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6 03, 2021

Troodontids in Europe

By | March 6th, 2021|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal News Stories, Dinosaur Fans, Main Page, Palaeontological articles, Photos/Pictures of Fossils|0 Comments

A team of international scientists including Steve Brusatte (University of Edinburgh), have confirmed the presence of troodontids in the Late Cretaceous of Europe. A new species of troodontid has been erected based on the discovery of a single metatarsal bone (the second metatarsal bone from the right foot), from Late Cretaceous strata in the Talarn Formation exposed at the Sant Romà d’Abella site in the southern Pyrenean region of Spain. This new dinosaur has been named Tamarro insperatus.

Tamarro insperatus Life Reconstruction
A life reconstruction of the first troodontid confirmed from the Late Cretaceous of Europe Tamarro insperatus.

Picture Credit: Oscar Sanisidro

Found in 2003

The single fossil bone indicating the presence of troodontids in Europe was found in September 2003 by a team of palaeontologists from the Museu de la Conca Dellà (Lleida, Isona, Spain) at the Sant Romà d’Abella site (Spain). It was found in fluvial floodplain deposits believed to have been laid down just 200,000 years or so before the K-Pg mass extinction event.

The fossil bone was found in the same horizon as plant fossils and the type specimen of the lambeosaurine Pararhabdodon isonensis, the metatarsal was found in close proximity to the Pararhabdodon type specimen, these are the only two vertebrates known from this site.

The Dinosaurs from the Late Cretaceous of Europe

During the Late Cretaceous, high sea levels ensured that much of the European landmass we know today was underwater. Numerous islands existed, creating an extensive archipelago and several dinosaurs associated with these islands exhibit dwarfism or other unusual features associated with isolated ecosystems. Very little is known about the Theropoda that inhabited these islands. For example, the presence of troodontids in Europe has been debated for a long time. Several troodontid-like and Paronychodon teeth (a nomen dubium taxa referred by some to the Troodontidae), were recovered from the Campanian and Maastrichtian deposits of the ancient Hateg (Romania) and Ibero-Armorican (Portugal, France and Spain) islands, but this fossil bone provides definitive, unequivocal proof of these theropods being present in the Late Cretaceous of Europe.

The Single Fossil Bone (Metatarsal) of Tamarro insperatus
Views of the second metatarsal (metatarsal II from the right foot), plus line drawing showing the skeletal position of the bone.

Picture Credit: Albert G. Sellés (Institut Català de Paleontologia Miquel Crusafon/Museu de la Conca Dellà)

A Basal Troodontid with Asian Origins

An analysis of the bone and a phylogenetic assessment suggests that Tamarro is a basal member of the Troodontidae family and most likely a representative of the Asian subfamily the Jinfengopteryginae. The research team speculate on how a dinosaur with relatives in Asia could have become established in Europe. Maastrichtian troodontids like Tamarro could have reached Europe during the Cenomanian faunal stage and persisted on these islands until the K-Pg extinction event.

Estimated at around two metres in length Tamarro is around twice the size of other related troodontids. A close examination of the bone (cross-sectional histology), reveals that the metatarsal came from a subadult animal that was growing rapidly. Although troodontids are known to have fast growth rates, Tamarro seemed to be growing much quicker than other members of the Troodontidae, perhaps reaching full maturity in around two years.

Tamarro insperatus Growth Rate
Growth rate of Tamarro insperatus compared to other members of the Maniraptora. When compared to other taxa from the group of dinosaurs most closely related to birds (including Aves), Tamarro has a rapid growth rate reaching a subadult state in around one year.

The genus name is derived from the Catalan word “Tamarro” which refers to a small, mythical creature from local folklore. The species or trivial name “insperatus” is from the Latin for unexpected, a reference to the unexpected discovery of the fossil bone.

The scientific paper: “A fast-growing basal troodontid (Dinosauria: Theropoda) from the latest Cretaceous of Europe” by Albert G. Sellés, Bernat Vila, Stephen L. Brusatte, Philip J. Currie and Àngel Galobart published in Scientific Reports.

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5 03, 2021

Pinacosaurus Scale Drawing

By | March 5th, 2021|Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal Drawings, Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur News and Updates, Everything Dinosaur Products, Main Page, Press Releases|0 Comments

As we are preparing for the arrival of the latest batch of new for 2021 PNSO prehistoric animal models team members at Everything Dinosaur have been busy completing their Pinacosaurus fact sheet that will be sent out with sales of this armoured dinosaur model.

Bart the PNSO Pinacosaurus Dinosaur Model

PNSO Bart the Pinacosaurus dinosaur model (lateral view).
The new for 2021 PNSO Bart the Pinacosaurus dinosaur model (lateral view). This model is expected in stock at Everything Dinosaur on March 8th, 2021.

PNSO Pinacosaurus grangeri

Pronounced “pin-ack-oh-sore-us”, this Late Cretaceous armoured dinosaur is one of the best known of all the members of the Ankylosauridae family. Measuring up to five metres in length, this herbivorous, armoured dinosaur is known from numerous specimens representing juveniles and adult animals.

Everything Dinosaur’s Scale Drawing of Pinacosaurus

Pinacosaurus scale drawing.
Everything Dinosaur’s scale drawing of the armoured dinosaur from Asia – Pinacosaurus grangeri. The dinosaur is estimated to have measured up to five metres in length and weighed approximately 1.9 tonnes, that is about as heavy as an extant Indian rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis).

What Other PNSO Figures are Due in Stock?

About a dozen or so PNSO prehistoric animal figures are due to arrive at Everything Dinosaur’s new warehouse on Monday (8th March 2021). Team members are not quite sure when the figures will arrive but they are all on standby to help get them unloaded and on-line as quickly as possible.

All eight of the new for 2021 dinosaur models should be on this shipment plus some of the earlier models that were available at the factory when the container was being made ready for sending to the docks.

PNSO Pinacosaurus Dinosaur Model (Dorsal View)

PNSO Bart the Pinacosaurus dinosaur model (dorsal view).
The new for 2021 PNSO Bart the Pinacosaurus dinosaur model (dorsal view). The beautifully detailed armour on this model can be clearly seen. This figure is expected in stock at Everything Dinosaur within 72-hours (Monday, 8th March 2021).

PNSO Age of Dinosaurs (Prehistoric Animal Figures)

PNSO have rapidly built an excellent reputation for their dinosaur and prehistoric animal models. Everything Dinosaur has worked with this Chinese company for many years and a spokesperson from the UK-based specialist mail order company stated:

“We are expecting A-Shu the Qianzhousaurus, Perez the Machairoceratops, along with the other new horned dinosaur figure A-Qi the Sinoceratops, plus Domingo the Carnotaurus and the new Wilson T. rex figure. In addition, the three new armoured dinosaurs Isaac the Sauropelta, Rosana the Miragaia and of course Bart the Pinacosaurus.”

However, given all the current difficulties with global logistics at the moment, team members will be thoroughly checking over the shipment prior to putting these models on-line.

The spokesperson added:

“There are so many problems with shipping goods at the moment. For example, this container was held at the UK port for several days simply because of the amount of congestion at the dockside. The inspection by UK Customs and Trading Standards did not hold up the shipment for too long, but we know that a number of the cartons will have been opened as part of the checking process so we will be spending time once the delivery has arrived in sorting out the boxes before these models can be put into our on-line shop.”

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

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4 03, 2021

A Dinosaur Book Recommendation for World Book Day

By | March 4th, 2021|Adobe CS5, Book Reviews, Dinosaur Fans, Main Page|0 Comments

As today (4th March 2021), is recognised in many countries as World Book Day, team members at Everything Dinosaur have been busy posting up on social media book recommendations for those readers interested in the Dinosauria and other archosaurs.

“The Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs – The Sauropods”

The Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs - The Sauropods
The Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs – The Sauropods front cover. A superb book all about the Sauropodomorpha and their near relatives by Rubén Molina-Pérez and Asier Larramendi.

Crammed with Fascinating Dinosaur Facts

The Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs, the sauropod edition, is packed full of fascinating information and it has been laid out in an easy to follow format with copious illustrations and lots of diagrams to help elucidate the text.

Packed with Super Sauropod Facts and Figures

The Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs - The Sauropods is crammed full of facts.
Lots of fascinating facts about the sauropods inside the book.

Written by Rubén Molina-Pérez and Asier Larramendi, the book documents the rise of the long-necked giants from their much smaller ancestral forms, classifies and characterises them and even examines their impact on modern culture. From viewing them as slow and sluggish reptiles inevitably doomed to extinction, the authors document the fossil evidence that shows how well-adapted these dinosaurs were to their environment.

How we View Sauropods Has Changed

The History and Cultural Significance of Sauropods
How society views the sauropods has changed. From viewing them as amphibious, living in lakes and rivers, to recognising them as land animals no longer considered slow, clumsy creatures that were doomed to extinction.

A spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur commented:

“This is a stunning and comprehensive guide to the Sauropodomorpha aimed at dinosaur enthusiasts. Expect lots of information about famous dinosaurs such as Brachiosaurus, Apatosaurus and Mamenchisaurus plus lots of insights into their lives and behaviours.”

Amazing Dinosaur Illustrations

Pampadromeus - perhaps the smallest known Sauropodomorpha
Pampadromaeus – perhaps the smallest known sauropodomorph. The book provides plenty of information on some of the less well-known dinosaurs such as the basal sauropodomorph Pampadromaeus barberenai – regarded as one of the smallest members sub-order of the Dinosauria.

Documenting the Dinosauria

Authors Rubén Molina-Pérez and Asier Larramendi demonstrate their extensive knowledge by providing information often omitted from other books about long-necked dinosaurs. For example, as well as looking at dinosaur diets, the writers examine related facets such as sauropod bite forces.

The Book Examines the Bite Forces of Sauropods such as Diplodocus

Diplodocus Bite Force
The book provides lots of fascinating information on the sauropods such as details of estimated bite force by genera.

Highly Recommended

This is a one-of-a-kind compendium that covers all the known sauropod species at the time of publication, plus it provides details on one or two that have yet to be formally described.

For dinosaur fans, this book is highly recommended.

To read our comprehensive review of the sister volume that documents the Theropoda: The Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs – the Theropods.

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3 03, 2021

Ninjatitan zapatai the Earliest Known Titanosaur

By | March 3rd, 2021|Dinosaur Fans, Main Page, Palaeontological articles, Photos/Pictures of Fossils|0 Comments

Scientists have identified a new species of titanosaur from fragmentary fossil remains found in northern Patagonia (Argentina). Readers of Everything Dinosaur’s blog will know that there have been many amazing titanosaur fossil discoveries from Argentina featured on this site. Some of the largest dinosaurs known to science have been described from fossil material found in Patagonia, giants such Argentinosaurus, Patagotitan and Dreadnoughtus as well as slightly smaller ones, for example Sarmientosaurus (S. musacchioi)* with its beautifully preserved skull and the recently described Punatitan and Bravasaurus**.

However, the new species named Ninjatitan zapatai, is perhaps much more significant when it comes to the Titanosauria clade. The fossils from this titanosaur come from the Lower Cretaceous Bajada Colorada Formation located in Neuquén Province. Ninjatitan roamed Argentina around 140 million years ago, as such it could be the earliest known titanosaur sauropod, further strengthening the theory that these types of sauropod originated from South America.

A Life Reconstruction of Ninjatitan zapatai

Ninjatitan Life Reconstruction
Ninjatitan zapatai life reconstruction.

Picture Credit: Jorge A. González courtesy of Fundación Azara.

Known from Fragmentary Remains

In 2014, Jonatan Aroca, a technician at the Ernesto Bachmann Municipal Museum, was exploring a rocky outcrop close to the Limay River between the towns of Picún Leufú and Piedra del Águila (Neuquén Province), when he spotted a large fossil bone eroding out of the sediments. This fossil proved to be the scapula (shoulder blade) and subsequent excavations revealed two dorsal vertebrae, a fibula, part of the femur and a tail bone. After the materials had been extracted and technically prepared and cleaned in the laboratory of the Chocón Museum, it was determined that this was a new species of sauropod titanosaur.

The Scapula (Shoulder Blade) is Excavated

Ninjatitan Scapula Being Excavated
The scapula of Ninjatitan is slowly and carefully excavated.

Picture Credit: Jorge A. González courtesy of Fundación Azara.

The Origin of the Titanosauria

In recent years, several studies have postulated that the origin of the Titanosauria clade would have been in the early Cretaceous (about 140 million years ago) and somewhere in South America. However, until now, these hypotheses were not clearly supported by fossil evidence, but were the results of theoretical studies with statistical models.

Lead author of the scientific paper, Pablo Gallina, a CONICET (Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas), palaeontologist from the Palaeontology Area of the Azara Foundation and Maimonides University commented:

“This finding allows us to reinforce the idea that titanosaurs appeared in South America. It was thought that they might have first appeared there, but there was no real evidence, with fossils, to prove it. This finding gives more support to this theory.”

The Stunning Landscape of the Limay River

The Lower Cretaceous Bajada Colorada Formation (Argentina)
The Lower Cretaceous Bajada Colorada Formation in Neuquén Province, Argentina. The rocks from which the Ninjatitan fossil material came are believed to be around 140 million years old.

Picture Credit: Jorge A. González courtesy of Fundación Azara.

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

At an estimated 20 metres in length Ninjatitan may not be the largest titanosaur from Argentina, but because of its age, it might just prove to be one of the most important South American titanosaur discoveries ever made.

Read our article about Sarmientosaurus* here: A New Late Cretaceous Titanosaur from Patagonia – Sarmientosaurus.

For our recent article on the titanosaurs Punatitan and Bravasaurus** click here: Two New South American Titanosaurs.

The scientific paper: “The Earliest Known Titanosaur Sauropod Dinosaur” by Pablo Ariel Gallina, Juan Ignacio Canale and José Luis Carballido published in Ameghiniana.

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2 03, 2021

Why So Few Medium-sized Carnivorous Dinosaurs?

By | March 2nd, 2021|Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal News Stories, Dinosaur Fans, Main Page, Palaeontological articles|0 Comments

Researchers from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and University of New Mexico have come up with a novel explanation as to why there are so few medium-sized carnivorous dinosaurs found in the fossil record.

In a scientific paper published in the academic journal “Science” they propose that sub-adults and juveniles of much larger species out-competed similarly sized adults of medium-sized meat-eating dinosaurs resulting in a transformation of dinosaur community populations.

Comparing Mammalian and Dinosaurian Carnivorous Communities

Comparing Mammalian Predator Communities to Dinosaur Predator Communities
Did juvenile and sub-adult hypercarnivores drive out the medium-sized meat-eaters?

Picture Credit: Schroeder et al (Science)

Communities with Megatheropods Lacked Medium-sized Carnivores

The researchers identified that based on the known fossil record, communities of dinosaurs with super-sized theropods such as the Dinosaur Provincial Park fauna (Campanian faunal stage of the Late Cretaceous), lacked medium-sized carnivorous dinosaurs in the size range from 100 kilograms to 1,000 kilograms.

In contrast, modern mammalian communities such as that which exists on the savannah of Kruger National Park in South Africa have predators in a range of sizes, small ones such as mongooses, medium-sized species such as wild dogs as well as mega-carnivores such as leopards and lions. Each meat-eating species is able to exploit a food resource (prey animals). The distinctive biology of the Dinosauria wherein, all predators hatched from eggs so started out as tiny in size perhaps less than ten kilogrammes for even the largest tyrannosaurids, may have led to a fundamental shift in predator community dynamics.

Rapidly growing juveniles and sub-adults of the larger species could have out-competed the fully grown medium-sized carnivores (mesocarnivores).

Gorgosaurus libratus – An Apex Predator of the Dinosaur Park Formation

Gorgosaurus libratus illustrated.
Did juvenile and sub-adult tyrannosaurids such as Gorgosaurus and Daspletosaurus out-compete mesocarnivores?

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Lead author PhD student Katlin Schroeder (University of New Mexico), explained:
“Dinosaur communities were like shopping malls on a Saturday afternoon — jam-packed with teenagers. They made up a significant portion of the individuals in a species and would have had a very real impact on the resources available in communities.”

Compiling Physiological Data on Dinosaur Dominated Ecosystems

The researchers compiled physiological and fossil data on more than 550 different dinosaur species from 43 different dinosaur dominated ecosystems. They found that there was an absence of mesocarnivores. The scientists concluded that it was the teenage megatheropods that created and filled this gap in the community. After dividing this 100 to 1,000 kilogram gap into different weight categories, they found that juvenile megatheropods made up more than 50% of the total dinosaur biomass in every weight class. This is like a boxer destined to be the heavyweight champion dominating the bantam, lightweight and middleweight classes during their rise to the top.

Abelisaurids Also Drove out Mesocarnivores

A drawing of a dinosaur (Abelisaurus).
A typical large theropod dinosaur. Like the Tyrannosauridae, abelisaurs were the megatheropods in a number of dinosaur communities that lacked mesocarnivores.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Driving Out the Medium-sized Meat-eaters

Although herbivorous dinosaurs were found in a range of different body sizes, including medium-sized ones, the team concluded that when it came to the meat-eaters, the way in which large carnivorous dinosaurs grew was an important factor that helped shape dinosaur community structure and diversity.

Co-author of the study, Kate Lyons (Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln), added that the research:

“Essentially says that megatheropods were consuming 50% or more of the energy available to dinosaurs at a respective body size, leaving very little for other species to consume. If they were consuming the majority of the energy at that body size, then they were going to be outcompeting anything else that might try to feed at that size, as well.”

A Difference in Jurassic and Cretaceous Dinosaur Communities

It was noted that there was a subtle difference between dinosaur communities from the Jurassic with those from the Cretaceous. Generally, there were smaller gaps in the size range of carnivorous dinosaurs during the Jurassic when compared to the size gap seen in later communities dating from the Cretaceous.

Katlin Schroeder postulated that this difference came about because:

“Jurassic megatheropods don’t change as much, the teenagers are more like the adults, which leaves more room in the community for multiple families of megatheropods as well as some smaller carnivores. The Cretaceous, on the other hand, is completely dominated by tyrannosaurs and abelisaurs, which change a lot as they grow.”

Jurassic Ecosystems

T. gurneyi.
Torvosaurus gurneyi a top predator of Portugal from the Late Jurassic but there were also mesocarnivores in this ecosystem too such as Lourinhanosaurus, Ceratosaurus and Lusovenator.

Picture Credit: Sergey Krasovskiy

The scientific paper: “The influence of juvenile dinosaurs on community structure and diversity” by Katlin Schroeder, S. Kathleen Lyons and Felisa A. Smith published in Science.

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1 03, 2021

Pre-order Rebor Carnotaurus and Rebor Ekrixinatosaurus

By | March 1st, 2021|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur News and Updates, Everything Dinosaur Products, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products, Press Releases|0 Comments

Pre-order Rebor Carnotaurus and Rebor Ekrixinatosaurus

The Rebor Ekrixinatosaurus “Epitaph” museum class dinosaur model and the Rebor Carnotaurus rex “Crimson King Requiem” plain variant museum class replica are available to pre-order from Everything Dinosaur.  Two fantastic models of Late Cretaceous, South American abelisaurid dinosaurs are available for pre-order.  Both figures are in approximately 1/35th scale and each wonderful replica measures around forty-one centimetres in length.

The Rebor “Crimson King Requiem” Carnotaurus Model is Available for Pre-order

The Rebor Carnotaurus rex "Crimson King Requiem".

The Rebor Carnotaurus rex “Crimson King Requiem” plain variant museum class dinosaur model (right lateral view).

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

A Requiem for the “Crimson King”

When Everything Dinosaur announced that the original Rebor Carnotaurus model had been withdrawn and was out of production, we promised all those fans of the Rebor range who had joined our waitlist for this replica that we would contact them and offer them an alternative.  This is the figure we had in mind, a magnificent 1:35 scale model of Carnotaurus with such a striking, vibrant colour scheme.  This figure is viewed by Rebor as a replacement for the original Rebor Carnotaurus, hence the name “Crimson King Requiem”.

The Original Rebor “Crimson King” Carnotaurus (C. sastrei)

Rebor Carnotaurus dinosaur model.

The original Rebor “Crimson King” Carnotaurus dinosaur model, this figure has been retired for some time and it has been effectively replaced by “Crimson King Requiem”.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

This figure is expected to be in stock at Everything Dinosaur in the summer, around late June or perhaps July (2021).

A Close-up View of the New for 2021 Rebor Carnotaurus Dinosaur Model

Rebor Carnotaurus rex "Crimson King Requiem".

Carnotaurus rex “Crimson King Requiem” plain variant museum class dinosaur model.  This figure has an articulated lower jaw.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The beautifully detailed head can be seen in the photograph (above) and we can confirm that this model will have an articulated lower jaw.

A Requiem for a Carnotaurus

Rebor Carnotaurus rex "Crimson King Requiem" plain variant museum class model.

The Rebor Carnotaurus rex “Crimson King Requiem” plain variant museum class replica.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Rebor Ekrixinatosaurus “Epitaph” Museum Class Dinosaur Model

The second abelisaurid from Rebor that we have made available for pre-order is the Rebor Ekrixinatosaurus “Epitaph” museum class dinosaur model.  It is ironic that these two figures are available to pre-order today, as March 1st is Saint David’s Day.  Saint David is the patron saint of Wales and the dragon is one of the national symbols of this country.

Stomping into View A Rebor 1:35 Scale Ekrixinatosaurus “Epitaph” Dinosaur Model

The Rebor 1:35 scale Ekrixinatosaurus “Epitaph” dinosaur figure.

The Rebor 1:35 scale Ekrixinatosaurus “Epitaph” dinosaur model.  This model also has an articulated jaw.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Named and formally described in 2004, the fossilised remains of Ekrixinatosaurus helped palaeontologists to better understand the enigmatic Abelisauridae.  Ekrixinatosaurus (pronounced Ek-riks-in-at-oh-sore-us), is estimated to have measured around 6.5 to perhaps 7.5 metres in length.  It was approximately the same size as Carnotaurus sastrei, hence the models are both in 1/35 th scale and the same size.

The Rebor Ekrixinatosaurus Dinosaur Model

ebor Ekrixinatosaurus “Epitaph” museum class dinosaur model.

The Rebor Ekrixinatosaurus “Epitaph” museum class dinosaur model (right lateral view).

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

A spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur commented:

“These two South American theropod dinosaurs look fantastic!  We congratulate Rebor for introducing some really exciting dinosaur models.”

Rebor Carnotaurus and Ekrixinatosaurus Available for Pre-order

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

That’s right:

  • No fees to pay
  • No deposit
  • No upfront costs
  • No surcharges

Just pre-order your model and when they become available (estimated 1st July 2021), you will be contacted and asked to complete your purchase or if you have selected to pay by credit/debit card, only when the figure is in stock will the transaction be completed.

To pre-order these two wonderful new Rebor models: Find Rebor Dinosaur Models to Pre-order Here.

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28 02, 2021

Caldey’s Zuniceratops

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

Caldey’s Zuniceratops Illustration

Our thanks to budding palaeo-artist Caldey who sent into Everything Dinosaur her illustration of the Beasts of the Mesozoic Zuniceratops figure and what a splendid illustration it is!  We have received numerous horned dinosaur drawings from Caldey in recent months, we can now add her Zuniceratops christopheri artwork to our collection.

Caldey’s Illustration of Zuniceratops christopheri

Zuniceratops christopheri by Caldey

A beautiful illustration of the Late Cretaceous horned dinosaur Zuniceratops (Z. christopheri) by Caldey.  Previously, Caldey has dispatched to Everything Dinosaur drawings of Diabloceratops, Medusaceratops, Triceratops and other horned dinosaurs.

Picture Credit: Caldey

The colourful and enigmatic Zuniceratops with its vivid facial markings and flashes of blue is cleverly contrasted with the monochrome foreground and vegetation that Caldey has incorporated into her drawing.  A tuft of bristle-like hairs on the rump of this dinosaur has also been added.  Although there is no fossil evidence to indicate whether Zuniceratops possessed such a feature, it is known in other members of the Ceratopsia, such as Psittacosaurus, a dinosaur that Caldey has also illustrated.

Zuniceratops is regarded as a transitional form of horned dinosaur.  It roamed what was to become New Mexico around ninety million years ago and its fossil remains show a mix of primitive and more derived anatomical traits, so why not give it bristles too?

Caldey’s Illustration of Psittacosaurus

A drrawing of Psittacosaurus.

Caldey’s illustration of the early member of the Ceratopsia – Psittacosaurus.  There is evidence to suggest that this small, plant-eating dinosaur had a fan of bristle-like structures at the base of its tail.  Palaeontologists remain uncertain as to their function.

Picture Credit: Caldey

The artist has carefully picked out and highlighted the individual scales on the Zuniceratops.  This is particularly evident on the head, where even the tiny jugal (cheek horn) has been illustrated.

A Close-up View of the Head of the Zuniceratops

A close-up of the head of Zuniceratops as illustrated by Caldey.

The individual scales have been carefully picked out and highlighted by the artist.

Picture Credit: Caldey

A spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur commented:

“It is always a pleasure to receive artwork and we do get lots of pictures sent into us.  We do look at them all and we are really grateful for all that we receive.  Our congratulations to Caldey for her splendid drawing of Zuniceratops.”

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27 02, 2021

New for 2021 Safari Ltd Models in Stock

By | February 27th, 2021|Dinosaur Fans, Everything Dinosaur News and Updates, Everything Dinosaur Products, Main Page, Photos of Everything Dinosaur Products, Press Releases|0 Comments

New for 2021 Safari Ltd Models in Stock

The first of the new for 2021 Safari Ltd prehistoric animal models are in stock at Everything Dinosaur.  The Wild Safari Prehistoric World Baryonyx and the Mythical Realms armoured Triceratops have arrived at our warehouse.  These figures were due in March, but we were able to get these two models a little earlier than scheduled.  Safari Ltd will introduce a total of five new models this year, three dinosaurs and two armoured dinosaurs in the Mythical Realms series.

The Daspletosaurus, quadrupedal Spinosaurus and the armoured Tyrannosaurus rex in the Mythical Realm series are due to arrive in April, but as with the armoured Triceratops and the Baryonyx models, Everything Dinosaur team members will try and get these a little ahead of schedule if possible.

The New for 2021 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Baryonyx Dinosaur Model

Wild Safari Prehistoric World Baryonyx dinosaur model.

The new for 2021 Wild Safari Prehistoric World Baryonyx dinosaur model.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Putting armour on dinosaurs is an intriguing idea. It permits Safari Ltd to extend their range of models in their Mythical Realms series which incorporates strange animals from legend and folklore such as werewolves, dragons, mermaids and the Yeti.  The armoured Triceratops figure reminds us of the sort of dinosaur associated with the fantasy world Dinotopia created by artist and author James Gurney, who wrote a series of books about an island populated by people and dinosaurs.

The New for 2021 Armoured Triceratops Dinosaur Model

The Mythical Realms Armoured Triceratops.

The Safari Ltd Mythical Realms armoured Triceratops dinosaur model is now in stock at Everything Dinosaur.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

This brings a whole new meaning to the term “armoured dinosaur”.

A spokesperson from Everything Dinosaur commented:

“There are huge problems with global logistics at the moment.  The global coronavirus pandemic has left worldwide shipping in chaos.  There are extensive delays when it comes to the moving of goods around the world, the recent Chinese holidays associated with the Chinese Spring Festival otherwise known as the New Year Festival have added to the difficulties.  However, we had anticipated these problems and put contingencies in place which allowed us to bring in these two new for 2021 Safari Ltd figures slightly earlier than scheduled.”

The Five New for 2021 Safari Ltd Prehistoric Animal Models That Everything Dinosaur Will Stock

Five new for 2021 Safari Ltd prehistoric animal models.

The five new for 2021 Safari Ltd prehistoric animal models that Everything Dinosaur will be stocking.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The spokesperson added that the three remaining new for 2021 Safari Ltd figures (armoured T. rex, Daspletosaurus and the Spinosaurus), were scheduled to arrive in late April but team members would do all they could to get these models into stock as quickly as possible.

To view the range of Safari Ltd prehistoric animal models in stock at Everything Dinosaur including the Baryonyx and the new armoured Triceratops: Wild Safari Prehistoric World.

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26 02, 2021

Concentrated Levels of Iridium Found at Chicxulub Impact Site

By | February 26th, 2021|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur Fans, Geology, Main Page, Palaeontological articles|0 Comments

High levels of the rare Earth element iridium have been found in drill cores taken from the peak-ring sequence of the Chicxulub impact site located on the Yucatan peninsula (Mexico). This evidence further supports the theory that the extra-terrestrial space object that smashed into our planet some 66 million years ago is linked to the Cretaceous-Palaeogene (K-Pg) mass extinction event.

Extra-terrestrial Object Hits Earth

The day that everything changed. Scientists have found more evidence linking the Chicxulub impact event to the K-Pg mass extinction.

Picture Credit: Map from Nature Geoscience / illustration courtesy of NASA

In 2016, IODP-ICDP* Expedition 364 drilled into the Chicxulub crater’s peak ring, an irregular ring of hills that surrounds the crater’s centre bringing around 835 metres of rock to the surface for detailed laboratory analysis.

* IODP (International Ocean Discovery Program) and the ICDP (International Continental Scientific Drilling Program).

Iridium is extremely rare on Earth, although a spike in levels has been recorded at numerous sites around the world that represent deposits laid down around 66 million years ago. The researchers state that the iridium levels found in the drill cores are four times more concentrated than elsewhere. The scientists found iridium levels were highest across the transition into early Paleogene sediments (Danian faunal stage).

A Geophysical Map of the Chicxulub Impact Site

Geophysical Map of the Chicxulub Impact Crater
A geophysical map of the impact crater and the Chicxulub crater peaks from which the drill cores were taken.

Picture Credit: NASA

Writing in the academic journal “Science Advances” the researchers conclude that this evidence combined with the spike in worldwide iridium deposits at the time of the mass extinction event, constitutes indisputable evidence that the suspected dinosaur-killing bolide that created the Chicxulub crater was indeed the culprit.

Commenting on the significance of this research, co-author Professor Joanna Morgan (Imperial College London) stated:

“This asteroid was vaporised and ejected from the impact site at high speed. Iridium, and other asteroidal material, then circled the Earth above the stratosphere within a fast-moving dust cloud and may have taken up to two decades to settle through the atmosphere and ocean before being deposited at the impact site.”

Lead author of the study, Professor Steven Goderis of the Free University of Brussels-VUB added:

“It’s quite remarkable that we found concentrations this high within the impact structure itself. In the first hours to months after the impact, the crater was a highly turbulent environment affected by tsunamis and earthquakes. Luckily, the iridium layer was preserved. This unquestionably ties the formation of the crater to the mass extinction event that marked the end of the Cretaceous and confirms that the asteroid impact and dinosaur extinction are indisputably linked.”

The Iridium Clay Layer Marks the Impact Event

Identifying the K-T Boundary (Iridium Clay Layer)
Identifying concentrations of the rare Earth element iridium in a clay layer. At various locations around the world geologists have identified an iridium rich clay layer that marks the end of the Cretaceous and the beginning of the Palaeogene (K-T boundary).

Picture Credit: The Open University/Everything Dinosaur

Everything Dinosaur acknowledges the contribution of a media release from Imperial College London in the compilation of this article.

To read a related article looking at how palaeontologists interpret fossil evidence of a global impact event: Quarry Site Might Reveal Evidence of Cretaceous Mass Extinction Event.

The scientific paper: “Globally distributed iridium layer preserved within the Chicxulub impact structure” by Steven Goderis, Honami Sato, Ludovic Ferrière, Birger Schmitz, David Burney, Pim Kaskes, Johan Vellekoop, Axel Wittmann, Toni Schulz, Stepan M. Chernonozhkin, Philippe Claeys, Sietze J. de Graaff, Thomas Déhais, Niels J. de Winter, Mikael Elfman, Jean-Guillaume Feignon, Akira Ishikawa, Christian Koeberl, Per Kristiansson, Clive R. Neal, Jeremy D. Owens, Martin Schmieder, Matthias Sinnesael, Frank Vanhaecke, Stijn J. M. Van Malderen, Timothy J. Bralower, Sean P. S. Gulick, David A. Kring, Christopher M. Lowery, Joanna V. Morgan, Jan Smit, Michael T. Whalen and the IODP-ICDP Expedition 364 Scientists published in Science Advances.

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25 02, 2021

Coins Commemorate Mary Anning

By | February 25th, 2021|Adobe CS5, Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal News Stories, Dinosaur Fans, Famous Figures, Main Page|0 Comments

Coin Collection Celebrates the Contribution of Mary Anning

The Royal Mint in collaboration with the London Natural History Museum has launched a commemorative coin collection honouring the celebrated palaeontology pioneer Mary Anning.  From selling seashells on the seashore to a coin collection which includes a gold proof coin valued at over £1,100.00 ($1,540.00 USD) featuring an image of an ichthyosaur, the contribution to science of the most famous former resident of Lyme Regis in Dorset is being honoured in a very special way.

One of the Commemorative Coins Features an Ichthyosaur

A coin features an ichthyosaur (Temnodontosaurus).

One of the coins that commemorates Mary Anning features an illustration of an ichthyosaur (Temnodontosaurus).

Picture Credit: The Royal Mint

The “Tales of the Earth” Series

This is the second coin collection in The Royal Mint’s “Tales of the Earth” series, celebrating the remarkable fossil record of the British Isles. Whilst the original series featured the first dinosaurs to be named and described (Iguanodon, Megalosaurus and the armoured dinosaur Hylaeosaurus), there are no dinosaurs on these three coins, after all, dinosaur fossil remains from the “Jurassic Coast” are exceptionally rare.  The marine shales explored by the Anning family in Georgian times revealed the remains of huge sea monsters and occasionally pterosaurs, such as Dimorphodon which features on another of the coins that make up this set.

Honouring Mary Anning – The First Fossil Remains of Dimorphodon Were Found in 1828

Coin honours Mary Anning.

From the Royal Mint, a coin has been issued which honours the discovery of the first pterosaur fossil in England by Mary Anning.

Picture Credit: The Royal Mint

The renowned British palaeo-artist Bob Nicholls who designed the trio of dinosaurs that featured on the first set of “Tales of the Earth” commemorative coins, returns to bring back to life three prehistoric creatures that reflect the contribution to palaeontology made by Mary Anning.  The third coin features a beautiful illustration of a Plesiosaurus.

A Plesiosaurus Features on One of the Commemorative Fifty Pence Coins

Honouring Mary Anning (Plesiosaurus 1823).

Picture Credit: The Royal Mint

With the assistance of Sandra Chapman of the Earth Sciences Department at the Natural History Museum, each of the coin design’s created by Bob Nicholls are a scientifically accurate reconstruction of the creatures and their ancient Early Jurassic environment.  By using the latest colour printing techniques, the intricate characteristics of each of the prehistoric marine reptiles have been captured to illustrate accurately how these creatures looked like on Earth millions of years ago, making them appear dynamic and adding a new level of visual fidelity to the coins.

Commemorative Coins to Celebrate the Contribution of Mary Anning

Coins minted to honour Mary Anning.

A trio of coins that have been minted to honour the contribution to science of Mary Anning.

Picture Credit: The Royal Mint

Commenting on the addition of this coin collection, the Divisional Director of Commemorative Coin at The Royal Mint, Clare Maclennan stated:

“It is an absolute pleasure to continue the popular Tales of the Earth commemorative 50p coin series in conjunction with the Natural History Museum.  The next collection in the series celebrates fossil hunter and pioneering palaeontologist Mary Anning, with three coin’s featuring Anning’s astonishing discoveries of Temnodontosaurus, Plesiosaurus and Dimorphodon.”

The coins each with a face value of fifty pence are available in a number of formats at various price points permitting coin collectors and dinosaur fans the opportunity to acquire them.  For the record, the gold coin valued at over £1,000 is a limited edition piece, just 250 have been produced.

The Temnodontosaurus Coin in a Presentation Acrylic Block

Acrylic block containing one of the Mary Anning commemorative coins.

An acrylic block which features the 50p commemorative Temnodontosaurus image honouring Mary Anning.

Picture Credit: The Royal Mint

A Mysterious Coin Found at Lyme Regis

Back in 2015 Everything Dinosaur reported on the discovery of a mysterious metal token that was found by a metal detectorist at Lyme Regis.  It was speculated that this coin-like object could have been the property of Mary Anning.  We wonder what Mary would have made of the coin collection created by The Royal Mint commemorating her contribution.

Did This Metal Token Once Belong to Mary Anning?

The Mary Anning Disc

Stamped on the disc are the words “Mary Anning and the year 1810 marked in Roman numerals.

Picture Credit: Lyme Regis Museum with additional annotation by Everything Dinosaur

To read more about the Mary Anning disc: Mysterious Token Linked to Mary Anning.

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