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4 10, 2019

PNSO Megalodon Model – More Information

By | October 4th, 2019|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur News and Updates, Everything Dinosaur Products, Everything Dinosaur videos, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products|0 Comments

PNSO Megalodon Model – More Information

At Everything Dinosaur, we try our best to respond to all the enquiries, questions and emails that we receive from our customers.  This is no mean feat considering the thousands of customers we have all over the world, but we do try hard to answer all the queries in a timely fashion.  For example, having produced a short video featuring the large Megalodon (Carcharocles megalodon) replica from PNSO, we were asked to show more details of this shark model.  To this end, within 24-hours, we produced another brief video showing the prehistoric shark model in greater detail.

The PNSO Large Megalodon Model – Showcasing “Patton” the Megalodon

Video Credit: Everything Dinosaur

PNSO Megalodon “Patton” Large Prehistoric Shark Model

In this short video presentation, we reaffirm the model’s size (it measures around 32 centimetres in length), we estimate the model’s scale at approximately 1:50 based on the length of Carcharocles megalodon at around 16 metres.  In addition, we highlight the “battle scarring” on the model and discuss the figure’s gloss finish.  Large predators tend to pick up a variety of injuries, we suspect Megalodon was no exception.  If it preyed on marine mammals, we expect creatures such as Obobenocetops which was contemporaneous with this prehistoric shark, not to succumb without putting up a fight.  Scars and tears in the fins would be just part of being an apex predator.

Holding a PNSO Megalodon Shark Model

PNSO Megalodon model "Patton".

The PNSO large Megalodon model “Patton” being held by an Everything Dinosaur team member.  Note the white “battle scars” on the body and the nicks and rips in the dorsal fin.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Our latest prehistoric animal themed video is now up on the company’s YouTube channel.  Everything Dinosaur’s YouTube channel features over a hundred different prehistoric animal model reviews and lots of other helpful information for model collectors and dinosaur fans.

Discover Everything Dinosaur on YouTube and please subscribe: Everything Dinosaur on YouTube.

A Glossy Wet-look

In this short video, we also comment on the finish of this shark replica.  The new version of “Patton” (the large PNSO Megalodon figure), has a glossier finish than its predecessor.  The model’s seams are much less visible and the addition of a gloss provides a pleasing wet-look finish to the figure.  As the video narrator remarked, the wet-look is very appropriate given the fact that this is a model of a marine animal.

For further details about the impressive PNSO Age of Dinosaurs model range, including information about the PNSO Megalodon figures visit: PNSO Age of Dinosaurs Figures and Replicas.

3 10, 2019

Most Complete Pterosaur Specimen Found in Australia to Date

By | October 3rd, 2019|Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal News Stories, Main Page, Palaeontological articles, Photos/Pictures of Fossils|0 Comments

Ferrodraco lentoni – The “Iron Dragon”

The fossil record for pterosaurs “down under” is extremely poor.  Only around twenty very fragmentary specimens are known.  However, a team of scientists, including researchers from the Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum (Winton, Queensland), have announced the discovery of a new species of flying reptile, what is more, the new species named Ferrodraco lentoni represents the most complete pterosaur known from Australia.

The Holotype Skull and Mandible of Ferrodraco lentoni

Ferrodraco lentoni holotype skull and jaw.

Ferrodraco lentoni holotype skull and mandible AODF 876. (A) dorsal view; (B) anterior view; (C) left lateral view; (D) ventral view; (E) right lateral view with line drawings (F and G).

Picture Credit: Scientific Reports

A Close Neighbour of Savannasaurus elliottorum

Local farmer Bob Elliott discovered the specimen eroding out of a bank adjacent to a small creek on Belmont Station in early 2017, the fossilised remains, although fragmentary, represent a type of flying reptile known as an ornithocheirid, a family of pterosaurs with a global distribution, with specimens known from the Americas, Europe, North Africa, Asia and with two Queensland representatives already – Aussiedraco and Mythunga.  Bob Elliott took some of the fossils to the experts at the Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum and a field team was despatched to excavate the rest of the material.

The pterosaur fossil material includes parts of the skull, the tips of the jaws, five partial vertebrae, limb bones and around forty isolated and broken teeth.  The pterosaur fossils were found less than five miles from the site of the  Savannasaurus elliottorum quarry.  Savannasaurus was a huge sauropod dinosaur, it was discovered in 2005 and formally described in 2016.  To read about Savannasaurus: Titanosaurs Crossing Continents Savannasaurus elliottorum.

A Skeletal Reconstruction of Ferrodraco lentoni (based on Tropeognathus mesembrinus)

Reconstruction of Ferrodraco lentoni.

Skeleton reconstruction of Ferrodraco lentoni, scale bar 5 cm.

Picture Credit: Scientific Reports – based on an illustration by Mark Witton

Named after the Late Mayor of Winton

The genus name is a reference to the ironstone preservation of the holotype specimen, and the Latin “draco” (dragon).   The species name honours former Winton Shire mayor Graham Thomas “Butch” Lenton, in recognition of his years of service to the Winton community and his strong support for the Australian Age of Dinosaurs Natural History Museum.

Ferrodraco is estimated to have lived some 96 million years ago and it is thought to have had a wingspan of around four metres.  Corresponding author for the scientific paper, published in the journal Scientific Reports, Adele Pentland, a PhD student at the Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum, commented:

“Ferrodraco would have been an apex aerial predator around 96 million years ago.  At this time the Winton region was on the southern shores of an inland sea and was globally positioned about where Victoria’s southern coastline is today.”

A Life Reconstruction of Ferrodraco lentoni (Based on Tropeognathus mesembrinus)

Mojo Fun Tropeognathus.

A life reconstruction of Ferrodraco lentoni based on the Mojo Fun model of T. mesembrinus.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The scientific paper: “Ferrodraco lentoni gen. et sp. nov., a new ornithocheirid pterosaur from the Winton Formation (Cenomanian–lower Turonian) of Queensland, Australia” by Adele H. Pentland, Stephen F. Poropat, Travis R. Tischler, Trish Sloan, Robert A. Elliott, Harry A. Elliott, Judy A. Elliott and David A. Elliott published in Scientific Reports.

2 10, 2019

New for 2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Models

By | October 2nd, 2019|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur News and Updates, Everything Dinosaur Products, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products, Press Releases|1 Comment

New for 2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Models

The new for 2020 prehistoric animal models from Safari Ltd have been announced.  In total, nine new figures will be added to the Wild Safari Prehistoric World model range, namely:

  1. Concavenator
  2. Deinonychus
  3. Dilophosaurus
  4. Edmontosaurus
  5. Ichthyosaurus (marine reptile)
  6. Pachycephalosaurus
  7. Qianzhousaurus
  8. Sarcosuchus (prehistoric crocodile)
  9. Shringasaurus (a bizarre, diapsid reptile from the Triassic of India, that was only formally named and described two years ago)

The Wild Safari Prehistoric World Concavenator Dinosaur Model

New for 2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Concavenator dinosaur model.

The new for 2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Concavenator dinosaur model.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Wild Safari Prehistoric World Deinonychus Dinosaur Model

The new for 2020 the Wild Safari Prehistoric World Deinonychus dinosaur model.

New for 2020 the Wild Safari Prehistoric World Deinonychus dinosaur model.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Wild Safari Prehistoric World Dilophosaurus Dinosaur Model

New for 2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Dilophosaurus dinosaur model.

The new for 2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Dilophosaurus dinosaur model.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Wild Safari Prehistoric World Edmontosaurus Dinosaur Model

The new for 2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Edmontosaurus dinosaur model.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Wild Safari Prehistoric World Ichthyosaurus Marine Reptile Model

New for 2020 the Wild Safari Prehistoric World Ichthyosaurus model.

The Wild Safari Prehistoric World Ichthyosaurus model.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Wild Safari Prehistoric World Pachycephalosaurus Dinosaur Model

The new for 2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Pachycephalosaurus dinosaur model.

The new for 2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Pachycephalosaurus model.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Wild Safari Prehistoric World Qianzhousaurus Dinosaur Model

The new for 2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Qianzhousaurus tyrannosaurid model.

The new for 2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Qianzhousaurus model.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The World Safari Prehistoric World Sarcosuchus Model

2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Sarcosuchus.

New for 2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Sarcosuchus model.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Wild Safari Prehistoric World Shringasaurus Model

New for 2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Shringasaurus.

The new for 2020 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Shringasaurus.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Tale of the Tape – Model Measurements

We know how important the size of a figure is to dinosaur fans and model collectors, we have published details (below), of the approximate factory model measurements.  As and when models come into stock, our team members will check measurements and record model details.

  • Concavenator – length 16.8 cm and just under 7 cm (head height).
  • Deinonychus – length just over 22 cm, height of head just over 8.5 cm.
  • Dilophosaurus – length just over 16 cm, height of head just over 7.5 cm.
  • Edmontosaurus – length 26.2 cm, height 9.5 cm.  The Edmontosaurus is the largest prehistoric animal model Safari Ltd are introducing early in 2020.
  • Ichthyosaurus – length just over 19 cm.
  • Pachycephalosaurus – length 20.6 cm, height of head just over 10 cm.
  • Qianzhousaurus -length 22.9 cm, height of head just over 9 cm.
  • Sarcosuchus – length just under 26.5 cm.
  • Shringasaurus – length 17 cm, height of head 6 cm.

Expected When?

These figures will be put into production over the next few weeks, the official introduction date is around February 2020.  However, Everything Dinosaur hopes to have some of these models a little earlier, perhaps around December 2019.  Pricing for these models has yet to be announced.

Everything Dinosaur’s priority reserve list is now open, to reserve any of these figures simply email us, stating which model(s) you would like to reserve: Email Everything Dinosaur.

1 10, 2019

PNSO Large Megalodon Model – Patton

By | October 1st, 2019|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur Products, Everything Dinosaur videos, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products, Product Reviews|0 Comments

The Battle Damaged PNSO Large Megalodon Model

Our friends at PNSO introduced this year a new version of their large prehistoric shark replica (Megalodon).  We have been asked by many fans of prehistoric animals to show more pictures of this exciting figure.  Our team members are happy to oblige and we have produced a short video in which we unbox this large replica and provide a view of the amazing paintwork and detail on this PVC shark.  We also comment on the intricate and subtle scarring that is seen on this PNSO replica.

The Battle Scarred PNSO Large Megalodon Model

Video Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Reviewing a Fearsome Prehistoric Shark

Known from calcified vertebrae and most famously, from huge triangular teeth, this prehistoric shark is thought to be the largest hypercarnivorous Elasmobranch to have ever existed.  Size estimates vary, but a length of approximately sixteen metres has been proposed.  The PNSO Megalodon figure is also an impressive size, it measures around 32 centimetres in length and when erected on its display base (included in the box), the figure stands some 25 cm high.

The Stunning Cover Sleeve Artwork for the PNSO Megalodon Model

Brilliant artwork on the PNSO Megalodon model cover sleeve.

The amazing, colourful sleeve artwork on the PNSO Megalodon figure.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Patton or Patton?

In our short video, (it lasts around 1 minute 45 seconds), we highlight some of the beautiful detail on this amazing prehistoric shark model.  PNSO now have two Megalodon models in their range.  Earlier this year, a second, smaller model was introduced, this figure had an articulated lower jaw.  Ironically, both these figures have been given the nickname “Patton” by the manufacturer, this might lead to a little bit of confusion.  We have asked our chums at PNSO for explanation, it seems that since Patton proved to be such a popular name for the larger figure, then the monicker became the name of choice for the second Megalodon replica.  So, PNSO currently offer two Megalodon figures, both entitled Patton.

“Patton” and “Patton” Two Megalodon Prehistoric Shark Replicas from PNSO

PNSO Megalodon shark models.

Which of the PNSO Megalodon prehistoric shark models do you prefer?  Please select either “Patton” or “Patton”.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Everything Dinosaur YouTube channel provides lots of informative and helpful videos about dinosaur and prehistoric animal models.  Checkout out our YouTube channel and please subscribe.

Find Everything Dinosaur on YouTube: Everything Dinosaur on YouTube.

Further details on the extensive PNSO Age of Dinosaurs model range, including information on the two PNSO Megalodon figures visit: PNSO Age of Dinosaurs Figures and Replicas.

30 09, 2019

Rebor GrabNGo Komodo Dragon – What Lies Beneath?

By | September 30th, 2019|Everything Dinosaur News and Updates, Everything Dinosaur Products, Everything Dinosaur videos, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products|0 Comments

Rebor GrabNGo Komodo Dragon – Examining the Underside

Everything Dinosaur team members have been busy fielding all the questions we have received about the exciting new GrabNGo product line from Rebor.  The first of these new replicas, a 1:6 scale replica of a Komodo dragon (Varanus komodoensis), is due to arrive in November, but we are expecting to receive some more production samples before then.  In the meantime, staff have been responding to the emails, phone calls and social media messages about this new product line.

Several customers commented on the beautiful detail on the skin that they could see from our photographs, but asked us to show pictures of the underside of the model as well.  We always try to help our customers out, so without further ado we set about posting up a short YouTube video showing the “belly of the beast.”

The Rebor GrabNGo Komodo Dragon 1:6 Scale Model – What Lies Beneath?

Video Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Detailed Underside of the Rebor GrabNGo Komodo Dragon

In this short video (it lasts a fraction under fifty seconds), we show a view of the belly of the lizard replica.  The fine detail associated with the top of the model is mirrored underneath.  The figure is beautifully crafted and at about half a metre in length, it is an impressive size.  We are not sure why many of our customers wanted to see the underside, we suspect that inferior figures may not have the detailing or finish.  Our customers can rest assured, the Rebor GrabNGo underside shows the same care and attention to detail as the rest of the model, although we would point out that our production prototype is missing a cloaca.

Examining the Underside of the Rebor GrabNGo Komodo Dragon Replica

A Komod dragon model goes "belly up".

Showing the underside of the Rebor GrabNGo Komodo dragon lizard.  A Komodo dragon model goes “belly up”!

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Priority Reserve List is Now Open

The model has been priced at just £13.32 plus tax (if due) and postage.  Everything Dinosaur opened a reserve list for this figure a few days ago and the company has already logged a great many reservation requests.  The model is due to be in stock sometime in November (2019).

To join Everything Dinosaur’s priority reserve list for this exciting new figure, simply contact Everything Dinosaur by email: Email us to Join our No Obligation Priority Reserve List

Showing the Figure the Right Way Up!

Rebor GrabNGo Komodo dragon.

The new for 2019 Rebor GrabNGo Komodo dragon replica (1:6 scale model).

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

This is certainly one animal replica that looks good whichever way you look at it.

29 09, 2019

Kit Out Your Young Palaeontologists

By | September 29th, 2019|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur Products, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products, Press Releases|0 Comments

Kit Out Your Young Palaeontologists

Kit out your budding, young palaeontologists like seasoned dinosaur hunters with these two super additions to the Everything Dinosaur product range.  We have a young palaeontologist field kit and a child’s dinosaur themed hard hat to help turn enthusiastic young dinosaur fans into experienced fossil collectors.

The Dinosaur Explorer Hard Hat

Dinosaur explorer hard hat.

Go exploring for dinosaur fossils with this child’s dinosaur explorer hard hat.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Go Hunting for Dinosaur Fossils

Go exploring for dinosaur fossil bones and teeth with this super, child’s dinosaur themed hard hat.  The hard hat comes complete with a headlamp torch to help illuminate the young explorer’s path.  Please note, this is a hat ideal for role play and dressing up games and that this is not a piece of actual safety apparel, although the hat with its motif of dinosaur skeletons, claws and teeth is much more attractive than our own hard hats that we wear.  The torch requires two AA batteries (not supplied), but the hat comes with comprehensive instructions about fitting/changing batteries.  The child’s hard hat even has an adjustable plastic strap, just like a real hard hat, so you can ensure that the hat fits snug and secure.

The Dinosaur Explorer Palaeontologist Field Kit

Dinosaur Explorer Young Palaeontologists Field Kit.

The young palaeontologist dinosaur explorer kit contains a sturdy plastic water bottle along with a toy compass and a pair of dinosaur themed binoculars.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Dinosaur Explorer Field Palaeontologist Kit

What a super idea for a Christmas gift!  We suspect that your young dinosaur fan will be roaring with excitement when they see this field palaeontologist kit.  The field kit contains the essentials to help budding young dinosaur hunters to explore and hunt for dinosaur fossils.  There is a sturdy and robust bright red water bottle, which you can write your name on.  The kit also includes a pair of dinosaur themed binoculars and a toy compass to help you plot your way through the Hell Creek Formation of Montana, or your garden, whichever is the nearest.

The Young Palaeontologist Dinosaur Explorer Palaeontologist Field Kit (Contents)

A palaeontologist field kit.

Dinosaur Explorer Young Palaeontologist Field Kit.  The kit contains a toy compass, a sturdy, plastic water bottle and a pair of dinosaur themed binoculars to help you spot fossils!

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The child’s hard hat and the dinosaur explorer field palaeontologist set are great for creative and imaginative play.  Helping to enthuse the next generation of Earth scientists with exciting games and role play.

To view the dinosaur explorer young palaeontologists field kit and the child’s hard hat, simply visit this section of our website: Dinosaur Gifts and Toys.

28 09, 2019

Update on the New Rebor GrabNGo Komodo Dragon Figure

By | September 28th, 2019|Adobe CS5, Everything Dinosaur News and Updates, Everything Dinosaur Newsletters, Everything Dinosaur Products, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products|0 Comments

Update on the New Rebor GrabNGo Komodo Dragon Figure

Everything Dinosaur has recently updated its newsletter subscribers about the introduction of the Rebor GrabNGo Komodo dragon model.  This fabulous 1:6 scale replica of the world’s largest living lizard (Varanus komodoensis), is the first of a new range of exciting new figures entitled “GrabNGo”.  The model measures around half a metre in length and Everything Dinosaur team members have been eagerly looking forward to receiving this model in time for the Christmas market.

The Rebor GrabNGo Komodo Dragon Model is Coming into Stock at Everything Dinosaur

The Rebor GrabNGo Komodo dragon model coming into stock at Everything Dinosaur.

The Rebor GrabNGo 1:6 scale Komodo dragon model is coming into stock in November (2019).

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

A 1/6th Scale Komodo Dragon Replica

Details – The Rebor GrabNGo Komodo Dragon Model

The Rebor GrabNGo Komodo dragon 1:6 scale model will be coming into stock in November (2019).

The Rebor GrabNGo Komodo dragon model will be coming into stock in November (2019).  Click on this image to contact Everything Dinosaur by email and request a Rebor Komodo dragon model be reserved!

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Product Details

  • Likely to be in stock around November (2019).
  • The first of a new Rebor range of both extant and extinct animals.
  • Price £13.32 plus tax and postage (pricing information correct as of September 2019).
  • A top quality, beautifully finished vinyl replica.
  • Measures around 50 cm in length.
  • Represents a 1/6th scale Komodo dragon figure but can also be used to represent the extinct super-predator Megalania* (1/12th scale replica approximately).
  • Limited stocks available on the first production run.

Megalania (Varanus priscus, or sometimes referred to as Megalania prisca)* – the actual size of the extinct, giant lizard Megalania is unknown, estimates of length based on the analysis of fossil dorsal vertebrae and comparisons with living varanids suggest a length of between 5 and 7 metres.

To join our no obligation, priority reserve list for the Rebor GrabNGo Komodo dragon, simply email Everything Dinosaur: Email Everything Dinosaur to Reserve a Rebor Komodo Dragon.

The Komodo Dragon Model Measures Around Half a Metre in Length

A wonderful representation of the largest living lizard - Komodo dragon.

A dorsal view of the new Rebor GrabNGo Komodo dragon model. The fine detail on this 1:6 scale model can be seen in this view of the head, back and tail of the replica.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

For further information regarding the introduction of this exciting, new lizard scale model: The Rebor GrabNGo Range – Varanus komodoensis.

To view the current range of Rebor models and figures available from Everything Dinosaur: Rebor Dinosaurs and Animal Models

27 09, 2019

End Cretaceous Mass Extinction Event Disrupted Oceans for Millions of Years

By | September 27th, 2019|Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal News Stories, Main Page, Palaeontological articles|0 Comments

New Study Examines the Impact of End Cretaceous Mass Extinction Event

A team of researchers, including scientists from Bristol University and the University of Southampton have published a new study looking at the impact of the extra-terrestrial Chicxulub impact event that devasted life on Earth 66 million years ago.  The non-avian dinosaurs may be the most famous victims of this mass extinction, but this study examined the consequences of a near instantaneous collapse of ocean food webs.  The plankton, the base of the ocean ecosystem, as primary produces, were disrupted for around 1.8 million years.  It then took a further 8 million years for global species numbers to fully recover.

End Cretaceous Extinction Event Disrupted the World’s Oceans for Millions of Years

Earth impact event.

Cataclysmic impact event that led to the extinction of the dinosaurs, but the bolide impact devastated global oceanic ecosystems that subsequently took millions of years to recover.

Picture Credit: Don Davis (Commissioned by NASA)

Major Oceanic Food Web Instability

Writing in the journal “Nature”, the research team, which also included scientists from the University of California, University College London and the Institute for Geoscience, Goethe-Universität Frankfurt (Germany), found that while the plankton in the oceans showed the first signs of ecological recovery almost immediately, these early communities of microscopic organisms were highly unstable and cell sizes unusually small.  With the collapse of the plankton population, the loss of these primary produces in the food chain would have devasted the vast majority of the other organisms in the ecosystem, resulting in their demise and in a lot of cases, their extinction.

Microscopic Nannoplankton Fossils

Fossils - Nannoplankton.

Microscopic Nannoplankton fossils.

Picture Credit: University of Southampton/University College London ( Samantha Gibbs/Paul Bown)

The “Reboot” of a Global Ecosystem

The research team plotted the changes in the fossil plankton record by studying the number and composition of calcareous nannoplankton fossils deposited over a period of 13 million years.  A “snapshot” of the population was mapped at intervals of approximately 13,000 years.  Cell size, abundance and species diversity were all recorded.  In total more than 700,000 fossils were studied.  This scientific paper has provided a remarkable insight into how a global marine ecosystem “reboots”.

As much today as in the past, the marine ecosystem is dependent on plankton at its base and this study highlights the risks posed by diversity loss which may result in highly unstable communities, loss of important ecosystem functions and the long timescales of recovery.  Important lessons to learn as we enter a period of extensive, global climate change.

Co-author of the paper, palaeobiologist Dr Samantha Gibbs “University of Southampton” commented:

“Losing species today runs the risk of eliminating key creatures in ecosystems.  What we’ve demonstrated from this fossil record is that function is achieved if you have the right players fulfilling key roles.  Today, by reducing biodiversity, we are running the risk of losing our critical ecosystem players, many of whose importance we don’t yet fully appreciate.”

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

The scientific paper: “Diversity decoupled from ecosystem function and resilience during mass extinction recovery” by Sarah A. Alvarez, Samantha J. Gibbs, Paul R. Bown, Hojung Kim, Rosie M. Sheward and Andy Ridgwell published in the journal Nature.

26 09, 2019

Stunning Smilodon

By | September 26th, 2019|Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal Drawings, Main Page|0 Comments

Stunning Smilodon Illustration

Our thanks to Caldey who sent into Everything Dinosaur her latest prehistoric animal illustration.  Caldey decided to produce a drawing of a Smilodon (Sabre-toothed cat) and what a carefully drawn member of the cat family (Felidae), has been produced.  Normally, we receive lots of dinosaur drawings at our offices, our postbag contains pictures of Triceratops, Stegosaurus, sauropods and of course T. rex.  Being sent a Smilodon drawing is quite a rarity.

A Smilodon as Illustrated by Caldey

Smilodon illustration.

Caldey’s illustration of a Smilodon (Sabre-toothed cat).

Picture Credit: Caldey

“Knife Tooth”

Smilodon is a genus of the extinct Felidae subfamily the Machairodontinae.  These cats were both geographically and temporally widespread (Smilodon is associated with both North and South America), with the very last of them surviving into the Late Pleistocene. The powerfully built Smilodon is famous for its huge upper canine teeth and palaeontologists have undertaken a great deal of research to determine just how these teeth functioned and how these predators hunted prey.  The genus has been translated from the Greek as “knife tooth”, a reference to those huge canines that in some of our specimens measure more than 18 centimetres in length (Smilodon fatalis).

A Close-up View of the Head and Neck of Caldey’s Sabre-toothed Cat

A Smilodon illustration.

This close up shows the fine detail on the head and neck of the Smilodon drawing.

Picture Credit: Caldey

Although the exact coat colouration of Smilodon is unknown, there has been a recent trend to depict this animal with a mottled or spotted coat.  It is thought that ancestral cats, which were small and confined to forested habitats probably had spotted coats that would have provided more effective camouflage.  However, the colouration of Smilodon remains speculative.

A spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur commented:

“Caldey’s drawing show lots of amazing detail and she has taken great care to fill in the background for her big cat.  We are sure that Smilodon feels very much at home in that landscape.”

25 09, 2019

Stiff Skull Helped T. rex Crush Bones

By | September 25th, 2019|Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal News Stories, Dinosaur Fans, Main Page, Palaeontological articles|0 Comments

Stiff Skull Helped T. rex Crush Bones

Numerous research papers have been published about those monstrous jaws and huge skull of Tyrannosaurus rex.  Many of the studies have examined the biomechanics in a bid to better understand the bite forces that this Late Cretaceous terror could generate.  It is widely accepted that T. rex had a bone crushing bite, but just how it managed to crush the bones of a Triceratops or an unfortunate Edmontosaurus without damaging itself, has puzzled palaeontologists.  A new study, published in the journal “The Anatomical Record”, suggests that the T. rex skull was much stiffer than previously thought, much more like a crocodile skull or that of a hyena than a scaled-up, flexible bird skull.

New Study Suggests T. rex Had a Stiff Skull

"Scotty" the Tyrannosaurus rex.

A reconstruction of the skeleton of “Scotty” the T. rex.  Regarded as the heaviest specimen of T. rex known to science.   A new study suggests that like other bone-crushing tetrapods, the skull was functionally akinetic.

Picture Credit: Amanda Kelley

One of the co-authors of the study, Kaleb Sellers of the Missouri University School of Medicine explained:

“The T. rex had a skull that’s about six feet long, five feet wide and four feet high and bites with the force of about six tons.  Previous researchers looked at this from a bone-only perspective without taking into account all the connections, ligaments and cartilage that really mediate the interactions between the bones.”

Computer Generated Models Examined Stresses in the Upper Skull with a Focus on the Palatal Area

T. rex skull stress test.

Computer generated models were created to assess the stresses placed on an adult T. rex skull.

Picture Credit: University of Missouri

Looking at the Roof of the Mouth (Palatal Area)

The scientists, which included Kevin Middleton of the Missouri University School of Medicine, M. Scott Echols of The Medical Centre for Birds, Lawrence Witmer of Ohio University and Julian Davis (University of Southern Indiana), used a combination of anatomical study, computer modelling and biomechanical analysis assessing the skulls of a gecko and a parrot to examine how the skull of this apex Late Cretaceous predator was adapted to deliver such powerful bites.

Casey Holliday, from the University of Missouri, who also helped to write the scientific paper commented:

“Dinosaurs are like modern-day birds, crocodiles and lizards in that they inherited particular joints in their skulls from fish — ball and socket joints, much like people’s hip joints — that seem to lend themselves, but not always, to movement like in snakes.  When you put a lot of force on things, there’s a trade-off between movement and stability.  Birds and lizards have more movement but less stability.  When we applied their individual movements to the T. rex skull, we saw it did not like being wiggled in ways that the lizard and bird skulls do, which suggests more stiffness.”

A Functionally Akinetic Skull

Tyrannosaurus rex is considered to have one of the strongest bites of any terrestrial tetrapod.  There are lots of scientific papers and other literature that document this evidence.  Over the years, Everything Dinosaur have produced many articles on this subject area, including a blog post that summarised research published in “Biology Letters” – T. rex had a Bite More Powerful than any Other Land Animal.

The Skull and Jaws of Tyrannosaurus rex

A close-up view of a Kaiyodo Sofubi Toy Box Tyrannosaurus rex "classic" colour.

A close-up view of the head of the Kaiyodo Sofubi Toy Box T. rex “classic” colouration.  T. rex is famous for its huge and powerful jaws.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

A Biomechanical Paradox

The skull of T. rex has been regarded as quite flexible by palaeontologists, that is, it exhibits a degree of cranial kinensis.  The joints in the skull are quite mobile and flexible in relation to each other and the animal’s braincase.  This contradicts with what is seen in many extant tetrapods who are known to have a powerful, bone smashing bite.  Alligators and hyenas for example, have relatively robust and inflexible skulls, when compared to the skull of a bird or a lizard.  If the T. rex skull was flexible but still capable of delivering an enormous bite force, this is a biomechanical paradox, it defies a logical explanation.  Furthermore, the greatest bite forces measured for crocodilians and hyenas (ourselves for example too), are detected towards the back of the jaws, whereas, in Tyrannosaurus rex, the largest bite forces that have been calculated are recorded at the front of the jaws.

This New Analysis Suggests that the T. rex Skull was Functionally Akinetic

T. rex upper skull diagram.

Lateral and ventral views of a T. rex skull. The skull may have been more robust and stiffer than previously thought.

Picture Credit: University of Missouri

The researchers identified a number of adaptations in the cranium of T. rex to support the idea that the skull was not as flexible as previously thought.  The scientists postulate that the skull was functionally akinetic (much stiffer than previously surmised).

Research that Provides a Better Understanding of Our Own Joints and Bones

This study will help palaeontologists to better understand the function of tyrannosaurid skulls and the researchers postulate that their findings can help advance human and veterinary medicine.

The study, “Palatal biomechanics and its significance for cranial kinesis in Tyrannosaurus rex”, was published in The Anatomical Record.  Authors include Kevin Middleton of the Missouri University School of Medicine; M. Scott Echols of The Medical Centre for Birds; Lawrence Witmer of Ohio University and Julian Davis of University of Southern Indiana.

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

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