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4 10, 2021

Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri Model in Stock

By | October 4th, 2021|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur News and Updates, Everything Dinosaur Products, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products|0 Comments

The excellent Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri dinosaur model is in stock at Everything Dinosaur. The replica of a Brazilian dinosaur, created by a Brazilian design team has reached our warehouse and prehistoric animal model collectors can now acquire this figure from a 5-star rated supplier.

The Irritator challengeri dinosaur model
An Everything Dinosaur team member holds the Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri dinosaur model, which in turn is holding in its claws the replica of a lungfish (Equinoxiodus alcantarensis) which is supplied as an accessory with this dinosaur figure along with an optional display base.

Product Testing

Team members at the UK-based company secured a sample of this dinosaur figure which then went into product testing with the independent product testing company Eurofins. The figure may be designed for collectors over 14 years of age and it might be marketed as a 14+ figure but Everything Dinosaur prudently took the decision to get this model assessed under the General Product Safety Directive, before committing to stocking it. After all, consumer safety and the well-being of our customers are matters that Everything Dinosaur takes very seriously.

We documented our testing work on the Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri figure in a series of posts and YouTube videos.

Irritator challengeri product safety tests
The independent product safety test under the General Product Safety Directive for the YvY Figures Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri 1:20 scale dinosaur model.

A 1:20 Scale Theropod Model

The impressive theropod model measures around 37 cm in length and the optional display base is approximately 19 cm long and 8 cm in width at its widest part. YvY Figures who are the company behind the Dino Hazard brand state that the Irritator figure is in approximately 1:20 scale.

Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri box contents
The Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri is supplied with an optional display base and a lungfish prey item.

Optional Display Base

Whilst there is much to be admired in the details on the display base, the model does not sit well in the footprints. Everything Dinosaur advises that if collectors want to display this figure on the base, then steps are taken to ensure that the figure is permanently fixed to the base. It should be noted that the dinosaur model was designed with the appropriate weight distribution and it can stand without the base.

Displaying the Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri dinosaur model
The Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri dinosaur model can be displayed on or off its base. If the model is displayed on its optional display base, then Everything Dinosaur recommends that this figure is glued to the base.
Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri - a close-up view of the head
A close-up view of the articulated jaw on the Dino Hazard Irritator dinosaur model. The Irritator has an articulated jaw.

Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri Model

A spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur stated:

“This is the first prehistoric animal figure under the Dino Hazard brand, more figures are planned including an excellent Carcharodontosaurus model. We have offered our assistance to YvY Figures and already provided them with advice to help get this second project off the ground and running. As for the Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri model, we are delighted to act as a legal importer and distributor for this excellent figure”.

For the time being, the Dino Hazard Irritator has been placed in the W-Dragon section of the Everything Dinosaur website, this has been done until YvY Figures have more models in their inventory so we can provide a dedicated product section for the Dino Hazard brand.

To view the W-Dragon figures and the new Dino Hazard Irritator model: Find the Dino Hazard Irritator Model Here.

3 10, 2021

PNSO to Add a Livyatan Model

By | October 3rd, 2021|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur News and Updates, Everything Dinosaur Products, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products, Press Releases|0 Comments

PNSO are to add a model of the giant, prehistoric, toothed whale known as Livyatan to its mid-size model range. The figure, Requena the Livyatan is likely to be in stock at Everything Dinosaur sometime in mid to late November.

PNSO Requena the Livyatan model close view of the head
A close-up view of the head of Requena the Livyatan.

PNSO Requena the Livyatan

Named and described in 2010 (L. melvillei), Livyatan is known from the Pisco Formation of Peru, although isolated fossil teeth indicate that it may have ranged over much of the Southern Hemisphere. The species name honours the American author Herman Melville who wrote “Moby Dick”, an epic story of the quest to hunt a giant, white sperm whale. The novel was first published in October 1851, now almost exactly 170 years later, PNSO have introduced a replica of this huge cetacean, one of the largest predators of all time.

PNSO Requena the Livyatan model
PNSO Requena the Livyatan prehistoric whale model anterior view.

Livyatan Model Measurements

The new PNSO prehistoric whale figure measures an impressive 32 cm in length. The tip of the small dorsal fin stands some 8.5 cm off the ground. Given the curve of the body of the model, PNSO state that the actual length of the figure is over 36.5 cm. Livyatan is only known from skull material and isolated teeth. Palaeontologists are not sure how big this prehistoric whale from the Miocene Epoch was. Size estimates vary between 13.5 metres and 18 metres long.

PNSO does not publish a scale for their mid-size models, however, based on the stated curved length of the model, team members at Everything Dinosaur estimate that the PNSO Requena the Livyatan replica is between 1:36 and 1:49 scale.

PNSO Requena the Livyatan measurements
The PNSO Requena the Livyatan model measures 32 cm long and the model is 8.5 cm high.

In Stock at Everything Dinosaur November 2021

A spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur confirmed that they had known about this model for a while. However, they wanted PNSO to make the official announcement before commenting.

The spokesperson added:

“We have known about PNSO model plans for some time. It is wonderful to have a replica of a prehistoric whale added to the PNSO model range, especially since this company has already produced a model of the contemporaneous prehistoric shark Otodus which is better known as Megalodon.”

PNSO Requena the Livyatan model
The PNSO Requena the Livyatan prehistoric whale model.

Supplied with Support Stands

The PNSO Requena the Livyatan model is supplied with two transparent support stands to help this prehistoric whale figure to be displayed.

The spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur added, that they had received requests from many prehistoric animal model collectors to lobby for more prehistoric mammals to be added to ranges. The addition of a Livyatan replica, the first mainstream model of this giant, prehistoric whale to have been produced, is exactly what many model collectors have been looking for.

The PNSO Requena the Livyatan model is likely to be in stock mid to late November 2021.

PNSO Requena the Livyatan model box
PNSO Requena the Livyatan packaging.

PNSO Age of Dinosaurs Prehistoric Animal Models

To view the range of PNSO prehistoric animal models available from Everything Dinosaur: PNSO Age of Dinosaurs.

2 10, 2021

T. rex Joins in Halloween Fun

By | October 2nd, 2021|Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal News Stories, Dinosaur Fans, Educational Activities, Main Page|0 Comments

All Hallows Eve is fast approaching. Halloween a time of spooky stories, murderous monsters and scary skeletons, all harmless fun but 66 million years ago real monsters roamed our planet and one of the most frightening of them all was Tyrannosaurus rex, a giant carnivorous dinosaur that could have swallowed a small child in one gulp!

Visitors to Wollaton Park in Nottinghamshire will get the chance to experience the fearsome T. rex up close as “Titus the T. rex is King” exhibit will be open this October half-term. Staff members have laid on a separate spooky skeleton trail in the grounds and the Deer Park, as the stunning Grade I listed mansion gets ready for the bewitching hours.

Titus the T. rex Halloween fun at Wollaton Hall
This Halloween take time out to take in a Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton at Wollaton Hall.

“Titus the T. rex is King” Exhibition

Covering some 4,000 square feet across four exhibition galleries, visitors to the “Titus the T. rex is King” exhibit will get the chance to view a skeleton of the “tyrant lizard king”, complete with its terrifying, bone-crushing teeth. Experience the excavation, fossil study and preparation, examination and the rebuilding of one of the largest, land predators of all time. Some monsters might be imaginary, but this cleverly constructed exhibition tells the story of a living animal and the actual T. rex fossil bones incorporated within the display provide an insight into the life of an apex predator, a giant reptile, the last of its kind, the result of over 100 million years of evolution which resulted in a 7-tonne dinosaur with super senses tuned to hunting and killing.

Titus the T.rex exhibit
The spectacular Titus the T. rex exhibit at Wollaton Hall.

A Bone-chilling Journey of Discovery

Set to excite and engage all ages with digital and interactive virtual media displays, the exhibition allows visitors to dig for dinosaur bones, unpack the skeleton anatomically and re-create Titus. To further prepare young visitors for perhaps encountering a terrifying T. rex one day, Wollaton Hall’s Learning & Education team are running a series of dinosaur themed Family Workshops which will be available during the October half-term.

Nottingham City Council’s Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture, Cllr Eunice Campbell-Clark, commented:

“We are thrilled that the exhibition Titus: T. rex is King enables families to experience a real life skeleton of a T. rex, and discover and explore Natural History, evolution and the environment. It has been enjoyed by local residents and visitors from far afield, and if you haven’t visited already, what better time to see the skeleton of a giant dinosaur than at Halloween!”

Halloween Fun at Wollaton Hall

Wollaton Park will also see the return of the Traditional Rides fair with a Halloween twist and fair food, including mushy peas, burgers, hot dogs, bonfire marshmallow milkshakes and pumpkin spiced lattes in the café kiosk for a variety of Halloween fun this October half-term.

Rachael Evans, Museums Development Manager at Nottingham City Museums added:

“Coming face to face with an actual T. rex is an experience very few in the world can claim. Even in skeleton form, Titus’ power and presence is unmistakable – we have had to dedicate the largest room at Wollaton Hall just to him alone. Titus T. rex is King will take you on a truly unique journey discovering all there is to know about this dinosaur – the largest predator in its ecosystem. The sheer size and scale of the skeleton takes your breath away. It is a truly an amazing discovery and an absolute must-see.”

Can you spot the prehistoric animals? Can you find “Titus the T. rex”?

Tickets and Details

Tickets for “Titus T. rex is King” are on sale now (October 2021). Priced at £13 for an adult, £8.75 for a child (under 16 years), students and concessions, £34 for a family ticket (two adults and two children under 16 years) and under 3s and carers have no entry fees to pay. (Includes booking fee).

Family Workshops tickets vary based on the activity. The ‘skeleton’ outdoor trail is available in Wollaton Hall’s shops & cafés for £2.

For further information and for ticket details: Wollaton Hall “Titus T. rex is King” Exhibition.

1 10, 2021

New Giant Penguin from New Zealand

By | October 1st, 2021|Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal News Stories, Dinosaur Fans, Main Page, Palaeontological articles, Photos/Pictures of Fossils|0 Comments

Fossils discovered on a beach by a group of school children on a field trip have been identified as a new species of giant, prehistoric penguin. The 1.4-metre-tall bird has been named Kairuku waewaeroa and it hunted fish in the waters off New Zealand’s North Island some 30 million years ago.

The ancestors of today’s penguins ( Sphenisciformes), probably lived alongside those other famous archosaurs – the Dinosauria Penguins Probably Lived Alongside Dinosaurs. Fossils of penguins are known from the Palaeocene and over the last few years, palaeontologists have been able to build up arguably, the most complete and continuous fossil record of any type of bird. The new giant penguin K. waewaeroa comes from the Glen Massey Formation and the fossils found by the school children on a Hamilton Junior Naturalist Club (JUNATS) field trip to Kawhia Harbour, North Island in 2006, represents one of the most complete prehistoric penguin specimens found to date.

Giant penguin from New Zealand Kairuku waewaeroa
The Kawhia giant penguin Kairuku waewaeroa from the Oligocene of North Island (New Zealand). Picture credit: Simone Giovanardi.

CT Scans Used to Create Three-dimensional Models

The partially articulated fossil material consisting of limb bones, cervical vertebrae and the pelvis preserved in a single block was presented to Waikato Museum Te Whare Taonga o Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand in 2017. The research team studying the fossil bones, who included Simone Giovanardi and Daniel Thomas (Massey University, Auckland) and Daniel Ksepka (Connecticut, USA), used CT scans to create three-dimensional computer models. These computer models could then be used to make a 3D-printed replica which was presented to the Hamilton Junior Naturalists.

Kairuku waewaeroa line drawing, holotype fossil and scale comparison with an Emperor penguin.
The holotype specimen of Kairuku waewaeroa (WM 2006/1/1). Line drawing of specimen (A), photograph of the holotype in ventral view (B) and (C) scale comparison with the largest extant penguin species the Emperor Penguin (Aptenodytes forsteri), known bones shown in white. Note scale bar for (B) equals 4 cm. Picture credit: Giovanardi et al.

Giant Penguin with Long Legs

Co-author of the scientific paper, published in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, Dr Daniel Thomas (School of Natural and Computational Sciences at Massey University), stated the fossil dates from between 27.3 and 34.6 million years ago, a time when much of this area of North Island was underwater.

The Senior Lecturer in Zoology added:

“The penguin is similar to the Kairuku giant penguins first described from Otago but has much longer legs, which the researchers used to name the penguin waewaeroa – Te reo Māori for “long legs”. These longer legs would have made the penguin much taller than other Kairuku while it was walking on land, perhaps around 1.4 metres tall and may have influenced how fast it could swim or how deep it could dive.”

To read our article on a monster Palaeocene penguin from New Zealand: Monster Palaeocene Penguin from New Zealand.

The scientific paper: “A giant Oligocene fossil penguin from the North Island of New Zealand” by Simone Giovanardi, Daniel T. Ksepka and Daniel B. Thomas published in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology.

30 09, 2021

“Dinopedia” by Darren Naish

By | September 30th, 2021|Adobe CS5, Book Reviews, Dinosaur Fans, Main Page|0 Comments

Renowned dinosaur expert Darren Naish has produced a pocket guide to all things dinosaur. Entitled “Dinopedia” it’s a reader-friendly compendium packed full of facts about the Dinosauria. It is a handy A-Z updating dinosaur fans and those with a general interest in natural history on the fascinating and ever-changing world of dinosaur research.

The book has the feel of a real labour of love, the author sharing his passion for palaeontology with the general reader. Even the horned dinosaur on the front cover seems to be smiling.

Dinopedia front cover illustration
The front cover of Dinopedia features a horned dinosaur.

Princeton University Press

Published by Princeton University Press (UK release scheduled for October 5th, American release scheduled for November 30th, 2021), this is another in a long line of publications from this publisher with close links to the academic world. Darren himself is the author of many books, several on the bookshelves of Everything Dinosaur, but “Dinopedia” is a little different.

The hand-drawn illustrations give this compendium a very personal feel, as does the binding which is a figured cloth design, the binding decorated with embossed images and text. It takes the reader back to a simpler time, before the internet and cyberspace when textbooks were the only source of reference.

Subtitled “A Brief Compendium of Dinosaur Lore”, Darren gently guides the reader through the diverse and eclectic world of the Dinosauria. He outlines the different types of dinosaur focusing on the family or subfamily level of taxonomy with only a few specific genera such as Archaeopteryx and Deinonychus having specific entries. After all, these two theropods play an important role in helping to understand how our perceptions about dinosaurs have altered and this is a key theme of this book, the author providing an insight into how our understanding of dinosaur evolution has changed in recent times.

Drawing of a heterodontosaurid dinosaur
One of the illustrations by Darren Naish for his compendium of dinosaur-themed facts and figures “Dinopedia”. The hand-drawn figures give the book a very personal feel.

Dinosaurs and Popular Culture

As well as outlining the contribution made to palaeontology by a number of scientists, the author discusses the cultural impact of the Dinosauria. Sandwiched between a reprise on the ornithopod Iguanodon and an explanation of the K-Pg mass extinction event there is an entry dedicated to the film “Jurassic Park” which spawned a whole new generation of dinosaur fans.

The book is an ideal stocking filler for those obsessed with the “terrible lizards”, and we at Everything Dinosaur recommend it. “Dinopedia” would make a wonderful Christmas gift.

For more details about “Dinopedia” and to pre-order/purchase visit: Princeton University Press and search the website for “Dinopedia” or the author “Darren Naish”.

29 09, 2021

Two New Spinosaurids Described from the Isle of Wight

By | September 29th, 2021|Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal News Stories, Dinosaur Fans, Main Page, Palaeontological articles|0 Comments

Spinosaurids are like buses, you wait for ages for one to come along and then two arrive together. Today, we can announce that two new members of the Baryonychinae have been named and described from fossil remains found on the Isle of Wight. Named Ceratosuchops inferodios and Riparovenator milnerae, their discovery supports the idea of a European origin for the Spinosauridae and suggests that different types of fish-eating dinosaur could happily co-exist in the same palaeoenvironments.

Two new Isle of Wight spinosaurs
Two new species of spinosaurids described from the Isle of Wight Ceratosuchops inferodios (foreground) challenges a Riparovenator milnerae (background) over the carcase of an iguanodont. Pterosaurs flee a forest fire, whilst the dinosaurs squabble. The plant debris beds at Chilton Chine are dominated by charcoal, indicating that this area suffered numerous forest fires. Picture credit: Anthony Hutchings.

Spinosaurs Had Been Expected

Palaeontologists had long suspected that there were more spinosaurid dinosaurs awaiting discovery in the Lower Cretaceous Wealden Supergroup of southern England. The strata were deposited over large flood plains during the late Berriasian and early Aptian stages of the Early Cretaceous and fragmentary fossils, mostly isolated teeth representing spinosaurids have been found. These fossils were usually ascribed to Baryonyx, which was formally named and described in 1986 and provided scientists with the first significant evidence of the body plan and diet of these specialised theropods.

The fossil material was collected by Brian Foster from Yorkshire and Jeremy Lockwood who lives on the Isle of Wight in collaboration with several other local collectors and fossil enthusiasts, from the beach at Chilton Chine from 2013 to 2017, the rapidly eroding cliffs exposed the fossils and it is thanks to this dedicated group of amateur fossil hunters that these important specimens were saved from being washed away by the sea. More than fifty fossil bones were recovered from the site, including a partial tail which was excavated by a field team from the Dinosaur Isle Museum.

The Location of the Spinosaurus fossils on the Isle of Wight
The location of the dinosaur fossil finds. Picture credit: Jeremy Lockwood.

Analysis of Bones Undertaken by the University of Southampton

Analysis of the bones carried out at the University of Southampton and published this week in the journal “Scientific Reports” has led to the establishment of two new species of spinosaurids, which have been named Ceratosuchops inferodios and Riparovenator milnerae. Although related to Baryonyx (B. walkeri), these two new theropods might be more closely related to Suchomimus from Africa.

Scientists estimate that Ceratosuchops and Riparovenator were around 9 metres in length and their crocodilian-like skulls were about a metre long.

Isle of Wight spinosaurids skeletal drawings
Known material referred to the baryonychines Ceratosuchops inferodios (rear) and Riparovenator milnerae (front) recovered at Chilton Chine (Isle of Wight). White bones represent recovered elements. Note scale bar = 1 metre. Picture credit: Barker et al.

Phylogenetic and Bayesian statistical analysis suggests that Ceratosuchops and Riparovenator are sister taxa and more closely related to Suchomimus than they are to Baryonyx but work on the taxonomy of the Spinosauridae is hampered by a lack of fossil material permitting direct comparison between genera. Most palaeontologists split the Spinosauridae into two separate clades, the Spinosaurinae which includes taxa such as Spinosaurus, Ichthyovenator and Irritator and the Baryonychinae. Ceratosuchops inferodios and Riparovenator milnerae have been classified as baryonychids along with Baryonyx, Suchomimus and an as yet unnamed taxon from Portugal (ML 1190).

University of Southampton PhD student, Chris Barker, the lead author of the study commented:

“We found the skulls to differ not only from Baryonyx, but also one another, suggesting the UK housed a greater diversity of spinosaurids than previously thought.”

Ceratosuchops skull fossils and illustrative drawing
Ceratosuchops skull fossils and illustrative drawing with location of Chilton Chine on the Isle of Wight highlighted. Picture credit: Chris Barker and Dan Folkes.

Ceratosuchops inferodios

The first specimen has been named Ceratosuchops inferodios, which translates from the Latin as the “horned crocodile-faced hell heron”. With a series of low horns and bumps ornamenting the brow region the name also refers to the predator’s likely hunting style, which would be similar to that of a (terrifying) heron. Herons famously catch aquatic prey around the margins of waterways but their diet is far more flexible than is generally appreciated and can include terrestrial prey too.

Ceratosuchops premaxillae (lateral view)
Ceratosuchops premaxillae. Picture credit: Chris Barker.

Riparovenator milnerae

The second new species to be named Riparovenator milnerae, translates from the Latin as “Milner’s riverbank hunter”, the species name honours the highly influential British palaeontologist Angela Milner who sadly, passed away in August. Angela, along with her colleague Alan Charig, studied and named Baryonyx (B. walkeri) and her work at the London Natural History Museum has done much to improve our understanding of theropod dinosaurs. It seems a fitting tribute to Dr Milner, for someone who was so involved in helping us to understand Baryonychids that a member of the Baryonychinae should be named in her honour.

Riparovenator braincase and premaxilla
The braincase and the premaxilla of Riparovenator with skull drawing showing placement of the fossil bones. Picture credit: Chris Barker and Dan Folkes.

Many Large Predators in the Ecosystem

When looking at modern food webs, the number of large predators is normally limited by the available range of prey items and other resources such as space for territories and suitable breeding sites. Whilst there are many predators on the African plains, the apex predatory position tends to be occupied by just one species – Panthera leo (lion). In the forests of India, it is another big cat that occupies the apex predator position Panthera tigris (tigers). In several dinosaur dominated ecosystems another picture emerges, where at least two, equally sized and contemporaneous large theropods seem to occupy the apex predator role. Major dinosaur-fossil-bearing geological formations have revealed that several different types of large, carnivorous dinosaur co-existed.

Examples of Multiple Types of Theropod Dinosaur Predator from a Single Geological Formation

  • Dinosaur Park Formation (Canada – Upper Cretaceous) – Daspletosaurus and Gorgosaurus.
  • Morrison Formation (Western United States – Upper Jurassic) – Torvosaurus, Allosaurus, Saurophaganax, Ceratosaurus, Marshosaurus etc.
  • Lourinhã Formation (Portugal – Upper Jurassic) – Lourinhanosaurus, Torvosaurus, Allosaurus, Ceratosaurus, plus possible megalosauroids and abelisaurids.
  • Huincul Formation (Argentina – early Upper Cretaceous) – Mapusaurus, Gualicho, Skorpiovenator etc.
  • Shaximiao Formation (China – Middle to Upper Jurassic) – Sinraptor, Yangchuanosaurus, Gasosaurus, along with megalosauroids and other metriacanthosaurids.

Commenting on this phenomenon co-author of the scientific paper Dr David Hone (Queen Mary University) stated:

“It might sound odd to have two similar and closely related carnivores in an ecosystem, but this is actually very common for both dinosaurs and numerous living ecosystems.”

The presence of two or more spinosaurid taxa in the same geological unit (Wessex Formation) is therefore not without precedent and may in fact be typical. Furthermore, the Wessex Formation has revealed several other completely unrelated theropods that shared the environment with the spinosaurids, Eotyrannus (tyrannosauroid), the allosauroid Neovenator and at least one other, as yet unnamed large tetanuran.

Early spinosaurids may have been more generalist hunters, eating a varied diet, including fish and terrestrial prey. Only later did more specialised taxa adapted to underwater pursuit predation evolve, such as Spinosaurus. However, the degree of specialisation to an aquatic life in spinosaurids remains hotly debated and the evolutionary sequence by which aquatic adaptations came about remains unknown.

Swimming Spinosaurus 2020
A pair of spinosaurids (Spinosaurus aegyptiacus) hunting the giant, prehistoric sawfish Onchopristis. Spinosaurus aegyptiacus is one of the geologically youngest known spinosaurid. It may be untypical of the Spinosauridae, it having evolved to fill a specialised underwater pursuit predatory niche. Picture credit: Davide Bonadonna/National Geographic.

A European Origin for the Spinosauridae?

The discovery of these two new members of the Spinosauridae family and the subsequent analysis conducted by the research team supports the theory of a European origin for this family of theropods. They postulate that spinosaurs first evolved in Europe and dispersed into Asia and Western Gondwana (northern Africa and Brazil) during the first half of the Early Cretaceous. The range over which these types of dinosaurs roamed then begins to contract, by the Cenomanian faunal stage, spinosaurids are only present in north Africa.

Evolution of the Spinosauridae
A chart showing the temporal and geographic distribution of the Spinosauridae. Picture credit: Barker et al.

New fossil discoveries might change our understanding of the origins and eventual extinction of these enigmatic carnivorous dinosaurs, but based on the current fossil record, rising sea levels during the Cenomanian may have reduced the number of suitable habitats available. This may have contributed to the extinction of the Spinosauridae.

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

The scientific paper: “New spinosaurids from the Wessex Formation (Early Cretaceous, UK) and the European origins of Spinosauridae” by Chris T. Barker, David W. E. Hone, Darren Naish, Andrea Cau, Jeremy A. F. Lockwood, Brian Foster, Claire E. Clarkin, Philipp Schneider and Neil J. Gostling published in Scientific Reports.

28 09, 2021

Caldey’s Horned Dinosaur Illustration

By | September 28th, 2021|Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal Drawings, Dinosaur Fans, Main Page|0 Comments

Our thanks to dinosaur model fan and artist Caldey who sent into Everything Dinosaur a very colourful and striking illustration of a horned dinosaur. Caldey has been inspired by the paint schemes of several of the Beasts of the Mesozoic ceratopsians and we think that Caldey’s most recent artwork has been influenced by the Styracosaurus albertensis in this range.

Caldey's horned dinosaur drawing.
The very colourful horned dinosaur illustration produced by Caldey. Team members at Everything Dinosaur think that the centrosaurine illustrated is Styracosaurus. Picture credit: Caldey.

The skin covering the fenestrae in the fill have been coloured crimson and their colour almost matches the vivid tree depicted in the background.

An Impressive Horned Dinosaur Drawing

As crocodilians and birds which are the closest living relatives to the Dinosauria, have colour vision, most scientists are confident in the assertion that dinosaurs had colour vision too. The bold patterns and colours chosen by the illustrator would certainly make this horned dinosaur conspicuous, but if you want to attract a mate, or to obtain high social status within a herd, having a striking appearance is one way to go about it. Caldey’s colour scheme is bold with the white flashes on the flanks in stark contrast to the russet tones and greys of the rest of the body. The dinosaur also sports a tuft of bristles from the end of the ribs running towards the base of the tail, a nod to the integumentary covering associated with the distantly related Psittacosaurus which Caldey has also illustrated (see below).

A drrawing of Psittacosaurus.
Caldey’s illustration of the early member of the Ceratopsia – Psittacosaurus. Picture credit: Caldey.

When commenting upon Caldey’s latest, colourful ceratopsian a spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur stated:

“It is always a pleasure to receive illustrations and drawings from dinosaur fans. We have been very impressed with the artwork that we have been sent by Caldey. We have received artwork featuring several horned dinosaurs including Triceratops and Diabloceratops. We know that she has been inspired previously by the Beasts of the Mesozoic models, so we think her latest drawing was influenced by the Beasts of the Mesozoic Styracosaurus figure”

Beasts of the Mesozoic Styracosaurus model illustration
The back cover illustration of the Beasts of the Mesozoic Styracosaurus dinosaur model (S. albertensis). Did this colour scheme inspire the young artist?

Our thanks once again to Caldey for sending into Everything Dinosaur her prehistoric animal drawing.

27 09, 2021

Volcanoes Helped to Power the Rise of the Dinosaurs

By | September 27th, 2021|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal News Stories, Dinosaur Fans, Main Page, Palaeontological articles, Photos/Pictures of Fossils|0 Comments

The rise of the Dinosauria which led them to dominate terrestrial ecosystems for more than 150 million years was driven by environmental change caused by intense volcanism over 230 million years ago. That is the conclusion in a new study published today in the ” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences” (PNAS).

The Late Triassic Carnian Pluvial Episode (CPE) led to a huge rise in global temperature and humidity. This dramatic change had a significant impact on the development of animal and plant life, which was still recovering from the greatest mass extinction event known in the fossil record which had occurred at the end of the Permian, some 20 million years earlier.

The rise of the dinosaurs was powered by intense volcanic activity.
Ecological changes following intense volcanic activity during the Carnian Pluvial Episode 230 million years ago paved the way for dinosaurs to become the dominant terrestrial fauna. Picture credit: University of Birmingham.

The Evolution of Modern Conifers

The researchers, including experts from the University of Birmingham, discovered four distinct pulses of volcanic activity during this time in the Late Triassic. The most likely source of this volcanism being the Wrangellia Large Igneous Province, remnants of which can still be seen in Alaska, British Columbia and the Yukon (western North America).

Jason Hilton (Professor of Palaeobotany and Palaeoenvironments at the University of Birmingham’s School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences), a co-author of the study, explained:

“Within the space of two million years the world’s animal and plant life underwent major changes including selective extinctions in the marine realm and diversification of plant and animal groups on land. These events coincide with a remarkable interval of intense rainfall known as the Carnian Pluvial Episode.”

One of the major groups of plants to benefit from the dramatic climate change were cone-bearing seed plants (conifers). Ferns also benefitted and show an increase in numbers, range and species. Other archosaurs such as crocodyliforms show an increase in diversity and mammaliaforms, insects and turtles seem to have thrived as a result of this climate change.

Rising Carbon Dioxide Levels Driving Climate Change

Professor Hilton added:

“Our research shows, in a detailed record from a lake in North China, that this period can actually be resolved into four distinct events, each one driven by discrete pulses of powerful volcanic activity associated with enormous releases of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. These triggered an increase in global temperature and humidity.”

The scientists discovered that each phase of volcanic activity coincided with widescale disruption to the global carbon cycle. The higher levels of carbon dioxide produced led to major climate changes with a hotter, wetter climates predominating. The ancient lake deposits reveal that it became deeper but oxygen levels in the lake reduced and stifled animal life.

Geological events from a similar timeframe in Europe, Argentina, eastern Greenland, Morocco and North America, among other locations indicate that increased rainfall resulted in widespread expansion of drainage basins converging into lakes or swamps, rather than rivers or oceans.

Co-author of the paper, Dr Sarah Greene (Senior Lecturer in the School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Birmingham) added:

“Our results show that large volcanic eruptions can occur in multiple, discrete pulses demonstrating their powerful ability to alter the global carbon cycle, cause climate and hydrological disruption and drive evolutionary processes.”

Pollen spores and algae from the Carnian Pluvial Episode (China)
Example pollen, spores and algae from the Carnian Pluvial Episode in China that record climate and environmental change following massive volcanism. Individual specimens range from 20 to 120 μm in size. Picture credit: University of Birmingham.

The research team investigated terrestrial sediments from the ZJ-1 borehole in the Jiyuan Basin of North China. They used uranium-lead zircon dating, high-resolution chemostratigraphy, palynological and sedimentological data to correlate terrestrial conditions in the region with synchronous large-scale volcanic activity in North America.

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

The scientific paper: “Volcanically-driven lacustrine ecosystem changes during the Carnian Pluvial Episode (Late Triassic)” by Jing Lu, Peixin Zhang, Jacopo Dal Corso, Minfang Yang, Paul B. Wignall, Sarah E. Greene, Longyi Shao, Dan Lyu and Jason Hilton published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

26 09, 2021

William Updates his Allosaurus Review

By | September 26th, 2021|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur Products, Main Page, Product Reviews|0 Comments

Earlier on this year (summer 2021), knowledgeable dinosaur model fan and collector William sent into Everything Dinosaur his review of the recently introduced PNSO Allosaurus dinosaur replica (Paul the Allosaurus). William emailed to let us know that he wanted to add some additional comments about this new for 2021 theropod figure.

As always, Everything Dinosaur team members do their best to help and support their customers so we have published his Allosaurus themed comments on our blog.

PNSO Paul the Allosaurus dinosaur model
The stunning PNSO Paul the Allosaurus (anterior view). This PNSO theropod figure has proved to be very popular with dinosaur fans and model collectors and it has attracted rave reviews.

William’s PNSO Allosaurus Comments

William wanted to add:

“Paul’s head crest is the best of the best of any present-day Allosaurus model. Paul’s articulated jaw opens into a nice wide maw displaying his highly detailed mouth with tongue, teeth and nasal passages. The texture and execution of the skin folds around each of his glacier blue eyes makes each stand out even more in a great way.”

PNSO Allosaurus and Carcharodontosaurus dinosaur models
PNSO theropod models (top) Paul the Allosaurus and (bottom) Gamba the Carcharodontosaurus. William has reviewed a number of recent PNSO model introductions including Paul the Allosaurus and Gamba the Carcharodontosaurus.

To read William’s earlier review of the PNSO Allosaurus model: PNSO Paul the Allosaurus Reviewed.

Dinosaur Replica Attracts Rave Reviews

William is not the only Everything Dinosaur customer to have raved about the PNSO Allosaurus figure. For example, collectors @carlandhelen51 praised this figure commenting:

“I`ve been waiting for an accurate Allosaurus to compliment my 1/35th scale dinosaurs for a few years now, and wow, does this PSNO Allosaurus tick all the boxes! It is exceptional. I am so pleased with this model I can`t tell you! This is my eighth PSNO model and certainly won`t be my last. PSNO are definitely leading the way in creating accurate scale models so far.”

Everything Dinosaur has received several reviews from customers, all logged and verified by the independent ratings company Feefo.

PNSO the Allosaurus dinosaur model Feefo reviews
The PNSO Paul the Allosaurus dinosaur model has received 5-star customer reviews.

Full of praise for the PNSO figure, collector William added:

“In truth, this the first Allosaurus model that I really wished to add to my little collection, yes Paul is that great example of the Allosaurus family.”

Customers praise the PNSO Allosaurus dinosaur model
Some of the typical Feefo customer reviews for the PNSO Allosaurus dinosaur model. This new for 2021 theropod model has attracted high praise.

A spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur thanked William and all the Allosaurus review contributors and exclaimed:

“PNSO have produced lots of exciting new models and figures this year. The great news for collectors is that we have still to announce all the new PNSO figures for 2021. We hope to update fans of the PNSO prehistoric animal model range in the very near future.”

To view the current range of PNSO prehistoric animal models and figures in stock at Everything Dinosaur: PNSO Age of Dinosaurs.

25 09, 2021

Prehistoric Times Magazine Issue 139

By | September 25th, 2021|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal Drawings, Dinosaur Fans, Magazine Reviews, Main Page|0 Comments

Time to take a sneak peek at the front cover of the forthcoming edition of the quarterly magazine “Prehistoric Times”. It features a close-up view of the head of the African spinosaurid Suchomimus on the front cover.

Team members at Everything Dinosaur are grateful to magazine editor Mike Fredericks for sending us an image of the front cover of the next edition (issue 139) of this popular magazine.

Prehistoric Times magazine (issue 139)
The front cover of the next issue of “Prehistoric Times” magazine (issue 139) features a close-up view of the head of the spinosaurid Suchomimus. Picture credit: Mike Fredericks.

Issue 139 (Fall/Autumn 2021)

As well as Phil Hore’s articles on Suchomimus and placodonts (Henodus), we can look forward to the next instalment of Jon Lavas’s long-running series highlighting the work of the influential Czech artist Zdeněk Burian. In issue 139, the focus will be on Burian’s illustrations of Stegosaurus.

Stegosaurus stenops threatened by a pair of Antrodemus valens.
The classic depiction of a Late Jurassic scene by Burian (1950). Everything Dinosaur team members wonder whether this iconic image of the armoured dinosaur Stegosaurus will feature in issue 139 (fall/autumn 2021)? Picture credit: Zdeněk Burian.

The front cover text hints at an article by the talented polymath Tracy Lee Ford on dinosaur feathers. At this time, team members at Everything Dinosaur do not know whether dinosaur feathers are the subject of his regular “how to draw dinosaurs” feature of if this is an especially commissioned piece focusing on the various integumentary coverings associated with the Dinosauria. The article is bound to be most informative and we look forward to issue 139 dropping through our letter box sometime in the next few weeks.

To learn more about “Prehistoric Times” magazine and to subscribe: “Prehistoric Times” magazine.

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