The Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri model features in the latest customer newsletter from Everything Dinosaur. This new for 2021, 1:20 scale dinosaur model of a Brazilian dinosaur designed by a Brazilian design team has been given star billing in the latest Everything Dinosaur customer newsletter.
In Stock After Product Testing
As a responsible importer and supplier of prehistoric animal replicas, Everything Dinosaur took responsibility for obtaining a sample and then getting this product tested by an independent testing company (Eurofins). Once the test report had come back, Everything Dinosaur was able to legally import these excellent dinosaur models from China into the company’s UK warehouse. Customer safety is at the heart of the company’s business philosophy, once the test reports had been published and team members were able to adopt the report’s recommendations, the Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri stock could be brought into the UK.
Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri
The Irritator challengeri figure is the first dinosaur model to be made under the Dino Hazard brand by YvY Figures. The project had originally been set up as a crowdfunded operation. A spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur commented:
“We do appreciate how difficult setting up production has been in this current economic climate. We were able to work with the manufacturer and bring in a quantity of the available stock into our warehouse. By doing this, this stunning 1:20 scale figure will be available to many more collectors and dinosaur model enthusiasts”.
The Everything Dinosaur Customer Newsletter
The Everything Dinosaur customer newsletter is sent out periodically to newsletter subscribers. It is free and allows customers to be updated about new products, receive offers, take part in exclusive competitions and to be informed about product development.
Measuring around 37 cm in length and supplied with an optional display base and a model of a prehistoric lungfish, typical of the sort of prey this large theropod hunted, the arrival of the Dino Hazard Irritator challengeri figure has been greeted very enthusiastically by fans of prehistoric animal models.
Scientists writing in the on-line, open access, academic journal “PeerJ” have reported upon the discovery of over 100 dinosaur fossil footprints. The footprints represent theropod dinosaurs and they vary in size indicating that a variety of meat-eating dinosaurs co-existed in the late Early Jurassic of Yunnan Province, China.
Yunnan Province Dinosaurs
Yunnan Province in south-western China is famous for its dinosaur fossils, the majority of which are body fossils, but there have been several published papers detailing track sites and more trace fossils from this province are due to be reported upon. The theropod assemblage track site is located close to the village of Xiyang, Jinning County in central Yunnan. The strata in which the tracks are located come from the Lower Jurassic Fengjiahe Formation and represent a lakeside environment (lacustrine). The reddish mudstone deposits that contain the tracks also preserve mud cracks that suggest the area was subject to droughts. The palaeoenvironment is believed to have been humid and warm (sub-tropical to tropical).
The tracks have been known about for twenty years, but only recently has the site been extensively studied. Unfortunately, several prints had been lost to erosion prior to detailed analysis.
Solitary Coelophysoid and Tetanuran Theropods
The Xiyang track site preserves 120 exposed footprints made by solitary theropod dinosaurs as they visited the lakeside. It is the largest theropod track site in terms of the total number of prints found, described to date from Yunnan. The prints have been assigned to three broad groups based on their size, they indicate that a variety of theropods were present in the ancient ecosystem including coelophysoid as well as larger tetanuran theropods. The largest print from the site (XIY-48) measures 39 cm long and 40 cm wide. Large claw marks are associated with each digit of this print. Fossils of the six-metre-long theropod Sinosaurus triassicus (formerly Dilophosaurus sinensis), are known from this area. Sinosaurus fossils from Lower Jurassic Fengjiahe Formation have been found around 500 metres away from the track site, it has been speculated that the largest print could represent a track made by a Sinosaurus, although as it is a footprint, it has been assigned to the ichnogenus Kayentapus.
Classifying the Footprints
Although the size of any tracks left can be influenced by many factors, the research team conclude that at least three different kinds of theropods were visiting the site frequently. The three groups of prints that the tracks have been classified into are:
Morphotype A (>8 cm to <21 cm) resembling the ichnogenus Grallator.
Morphotype B (>27 cm to<30 cm) identified as the ichnospecies Kayentapus xiaohebaensis.
Morphotype C (39 cm) an isolated print referred to the ichnogenus Kayentapus.
Large Predator Dinosaurs Rare in the Early Jurassic
In Yunnan, the majority of dinosaur fossils from Lower Jurassic rocks represent sauropodomorphs. Whilst the tracks of sauropodomorphs can be mistakenly identified as theropod prints, the researchers who include Hongqing Li of Yunnan University and Claire Peyre de Fabrègues (Department of Biology, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, USA), as well as colleagues from Yuxi Museum (Yunnan Province) and the Chinese Academy of Sciences are confident that this site provides a useful record of the diversity of meat-eating dinosaurs present in this region during the late Early Jurassic. Large terrestrial predators (animals in excess of five metres in length), are rare in Early Jurassic ecosystems. Large tracks are scarce at this site, but not absent. Carnivorous dinosaurs of all sizes presumably co-existed in this palaeoenvironment and were regular visitors to the lakeside in search of food or potential prey.
The scientific paper: “The largest theropod track site in Yunnan, China: a footprint assemblage from the Lower Jurassic Fengjiahe Formation” by Hongqing Li, Claire Peyre de Fabrègues, Shundong Bi, Yi Wang and Xing Xu published in PeerJ.
In May of this year (2021), the excellent Wild Past Tethyshadros pair arrived at Everything Dinosaur. This dinosaur figure set featured two models of the dwarf hadrosauroid from north-eastern Italy, which was formally named and described in 2009.
As team members unpacked these models, a small cardboard box was discovered inside one of the cartons. At the time, this was thought to be part of the packing material, the box being thoughtfully added to ensure the boxes containing the 1:35 scale Tethyshadros models were fully protected. It was put to one side in our warehouse and remained unopened.
A team member came across the box this morning, curious as to what it might contain, it was carefully opened and inside a small model of the dwarf titanosaur Magyarosaurus was discovered.
A Magyarosaurus Figure
Stefan, the German entrepreneur behind the Wild Past brand had included the little model as a gift, a token of appreciation for the support and assistance provided by Everything Dinosaur.
A note from Stefan accompanying the Magyarosaurus model was also discovered, the note said:
“Additionally, to the delivery I send you a small thank you for your ongoing support. It is our little 1:35 Magyarosaurus resin model. Hope you like it”.
Dwarf Titanosaur from the Hateg Basin
The Magyarosaurus genus has one certain species assigned to it (M. dacus), although slightly larger fossil material has been assigned to a second species – Magyarosaurus hungaricus but these fossils might represent a separate taxon. The beautiful model demonstrates the skill and creativity of Wild Past. The team members at Everything Dinosaur were delighted to receive their gift.
A spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur commented:
“It was very kind of Stefan to include this token of appreciation amongst the Tethyshadros models. We have emailed him and thanked him for his gift and apologised for the tardiness of our response. We did not open the box containing the model and his note until this morning”.
Scientists have described the oldest theropod dinosaur from the UK. The dinosaur has been named Pendraig milnerae, the scientific name honours the dinosaur’s Welsh roots and recognises the contribution of Dr Angela Milner, who sadly passed away last August.
Everything Dinosaur recently blogged about the naming of two spinosaurids described from fragmentary fossils found on the Isle of Wight. The trivial name of one of these theropods, Riparovenator milnerae, also honours Dr Milner.
Ironically, the remains of Pendraig were already ancient fossils when the Isle of Wight spinosaurids roamed. The Pendraig fossils come from limestone fissure fills of the Pant-y-ffynnon Quarry in the Vale of Glamorgan (Wales). This infilled material, deposited in Carboniferous limestone is difficult to date, but it is thought that these fossils are between 215 and 201 million years old (late Norian, latest occurrence possibly late Rhaetian).
Misplaced Theropod Fossils
Writing in Royal Society Open Science, the researchers from the London Natural History Museum, the University of Birmingham and National Museums Scotland describe Pendraig milnerae based on an articulated pelvic girdle, sacrum and posterior dorsal vertebrae, and an associated left femur and by two referred specimens, comprising an isolated dorsal vertebra and a partial left ischium.
Co-author of the paper, Dr Susannah Maidment (London Natural History Museum), explained that the fossil material had been stored in a draw that contained crocodylomorphs. It was Dr Milner who was able to find the fossils within the vast Natural History Museum collection and to retrieve an unpublished PhD paper that had referred to them as part of a wider review of archosaurian remains associated with South Wales.
A phylogenetic analysis indicates that was a P. milnerae non-coelophysid coelophysoid and it represents the first-named, unambiguous theropod from the Triassic of the UK. The genus name translates from Middle Welsh as “chief dragon”. During the Late Triassic, the dinosaurs were not the dominant terrestrial animals that they were later to become. Discoveries of Triassic-aged theropods can help palaeontologists to better understand the evolution of these important tetrapods, the dinosaur lineage that led directly to modern birds.
Wales might be associated with dragons, but dinosaur discoveries are extremely rare in this part of the UK. Previously, only two dinosaur genera have been named – Pantydraco (P. cauducus) a basal sauropodomorph from a limestone fissure infill from the Pant-y-ffynnon Quarry and the coelophysoid Dracoraptor (D. hanigani) which was named and described in 2016 from fossils found near the Welsh town of Penarth.
An Insular Dwarf
The palaeoenvironment in which Pendraig lived was most likely an archipelago and species that live on small islands with limited resources can become smaller than their mainland relatives due to a phenomenon known as insular dwarfism.
Measuring around 75 cm to a metre in length P. milnerae was indeed small, a characteristic that it shares with a number of other vertebrates known from the same deposits.
Lead author of the paper, Dr Stephan Spiekman (London Natural History Museum), explained:
“Because the fossil reptiles from this area, including Pendraig, are all quite small-sized, we used statistical analyses to investigate whether Pendraig might have been an insular dwarf. The results indicate that Pendraig is indeed small, even for a theropod of that time period, but not uniquely so”.
Analysis of the fossil bones, indicate that the material does not represent a juvenile or very young animal. However, the fossils do represent an animal that was probably not fully grown when it died.
The researchers conclude that Pendraig may have been a dwarf form but as some other coelophysoid taxa also show a similar size reduction (based on femur bone length comparisons), it is not possible to say with certainty that this little Welsh, Triassic dinosaur was indeed an insular dwarf.
Dr Spiekman added:
“With this in mind, we need more evidence from more species to investigate the potential for island dwarfism in this area during that time, but if we could prove it, it would be the earliest known occurrence of this evolutionary phenomenon”.
The scientific paper: “Pendraig milnerae, a new small-sized coelophysoid theropod from the Late Triassic of Wales” by Stephan N. F. Spiekman, Martín D. Ezcurra, Richard J. Butler, Nicholas C. Fraser and Susannah C. R. Maidment published in Royal Society Open Science.
A new piece of public art has been unveiled within the direct sightline of a huge dinosaur sculpture that was destroyed by fire on Southsea Common ten years ago this week.
The installation consists of a bronze statue of the original “Southsea Dinosaur” sitting atop a plinth made from highly fossiliferous Portland Stone. In addition to key information about the work, a plaque on the sculpture’s plinth features a QR code which when scanned with a smartphone connects to an Augmented Reality experience, showing a digital rendering of the original, 22-metre-long dinosaur artwork seemingly in front of the user, on Southsea Common accompanied by the sounds of Portsmouth City Band, who attended the original launch. Viewers will also be able to visit Aspex’s website to visit a digital archive of memories contributed by the general public in honour of the original artwork including a video of the 2010 opening ceremony.
The Luna Park Dinosaur
In the summer of 2010, Everything Dinosaur team members reported upon the installation of a giant sculpture of a plant-eating dinosaur named Luna Park being erected on Southsea Common (Portsmouth, England). The massive statue, created by Studio Morison, stood 16 metres tall. It was so large that it could be seen from the Isle of Wight. Unfortunately, a fire in October 2010 completely destroyed this local landmark.
The art project was commissioned by Aspex, Portsmouth’s contemporary art gallery, currently celebrating its 40-year anniversary with a programme of contemporary art activities: “Aspex (life begins) at 40” at the gallery and on-line. The sculpture is the centrepiece of the gallery’s anniversary celebrations.
Commenting on the unveiling of the artwork to commemorate the original Southsea dinosaur, Joanne Bushell (Director of Aspex), stated:
“We are thrilled to be able to share this work – over a decade after the original Luna Park was installed on Southsea Common. The artwork is firmly and fondly lodged in the memories of local people and lives on through younger generations as a kind of myth or local legend. I stand for language. I speak for truth. I shout for history is part of Portsmouth’s heritage and we are delighted to be unveiling it this Autumn. It is hoped that the piece will generate new memories for people who live here and those visiting Portsmouth”.
A new species of horned dinosaur has been named and described from fossils found in New Mexico. The dinosaur has been named Sierraceratops turneri and it was distantly related to Triceratops.
The new horned dinosaur classified as a member of the Chasmosaurinae, roamed New Mexico approximately 72 million years ago (latest Campanian–Maastrichtian). Sierraceratops adds to the diversity and disparity of the Chasmosaurinae in the Late Cretaceous. This discovery provides supporting evidence for the hypothesis of Laramidian endemism – the idea that species were restricted to specific regions. Together with Sierraceratops, the Hall Lake Formation dinosaur fauna suggests that the latest Cretaceous of southern Laramidia was characterised by endemic clades and distinct dinosaur communities.
From Sierra County, New Mexico
The first fossil material associated with this new horned dinosaur, was discovered in 1997 by Greg H. Mack of New Mexico State University whilst undertaking a geological survey. Most of the fossils were collected from the surface, having already weathered out of the surrounding rock, but a field team from the New Mexico Museum of Natural History was despatched and additional fossils were found. The remainder of the fossil material that led to the naming of Sierraceratops was excavated between 2014-2016 by other field teams sent out to the site by the New Mexico Museum of Natural History. The fossils include elements from the skull and jaws, along with two neckbones (cervicals), two dorsal vertebrae, the sacrum, scapulocoracoid, the ilium and limb bones. The genus name honours Sierra County where the fossils were found, whilst the species name is a tribute to Mr Ted Turner, the founder of the Cable News Network (CNN) who owned the land where the fossils were collected.
Distinct Dinosaur Regional Communities
Phylogenetic analysis suggests that Sierraceratops is a sister taxon to Bravoceratops and Coahuilaceratops, forming part of a clade endemic to the southwestern United States and Mexico. Sierraceratops adds to the diversity and disparity of the Chasmosaurinae in the Late Cretaceous and provides supporting evidence for the hypothesis of Laramidian endemism. Dinosaur fossils from the Hall Lake Formation suggest that the dinosaur biota of southern Laramida was characterised by distinct dinosaur communities. Similar types of dinosaurs could be found in other areas, but the genera were distinctive.
Recent Discoveries of Horned Dinosaurs from New Mexico
New Mexico has proved to be a happy hunting ground for new ceratopsid discoveries in recent years. For example, some of the authors of the Sierraceratops paper also worked on the publication describing Menefeeceratops (M. sealeyi), from the Menefee Formation. Menefeeceratops roamed New Mexico some 10 million years before Sierraceratops evolved. As Menefeeceratops has been classified as a member of the Centrosaurinae and Sierraceratops is regarded as a chasmosaurine, these two horned dinosaurs were only distantly related.
Sierraceratops turneri – Tyrannosaurs and Titanosaurs
Based on a comparison with better-known chasmosaurine fossil specimens, Sierraceratops is estimated to have measured around five metres in length. Its skull would have been around 1.5 metres long. The scientists behind this research, including Dr Nicholas Longrich (senior lecturer in the Department of Biology and Biochemistry at the University of Bath), predict that several more new dinosaurs will be described from Laramidia.
Sierraceratops shared its lush, floodplain and swamp environment with other dinosaurs including giant titanosaurs and predatory tyrannosaurids. It also highly likely that Sierraceratops was contemporaneous with other plant-eating dinosaurs such as hadrosaurids and ankylosaurids. Fossil evidence for both armoured dinosaurs and duck-billed dinosaurs have been found in other Hall Lake Formation sediments but their stratigraphical relationship to the Sierraceratops material remains undetermined.
Everything Dinosaur acknowledges the assistance of a media release from the University of Bath in the compilation of this article.
The scientific paper: “Sierraceratops turneri, a new chasmosaurine ceratopsid from the Hall Lake Formation (Upper Cretaceous) of south-central New Mexico” by Sebastian G. Dalman, Spencer G Lucas, Steven E. Jasinski and Nicholas R. Longrich published in Cretaceous Research.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
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.
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.”
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 Age of Dinosaurs Prehistoric Animal Models
To view the range of PNSO prehistoric animal models available from Everything Dinosaur: PNSO Age of Dinosaurs.
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 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.
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.”
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.
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.
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.
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.”
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.