynodonts were greatly reduced in diversity during the Carnian, but intriguingly crocodylomorphs and those other archosaurs, the Dinosauria seem to have benefitted from the extinction of other types of tetrapod, with both the Crocodylomorpha and dinosaurs diversifying towards the end of the Carnian.  The scientists postulate that the rise of the dinosaurs to dominance might have been a direct consequence of the Carnian Pluvial Episode (CPE).

To read an earlier blog article that links the CPE with dinosaur diversification: Out with a Bang! In with a Bang! The story of the Dinosauria.

 A Time of Immense Global Environmental Change

The Carnian Pluvial Episode took place from around 234 to 232 million years ago.  There was a marked rise in rainfall (at least four episodes of increased rainfall have been deduced from sedimentary and palaeontological data).  The Earth got warmer and more humid.  This led to extensive environmental changes and the subsequent demise and then collapse of many ecological systems.  Writing in the academic journal “Science Advances”, the scientists throw their collective weight behind the theory that enormous volcanic eruptions in the Wrangellia Province of western Canada, that resulted in the deposition of vast amounts of basalt, were probably the cause of the global environmental changes.

Co-author of the paper Jacopo Dal Corso (China University of Geosciences), explained:

“The eruptions peaked in the Carnian.  I was studying the geochemical signature of the eruptions a few years ago and identified some massive effects on the atmosphere worldwide.  The eruptions were so huge, they pumped vast amounts of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide and there were spikes of global warming”.

This warming resulted in the increased humidity and higher levels of rainfall, a phenomenon first detected by geologists Mike Simms and Alastair Ruffell in the 1980s.  The climate change caused major biodiversity loss in the ocean and on land, but just after the extinction event new groups took over, forming more modern-like ecosystems.

Environmental and Geochemical Changes of the CPE

Environmental and geochemical changes associated with the Carnian Pluvial Event.

(A) Calculating the age of the CPE based on geochemical indicators and (B) Palaeogeography during the Carnian, the map showing where sedimentary and palaeontological data has been obtained documenting changes in environmental conditions.

Picture Credit: Jacopo Dal Corso et al/Science Advances

The environmental changes had a profound effect on life on our planet.  As well as a diversification of the dinosaurs, many other modern groups of animals and plants appeared at this time, including lizards and the first mammals.  When mapping the losses of marine fauna at the genus level, the team concluded that whilst the CPE was not as devastating as the either the end-Triassic or end-Cretaceous extinction events, some 33% of all marine genera died out.

A Comparison of Marine Faunal Turnover During Major Extinction Events

Plotting marine extinctions and faunal turnover over the Carnian Pluvial Event.

(A) Comparison of extinction rates of all marine genera during the CPE with those of major Phanerozoic mass extinction events.

Picture Credit: Jacopo Dal Corso et al/Science Advances

The Effect on Plant Life

The shifts in climate encouraged substantial changes in global flora too.  Many new types of plants emerged that were more suited to the humid climate.  Several modern fern families emerged and the Bennettitales (cycad-like plants), diversified.  Extensive coal deposits formed once again, the first substantial coal seams being produced since the Permian.  Conifers seem to have benefitted and the researchers, which include Professor Mike Benton (Bristol University), remark that the CPE provides the first major finds of amber in the fossil record.  As tree resin is usually produced when plants are under stress, this suggests that terrestrial ecosystems were in a state of flux during this period in Earth’s history.

Professor Benton stated:

“The new floras probably provided slim pickings for the surviving herbivorous reptiles.  I had noted a floral switch and ecological catastrophe among the herbivores back in 1983 when I completed my PhD.  We now know that dinosaurs originated some 20 million years before this event, but they remained quite rare and unimportant until the Carnian Pluvial Episode hit.  It was the sudden arid conditions after the humid episode that gave dinosaurs their chance.”

Terrestrial Extinctions and Originations During the Carnian (Late Triassic)

Mapping the major biological changes amongst plants, insects and vertebrates during the Carnian.

Plotting the major biological changes amongst plants, insects and vertebrates during the Carnian.  Trackmaker assemblages from the Southern Alps suggest a faunal turnover within the Archosauria with the dinosaurs replacing the crocodylomorphs as a significant component of terrestrial ecosystems.

Picture Credit: Jacopo Dal Corso et al/Science Advances

The researchers conclude that the CPE may not have been as significant as the big five Phanerozoic mass extinctions but it did have a dramatic impact on terrestrial and marine environments and helped to bring in a variety of new types of plants and animals, marking an important step towards the origins of the types of ecosystems we see around us today.

The scientific paper: “Extinction and dawn of the modern world in the Carnian (Late Triassic)” by Jacopo Dal Corso et al published in Science Advances.

16 09, 2020

CollectA Deluxe Lisowicia Video Review

By | September 16th, 2020|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur Products, Everything Dinosaur videos, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products|0 Comments

CollectA Deluxe Lisowicia bojani Video Review

Everything Dinosaur has created a short video review of the new for 2020 CollectA Deluxe Lisowicia bojani model.  As well as reviewing the figure, we have provided an outline of some of the science behind the discovery and naming of this huge, Late Triassic dicynodont.  In the video, (it lasts just over ten minutes), we also discuss a “secret” Placerias replica and pose the question which prehistoric animal models would you put in a diorama with these two members of the Dicynodontia?

Everything Dinosaur’s Video Review of the CollectA Deluxe Lisowicia bojani Model (Dynamic Dicynodonts)

Video Credit: Everything Dinosaur

A Dicynodont Duo

There are not that many dicynodont models made by mainstream manufacturers.  Creatures from the Triassic tend to be somewhat underrepresented in model ranges when compared to prehistoric animals that lived during the Jurassic or Cretaceous.  However, fans of the Dicynodontia have two protomammals to choose from.  There is the CollectA Deluxe Lisowicia bojani, which was introduced this year (2020) and an eye-catching Placerias replica to add to your collection.

A Dicynodont Duo – Lisowicia and Placerias

CollectA Lisowicia and a Placerias model.

The CollectA Deluxe Lisowicia bojani model (background) and a Placerias replica (foreground).

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The CollectA Deluxe 1:20 scale Lisowicia bojani model can be found in this section of our website: CollectA Deluxe Prehistoric Life Models and Figures.

Model Measurements

In the short video review, we measure the two models and comment on their size and scale.  The CollectA Deluxe Lisowicia replica measures around nineteen centimetres in length, stands approximately 7 cm high at the shoulder and that high-arched back is more than 10 cm tall.  The Placerias figure, is smaller, it measures about 10 cm in length and it stands around 5 cm high.  The sizing is apt, as although Placerias was a large dicynodont, it would have been dwarfed by the elephant-sized Lisowicia, should a Placerias ever encounter one.

Measuring a Prehistoric Protomammal – The Tale of the Tape (Lisowicia bojani)

Measuring the CollectA Deluxe Lisowicia model.

In the Everything Dinosaur video review the CollectA Lisowicia replica is measured.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Helping to Inform and Educate

One of the aims of our videos is to help explain some of the science behind the prehistoric animal that a particular figure might represent.  In our video review of the Lisowicia, we highlight where the fossils of this giant dicynodont were found and what other fossils were discovered in association with the remains.  Thanks to the thousands of bones that have been excavated from the Lisowicia dig site, researchers have been able to build up a comprehensive picture of the many different types of animals that co-existed with L. bojani.  For example, the narrator comments upon the discovery of the archosaur Smok wawelski and points out the difficulties in classifying this predator as either a member of the Theropoda or a rauisuchid – a diverse group of predatory archosaurs that sit on the crocodilian segment of the Archosauria family tree.

To view Everything Dinosaur’s YouTube channel: Everything Dinosaur on YouTube.  We recommend that you subscribe to our YouTube channel.

15 09, 2020

“Prehistoric Pets” – New Book Links Pets with Their Ancestors

By | September 15th, 2020|Adobe CS5, Book Reviews, Dinosaur Fans, Main Page, Photos, Press Releases|0 Comments

“Prehistoric Pets” – New Book Links Pets with Their Ancestors

A new book is due to be published shortly entitled “Prehistoric Pets”.  It has been written by the very talented palaeontologist Dr Dean Lomax, with illustrations by Mike Love.  This exciting forthcoming publication links pets with their prehistoric ancestors, helping to bridge a gap in children’s understanding about fossils and deep geological time.

The Front Cover of “Prehistoric Pets” by Dr Dean Lomax with Illustrations by Mike Love

The front cover of "Prehistoric Pets".

This colourful and well-written book takes the reader on a journey back in time, linking common household pets today with their prehistoric ancestors.  If you have ever wondered about the ancestors of cats, dogs and guinea pigs, then this exciting new publication will provide the answers.

Picture Credit: Templar Books/Everything Dinosaur

Highly Informative, Fact Filled and Humorous

Dr Dean Lomax is one of a very select number of academics who have the ability to communicate complex ideas in simple terms so that general readers can comprehend.  The book is crammed full of fascinating facts and snippets of information that children will relish.  Beautifully designed pop-ups feature amazing prehistoric creatures, animals such as the tiny Sifrhippus (siff-rip-uss), the oldest known ancestor of the modern horse.  A cat-sized creature that roamed Wyoming during the Eocene Epoch.

“Prehistoric Pets” – Tracing the Ancestry of the Modern Horse

Horses feature in the book "Prehistoric Pets".

One of the beautiful animal illustrations from the book “Prehistoric Pets” by Dr Dean Lomax (illustrated by Mike Love).

Picture Credit: Templar Books/Everything Dinosaur

This awesome book is due to be published next month (October 2020), it will make an ideal Christmas gift for a young palaeontologist.

When this book is available, Everything Dinosaur will be writing a review of “Prehistoric Pets”.

Well-written and Cleverly Designed – A Great Christmas Gift Idea “Prehistoric Pets”

"Prehistoric Pets" - brilliant bird facts.

Brilliant bird facts in the awesome new book written by Dr Dean Lomax and illustrated by Mike Love.  The book contains lots of amazing information and facts.  Written in a humorous style, “Prehistoric Pets” takes the reader on a journey back in time, linking familiar pets alive today with their prehistoric ancestors. 

Picture Credit: Templar Books/Everything Dinosaur

13 09, 2020

A Dinosaur Water Bottle

By | September 13th, 2020|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur Products, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products, Press Releases, Product Reviews|0 Comments

A Colourful Dinosaur Water Bottle

The return to school for the start of the autumn term has been very strange for many children.  Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, some pupils in the UK have not been in school since March.  This term is likely to very different for children, teachers and teaching assistants alike.  Everything Dinosaur has seen sales of its dinosaur-themed water bottle surge as parents, grandparents, guardians and carers prepared for the start of the new school year.  Children are encouraged to bring their own reusable water bottles and our tough, robust, dishwasher safe, plastic dinosaur water bottle with its large 500 millilitre capacity, has proved to be very popular with young dinosaur fans.

The Dinosaur Themed Water Bottle from Everything Dinosaur

A 500 ml capacity dinosaur water bottle.

The plastic dinosaur drinking bottle available from Everything Dinosaur (whilst stocks last).

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

An Ideal Water Bottle for School

The plastic water bottle is ideal for school.  It is dishwater safe and very sturdy.  The bottle has a large screw-on lid making it easy for little ones to top up and a secure flip cap top to permit no-spill drinking.  Just what a budding, young palaeontologist needs to quench their thirst.  The colourful dinosaur design in the front features a trio of dinosaurs, a Tyrannosaurus rex, a long-necked, plant-eating dinosaur with some prehistoric plants and trees to munch and a fabulous Triceratops.  There are even a couple of terrific pterosaurs to keep the dinosaurs company.

A Colourful Triceratops Features on the Front of the Dinosaur Water Bottle

A colourful Triceratops illustration.

A colourful Triceratops adorns the dinosaur water bottle.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The water bottle has been made from BPA-free plastic (free from bisphenol A or any other bisphenol compounds.  It is impact resistant and exceptionally tough, helping to extend the useful life of water bottles, potentially reducing plastic waste.  This product has exceptional dishwasher durability, encouraging proper sanitation and helping to keep plastic surfaces clean and free from bacteria and viruses.  With a substantial 500 ml capacity the bottle is big enough to provide plenty of refreshment, but it is lighter than glass, making it easier to handle for small hands without the fear of breaking.

By using this refillable bottle, you have will have helped to reduce the plastic pollution threat to oceans.

At just £4.16 plus tax (if applicable) and postage, this colourful dinosaur themed drinking vessel makes a welcome addition to a young person’s rucksack or school bag.  Prices accurate on date of publication (September 2020).

The dinosaur water bottle can be found (whilst stocks last), on this section of Everything Dinosaur’s website: Dinosaur Themed School Items (Back to School).

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