Author Topic: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread  (Read 94377 times)

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Offline nickmitch

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #275 on: February 17, 2011, 09:44:24 PM »
I got some Paleo-news pertaining to the Marvel-era of dino history

Halbred, I'm sure you are gonna love this and want to make t-shirts out of some of them
http://www.flickr.com/photos/cadencejunkie/sets/72157625580764074/with/5284199167/

The Avengersaurs


The Full Set

Iron Brontosaurus  -  Captain Ameritops  -  Hulkasaurus Rex  -  AnkloTHORus
Stegolossus  -  PteranoSTORM  -  Wolveraptor  -  Paracyclophus
Gambilophosaurus  -  Nightcrawlimimus  -  Daredevilnotauros  -  Deadpachycepoolosaurus

The council has voted. This shall hence forth be considered: "WIN."
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Offline Halbred

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #276 on: February 19, 2011, 12:03:54 AM »
Gonna need this. Gonna need this sooner rather than later!
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Offline ThePerm

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Offline Halbred

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #278 on: September 15, 2011, 10:45:05 PM »
****, I forgot this thread existed. Good job, Perm.

Awesome, right?! I'd like to see the BAND folks ("Birds Are Not Dinosaurs") try to spin this one.
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Offline ThePerm

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #279 on: September 16, 2011, 01:28:57 AM »
yeah it was on page 3, i guess it had been more than 120 days, funny doesn't feel like that long ago. This years gone by fast.
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Offline Morari

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #280 on: September 16, 2011, 09:19:08 AM »
I'd like to see the BAND folks ("Birds Are Not Dinosaurs") try to spin this one.

Birds are not dinosaurs, and vice versa! Given the exhaustive research between Jurassic Park and the Holy Bible, I think we know full well what dinosaurs were and what they weren't.
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Offline Halbred

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #281 on: September 16, 2011, 10:20:01 PM »
Well, yeah. Hold on, BAND is an actual group. It's a fringe group of mostly non-paleontologists or at least non-dinosaur specialists who are for some reason just AGAINST the idea that birds could be dinosaurs. This despite the fact that dinosaurs had feathers ("they're just collagen fibers") and all of the skeletal features shared between birds and, say, raptors ("it's convergence!"). They're kind of like anti-vaxxers. No matter what evidence you come up with or which of their arguments you decimate, they...remain unconvinced. Vocally.
« Last Edit: September 16, 2011, 10:21:59 PM by Halbred »
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Offline BlackNMild2k1

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #282 on: September 20, 2011, 09:47:55 AM »
Hey Halbred, when were you planning on telling us about this new Utah Raptor with FEATHERS that they suspect looks like a prehistoric emu/ostrich with eagle talons!?

http://www.irishweatheronline.com/news/history/palaeontology-earth-science/new-species-of-raptor-dinosaur-uncovered-in-utah/38998.html
Quote
The new dinosaur—dubbed Talos sampsoni—is a member of a rare group of feathered, bird-like theropod dinosaurs whose evolution in North America has been a longstanding source of scientific debate, largely for lack of decent fossil material. Indeed, Talos represents the first definitive troodontid theropod to be named from the Late Cretaceous of North America in over 75 years.

Lindsay Zanno, lead author of the study naming the new dinosaur explained: “Finding a decent specimen of this type of dinosaur in North America is like a lighting strike… it’s a random event of thrilling proportions

When the team first began studying the Talos specimen, they noticed some unusual features on the second digit of the left foot, but initially assumed they were related to the fact that it belonged to a new species.


Offline Ceric

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #283 on: September 20, 2011, 09:49:34 AM »
Well, yeah. Hold on, BAND is an actual group. It's a fringe group of mostly non-paleontologists or at least non-dinosaur specialists who are for some reason just AGAINST the idea that birds could be dinosaurs. This despite the fact that dinosaurs had feathers ("they're just collagen fibers") and all of the skeletal features shared between birds and, say, raptors ("it's convergence!"). They're kind of like anti-vaxxers. No matter what evidence you come up with or which of their arguments you decimate, they...remain unconvinced. Vocally.
So your saying they're Congress?

Also that new Dinosaur gives me a Platypus vibe.
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Offline Halbred

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #284 on: September 20, 2011, 07:36:16 PM »
Hilariously, only the legs and some vertebrae were found. I HATE HATE HATE it when people restore the whole animal based on...a very partial skeleton.

Anyway, yeah, new troodontid. The real story is this kind of effs up the taxonomic stability of the genus Troodon, which has become kind of a wastebasket taxon for any troodontid material in North America.
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Offline Morari

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #285 on: October 13, 2011, 06:57:01 AM »
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Offline Caliban

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #286 on: January 02, 2012, 07:36:37 AM »
Hey Halbred, do you know about this island?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sUwexnYVEZg

Offline Halbred

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #287 on: January 02, 2012, 10:55:27 AM »
Ooh, big pliosaur! Sexy.
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Offline ThePerm

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #288 on: January 02, 2012, 12:22:36 PM »
question for halbred?

If you were to discover a dinosaur closely related to a Velociraptor would you call it a Philosoraptor? or how long do you think it will take before thatg actually becomes a dinosaur name?
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Offline Halbred

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #289 on: January 02, 2012, 04:46:50 PM »
You're fired.
Also, mark your calendars: in early April (aways off, I know), I'm giving a lecture about Alaska's one unique (so far) dinosaur: Pachyrhinosaurus perotorum. It's going to be at a local pub, but they have plans to webcast it. If that dream becomes a reality, I'll let you all know ahead of time.
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Offline A Straight Up Trippin' Balls Forum User

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #290 on: January 02, 2012, 05:12:45 PM »
Perfect funhouse rifftrax opportunity.

Offline Stratos

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #291 on: June 01, 2014, 03:21:31 PM »
So what ever happened to this thread, Halbred?


This article made me think of dino news.



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Offline Halbred

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #292 on: June 01, 2014, 07:05:07 PM »
Yeah, I should keep back up on this. I'll post next time something awesome happens in the world of paleo!

For example: I wish I could talk about the ENTIRE SKELETON they found of Deinocheirus, because they did, skull and everything, but I CAN'T because it's not published and the workers aren't releasing any preliminary information. There was a talk as SVP with a skeletal reconstruction, though, so here's what I will (can) say:

You all know Deinocheirus. It's been in every children's dinosaur book. All you've ever seen are its giant arms, which were found in Mongolia in the 20's or 30's. These are giant arms. Long thought to be a large ornithomimosaur (ostrich dinosaur), it's now confirmed to be. But it addition to being huge, it's also really bizarre:

It's got an abbreviated sail on its back, like Spinosaurus or Ouranosaurus. It's metatarsals aren't very long, so it wasn't a runner (unlike all of its close relatives). Its head is pretty typically ornithomimid OH WAIT IT HAS A DUCKBILL. Like Edmontosaurus. So it's a duckbilled, sail-backed, slow-moving, GIGANTIC ornithomimid. Go goddamn figure.
« Last Edit: June 01, 2014, 07:09:01 PM by Halbred »
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Offline Stratos

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #293 on: June 02, 2014, 05:43:40 PM »
So...this is the Platypus of the Paleo world? Sounds almost like a joke with all of these diverse features.


I'll help you with info.


New Tyrannosaur Nicknamed "Pinocchio Rex" Discovered In China





Quote
Scientists predict that they may find more long-snouted tyrannosaurs, so they have created a new branch of the tyrannosaur family which includesQ. sinensis and both of the Alioramus species.

“This is a different breed of tyrannosaur,” says Dr Steve Brusatte, University of Edinburgh, and one of the authors of the study. “It might have looked a little comical, but it would have been as deadly as any other tyrannosaur, and maybe even a little faster and stealthier.”
« Last Edit: June 02, 2014, 05:46:06 PM by Stratos »
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Offline BlackNMild2k1

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #294 on: September 04, 2014, 04:27:18 PM »
Newly discovered dinosaur, Dreadnoughtus, takes title of largest terrestrial animal

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2014/09/04/this-is-the-kind-of-dinosaur-you-find-in-hollywood/

Quote
Scientists have discovered the fossilized remains of a new long-necked, long-tailed dinosaur that has taken the crown for largest terrestrial animal with a body mass that can be accurately determined.

Measurements of bones from its hind leg and foreleg revealed that the animal was 65 tons, and still growing when it died in the Patagonian hills of Argentina about 77 million years ago.

“To put this in perspective, an African elephant is about five tons, T. rex is eight tons, Diplodocus is 18 tons, and a Boeing 737 is around 50 tons,” said study author and paleontologist Kenneth Lacovara at Drexel University. “And then you have Dreadnoughtus at 65 tons.”

Dreadnoughtus, meaning “fears nothing,” is named after the impervious early 20th century battleships. Although it was a plant-eater, a healthy Dreadnoughtus likely had no real issues with predators due to its intimidating size and muscular, weaponized tail.


Offline Stratos

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #295 on: September 05, 2014, 12:00:15 AM »
Where are Supersaurus and Ultrasaurus in that scale? Or did they get renamed or reclassified?
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Offline Halbred

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #296 on: September 15, 2014, 09:59:56 PM »

Supersaurus may still be a valid taxon, but Ultasaurus is just a big Brachiosaurus. Supersaurus is kind of up in the air. It's difficult to differentiate from other Morrison sauropods.


DREADNOUGHTUS (awesome name) is questionably the heaviest dinosaur on record. The SV-POW guys have a great series of posts about the math behind Dreadnoughtus and whether it really was the biggest on record (bottom line: hard to say):


http://svpow.com/category/titanosaur/dreadnoughtus/
http://svpow.com/2014/09/05/brief-thoughts-on-dreadnoughtus/


Also, the paper itself is open-access. You can read it yourself!


http://www.nature.com/srep/2014/140904/srep06196/full/srep06196.html


Now, certainly there are already a wealth of ridiculously enormous titanosaurid sauropods: Argentinosaurus, Puertasaurus, and Alamosaurus (from Texas!) also come to mind. These were huge animals no matter how you slice it. The scary part is that Dreadnoughtus was apparently STILL GROWING, but how much bigger it would've gotten is a complete unknown.


There's something more exciting to talk about than Dreadnoughtus anyway: SPINOSAURUS AEGYPTICUS.





I BE IN YO' RIVERS, EATIN' YO' FISHES!


There's been an ENORMOUS media push by National Geographic covering this "new" discovery. I say "new" in quotes because it's actually over a decade old. So we've all seen Jurassic Park III, right? And there's that new Big Bad, Spinosaurus, that totally kills T.rex by breaking its neck which is totally something dinosaurs did by the way. All the time. Very bloodless killing in the Mesozoic. Spinosaurus is a real animal--discovered by Ernst von Stromer in 1915 in Egypt. Unfortunately, he really only found a bunch of vertebrae (hence the sailback) and a dentary.


Those remains were put up in a German museum and I think you can see where this is going. World War II comes along, the Allies bomb the f*ck out of Germany, and those fossils (and a ton of others) are destroyed utterly. Thankfully, Stromer made excellent drawings of the bones and took wonderful photographs. He described them in loving detail--in German--but he essentially "preserved" Spinosaurus in the eyes of science. Unfortunately, only bits and pieces have come out of Egypt since, but more material from Morocco.


Among the best new fossils in recent years has been this snout fossil, shown here held by Some Guy:





That's a BIG ANIMAL.


Other critters were discovered since 1915 like Baryonyx in England and Suchomimus in Niger--and to a lesser extent, Irritator in Brazil--that helped to flesh out what "spinosauroids" looked like. Basically, they looked like normal theropods, but with crocodile skulls and HUGE thumb claws. Lots of studies now have shown that they were big fans of sushi, and spent a lot of time in and around the water. But it was always assumed that they were basically dinosaurian bears or herons, standing in the water and grabbing fish that passed under them.


The "Spinosaurus" in Jurassic Park III is basically a Hollywood-ized Suchomimus with a ridiculous sailback. It was NOT a super-predator, it would NOT have been able to hold off a Tyrannosaurus (or even its neighbor, Carcharodontosaurus) and its jaws would have snapped with any significant amount of torque applied. Less crocodile and more gharial, honestly.


But it was HUGE. We're talking T.rex sized or probably bigger.


So what's the new news?


Well, a group of paleontologists reported on what's essentially a collection of material that they examined or discovered over the years. It was found across two countries, represents numerous individuals and probably different age classes, but ALL TOGETHER gives a pretty good example of what Spinosaurus actually looked like. And if they're right, it looked really strange. The sail has two high points, the tail is abnormally long, but it's the hind limbs that are ridonk: they are really short by theropod standards. The authors suggest that it wasn't CAPABLE of bipedal locomotion on land. What's the basically say in the paper is that Spinosaurus is a more-or-less fully aquatic dinosaur, like early four-limbed whales were fully-aquatic mammals.


This is nuts. And there are problems with their reasoning.


Scott Hartman has two excellent posts about the proposed hindlimb proportions:


http://www.skeletaldrawing.com/home/theres-something-fishy-about-spinosaurus9112014
http://www.skeletaldrawing.com/home/there-may-be-more-fishiness-in-spinosaurus9132014


And Jaime Headden has a similarly great post about the cobbled-together skeletal:


http://qilong.wordpress.com/2014/09/12/the-outlaw-spino-saurus/


Finally, if your browser supports translation, Andrea Cau has a series of posts about various aspects of this new Spinosaurus discovery:


http://theropoda.blogspot.com/


Finally, the always-reliable Brian Switek (buy his books!) offers a great summary here:


http://phenomena.nationalgeographic.com/2014/09/11/the-new-spinosaurus/


National Geographic, for its part, has funded a life-size, flesh model (that's ironically standing on two legs) and a "swimming" skeletal model. There's clearly a lot of money here, but I think it's based on some questionable conclusions. This is how science works, of course, and disagreement will lead to more work which will lead to clarification later on. It's exciting for ME to see all this discussion happening in real-time following the actual paper's publication. BTW, the paper is NOT open-access, but the supplementary materials are:


http://www.sciencemag.org/content/early/2014/09/10/science.1258750/suppl/DC1


SCIENCE!
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Offline ShyGuy

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #297 on: September 15, 2014, 10:36:08 PM »
FINALLY

Offline Stratos

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #298 on: September 16, 2014, 10:18:48 PM »
I suspected that some dinosaur specimens were just larger/smaller examples of other species. How common has this turned out to be true?


I like that new stuff on Spinosaurus. Weird how the sail has multiple humps.
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Offline Halbred

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Re: Halbred's Paleo-News Thread
« Reply #299 on: September 17, 2014, 02:59:12 PM »
Keep in mind that the sail shape is still a working hypothesis--the spine is still very much a composite of specimens.

As for actual diversity vs. ontogeny, that's constantly being revisited in dinosaur taxonomy. Certainly, this problem has raised its head in theropods, ceratopsians, and especially lambeosaurines multiple times. This is more a relic problem left over from The Old Days of paleontology, when people weren't as...hmm...caution about taxonomic knots as they are today.

The most famous (and persistent) example of ontogeny vs. diversity is "Jane," a small tyrannosaurine from Montana. Charles Gilmore found it in the 1940's and suggested it was a new species of Gorgosaurus ("G. lancensis"). In 1988, Bakker, Currie & Williams noticed that many of the skull bones were fused, which they took to be an adult condition, and gave it a new genus: Nanotyrannus. In 1999, however, Thomas Carr provided a takedown of the adult features, pretty well convincing everybody that it's a juvenile, and since it occurs in known Tyrannosaurus beds, he considered it a juvenile Tyrannosaurus rex.

And that's pretty much where it stays today, although a few workers (Peter Larson in particular) continue to be unusually forceful in their belief that Nanotyrannus is real, and is a pygmy tyrannosaur, even though that makes absolutely no sense from an ecological perspective.

Gilmore discovered and named a small ceratopsid in 1913, Brachyceratops, based on five clearly juvenile specimens. As so few ceratopids were known in 1913, the new name at least sort of made sense. However, much later, in the 1990's, it became clear that all juvenile ceratopsids pretty much looked the same until they hit puberty, so Brachyceratops was abandoned, and those specimens were labeled "indeterminate subadult" for several years until 2011, when Andrew McDonald showed that one of the frills showed characteristics of Rubeosaurus ovatus, so today we think "Brachyceratops" is just a baby Rubosaurus.

I could go into it with lambeosaurines too, but you get the idea. Dinosaurs changed a lot as they grew up, and that fact wasn't always well-known or even considered. Every new specimen that came out of the ground got a new name during The Bone Wars, and we're still untangling those taxonomic knots today.
« Last Edit: September 17, 2014, 03:00:52 PM by Halbred »
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