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Literature
List of Biggest Dinosaurs
The largest dinosaur in terms of mass and volume is probably some sort of titanosaur. As of now.....
Here's how the biggest titanosaurs rank out in first-last place:
1. Tie between Alamosaurus (referred Mexican fibula + Fowler & Sullivan's neck centrum), Puertasaurus (1 cervical, 1 dorsal, 2 unpublished caudals) and the "Chubut Monster" (majority of skeleton from at least six specimens). All of of these animals appear to top out around 120+ ft. long and probably 100 tons.
2. Tie between Argentinosaurus and the "MLP Monster" (briefly mentioned by GSP, 1988 with estimate measurements, and lost to history since). Both of these animals were probably pushing 110+ ft. long and 80-90 tons
3. Tie between Ruyangosaurus (cervical rib, anterior and posterior dorsals, additional unpublished dorsals, dorsal rib, upper femur, tibia), Notocolossus (dorsal and caudal vertebrae, foot, and limb elements) and "Argyrosaurus" sp. (the larger referred femur FMNH 13018)
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Supersaurus vivianae by Paleo-King Supersaurus vivianae :iconpaleo-king:Paleo-King 77 34 So you want to draw Huanghetitanids? by Paleo-King So you want to draw Huanghetitanids? :iconpaleo-king:Paleo-King 62 32
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Our March - 'Die Paleo-Kompanie'
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I still am young on years of life,
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Already some have been ripped off
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my arm and brush, exhort!
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that Paleo-King did sing -
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So struggle forth like dinosaurs,
til Fraudsters' whining shall end;
Accuracy and copyrights,
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And Araucarias be strewn
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Brachiosaur Death's Head by Paleo-King Brachiosaur Death's Head :iconpaleo-king:Paleo-King 23 14 Giraffatitan brancai UNCENSORED! by Paleo-King Giraffatitan brancai UNCENSORED! :iconpaleo-king:Paleo-King 103 45 Brachiosaurid skull comparison by Paleo-King Brachiosaurid skull comparison :iconpaleo-king:Paleo-King 77 14 Titanosaurs and other Somphospondyli by Paleo-King Titanosaurs and other Somphospondyli :iconpaleo-king:Paleo-King 43 32 The Drinker by Paleo-King The Drinker :iconpaleo-king:Paleo-King 58 22 Sonorasaurus thompsoni by Paleo-King Sonorasaurus thompsoni :iconpaleo-king:Paleo-King 36 13 Cedarosaurus weiskopfae by Paleo-King Cedarosaurus weiskopfae :iconpaleo-king:Paleo-King 56 40 British Brachiosaurs by Paleo-King British Brachiosaurs :iconpaleo-king:Paleo-King 119 16 Abydosaurus mcintoshi skeletal by Paleo-King Abydosaurus mcintoshi skeletal :iconpaleo-king:Paleo-King 95 42 Fusuisaurus zhaoi skeletal by Paleo-King Fusuisaurus zhaoi skeletal :iconpaleo-king:Paleo-King 53 73 Daanosaurus zhangi skeletal by Paleo-King Daanosaurus zhangi skeletal :iconpaleo-king:Paleo-King 56 14

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Earlier you may have heard of a truly colossal sauropod species known as the French Monster. First it appeared to be a titanosaur, though now it looks to be a basal somphospondyl, along the same lines as Chubutisaurus and Paluxysaurus.

It's a massive creature no doubt, but one thing severely lacking from the announcements of the finds several years ago (besides a description paper and a name!) was a set of proper measurements for the bones. We do have some good pics though, from the dig site in Angeac-Charente, which is apparently wine country. It's tempting to think that fossil-rich soils make for top-quality grapes... lots of minerals there. And tannins... look at how dark those bones are, surely from all the tannins, it must be. Most significant were two femurs from different individuals, one of which was well-photographed and appeared to be about 2.2m long, the other being considerably larger. Below you see the smaller one:

Photos of the larger femur, estimated at 2.6m, did not materialize. However there were some rare glimpses of other gigantic bits.

Some of the biggest caudal vertebrae ever found, and quite possibly the biggest toe bone ever found (the darker bone near the center).

Then we have this gem, which it the lower end of either a tibia or a very worn-down femur. Again, huge.


The foot claws are just enormous. This one is as big as a sewing machine.


One toe bone from this sauropod (right) is more massive than the whole femur of a theropod found at the same site (left).


There are also some teeth from the site, with the same black mineralization as the first femur, and encrusted with some sort of comglomerate. They look similar to brachiosaur teeth, which is not surprising given that the unique features of the femur put it closest to the Chubutisauridae, which are only a couple steps removed from brachiosaurs.


We also know that a cast was made of the 2.2m femur. For some years, little more was known.

Gunnar Bivens gave me this link to some sources: dml.cmnh.org/2017Apr/msg00032.… which include information on the French Monster. Not only do they verify the size of the 2.2m femur known, as well as the other materials, but they also verify the estimate of the larger femur at 2.6m long when complete - surpassing the femur of Argentinosaurus.

Given that the French Monster appears to cluster closest to Paluxysaurus and Sauroposeidon and shares several diagnostic femur features in common with both of them (there is a juvenile Cloverly Formation femur from the latter), a good place to start when scaling the French Monster is the already existing Paluxysaurus skeletal from Steve O'Connor:

Assuming you use the Paluxysaurus proportions as seen here, and a GDI based on the mounted skeleton, the "adult" Sauroposeidon from Oklahoma would scale up to 26.9m 47.5 tonnes, as per Franoys. The same model yields dimensions for the two French Monster specimens known from the 2.2m and 2.6m femurs at [28.5m and 56.5 tonnes] and [33.5m and 85 tonnes] respectively. Yes, I said 85 tonnes. That's up in Argentinosaurus territory, and for a dinosaur that almost certainly had a slimmer rib cage - which would require it to be a hugely tall animal, and in lateral view its slimmer torso would actually have to look bigger and deeper than that of Argentinosaurus to get the same volume and mass.

Those are impressive sizes. Though I suspect they may be a bit conservative, as it's unlikely that an adult Sauroposeidon had the same proportions as Paluxysaurus (though the juvenile Cloverly Sauroposeidons apparently did). I would expect more elongation in the neck and tail for the "adult" Sauroposeidon, and the four cervicals we have were likely not the longest ones in the neck. Similarly, the French monster would likely top those estimates based on likely neck elongation assuming its juvenile form was something like the juvenile Sauroposeidons from Cloverly.


I would estimate Sauroposeidon somewhere around 28-30m, and the two French Monsters known from femurs at around 33m and 36m respectively. But even these aren't the biggest specimens of the French Monster. The real whopper stretches the limits of credibility. There is a huge rib pictured on one of those French websites that's AT LEAST as long as 4 people! www.bulbintown.com/projects/le… Am I seeing this right? This would have to be some kind of record breaker, even bigger than the larger femur specimen. Think about it - the larger ribs in a sauropod typically were in the same length range as the femur, a bit more when you account for their curve length. But if a sauropod's femur is 2.6m long, its unlikely that a 4m+ rib would come from the same specimen. So we have a third gigantic individual, which would have easily outclassed the other two.


DAAAAAAAMN that's a big rib. That's 5 people lying next to it, but the guy at the top may be next to a dorsal vertebra as the rib head seems to terminate further down. At the bottom, the end is broken off! So there was even more...


This is great news. Now we have a basal somphospondyl to rival Argentinosaurus. Even if you ignore the rib specimen and go based only on the individual that provided the larger of the two femurs, 33.5m and 85 tonnes (?!?) for a chubutisaur is no joke.


And that crazy-huge rib... that thing must be 6m long? Admittedly it's pretty flattened from millions of years of being buried under tons of rock, but even when uncrushed and in its natural curve, that's at least a 4m-deep rib cage in strictly linear side-view dimensions. I know there are a lot of issues with scaling sauropods off of just rib pieces, but keep in mind, this rib looks to be 6m long and is still missing the bottom end! So conservatively at 4m uncrushed and articulated, what does that come out to, a 112 foot or 36m animal using my B. alithorax as a model (it has a similarly long torso), but the neck would be a lot longer in Sauroposeidon or the French Monster...

... so using Steve O'Connor's Paluxysaurus skeletal is a better model (more elongated neck plus proportionally shallower ribcage), then we have a total length/longest rib length ratio of 10.24, so we get a 41m animal! This means it's about 1.22 times the length of Franoys' estimate for the larger femur specimen (remember, that's still a conservative estimate). Cubing that for all 3 dimensions, we get 1.81 times the volume of that specimen, and thus 1.51 times the mass.  = 154 tonnes. THIS IS INSANE! The Oklahoma apatosaur and the newly legendary BYU Barosaurus specimens might as well roll up and cry. Move over, boring diplodocid fern-slugs. Macronarians have the crown once again!

Folks, we may have the biggest dinosaur ever here. I'm not claiming it "must" be 154 tonnes, it may not be much more than 100-110 tonnes depending on how these animals grew allometrically. But that's still in Puertasaurus/Mexican Alamosaurus/biggest individual of Chubut Monster territory. And the 41m length exceeds all of these animals, and is still only based on using the Paluxysaurus skeletal as a model, still ignoring how much distal material is missing from the rib, and still scaling up from Franoys' conservative estimate for the larger French Monster Femur. With better photos we may be able to bring down the size, but for now... WOW. 41m and possibly in excess of McNeill Alexander's (flawed) "upper limit" for sauropod masses. I'm not joking, this could be the find of the century.

At least one
of these French Monsters is a real record crusher, probably the individual with that huge rib (assuming it's not a petrified tree, which is unlikely given all the attention it's getting from the dig team in that photo, plus its apparently rib-like proximal end and close proximity to an obvious distal rib fragment next door). There are no pictures of the rib fully prepared, or of the 2.6m femur. But we know how to scale them so I'm confident this animal could have gotten bigger than Argentinosaurus and perhaps even any of the other mega-titanosaurs.

For now here is an image of a museum display for the smallest of the three French Monster specimens examined here, the 2.2m complete femur, with a fibula from the same individual. Even this animal is huge, and it's dwarfed by the two bigger ones. And chubutisaurs actually had a pretty low femur-to-body length ratio, which means they outclassed most sauropods in total body length, for any given femur size.

And now imagine one twice this size, with that 4m rib... just to keep one thing in mind, a 4m rib also blows the ribs of Supersaurus (the prior record-holder for deepest ribcage), the Potter Creek brachiosaur, and "Huanghetitan" ruyangensis clear out of the ballpark. Using Paluxysaurus neck proportions, the giant rib individual also would have beat out Supersaurus, Daxiatitan, Yunmenglong, and "Mamenchisaurus" sinocanadorum for neck length (and obviously Sauroposeidon as well). And a 4m rib is a conservative estimate for that photograph, not accounting for the broken lower end! You have not even begun to see the biggest dinosaurs, it seems to say.

Was the French Monster the biggest? Did some individuals of the mega-titanosaurs get larger? Dump your comments below, but now I think you're pretty clear on where I stand. There are already plenty of pics here for the limb and tail parts of smaller individuals, which are unquestionably already in super-sauropod range. Unless that rib turns out to be anything other than a rib (and if a rib that thick ends up being a cervical rib rather than a dorsal rib, that's even scarier), we are looking at the new biggest dinosaur. Full stop.

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I am a Paleo-Artist and Independent Paleontologist. I aim for both accuracy and elegance in my visual time-travel back to the Mesozoic, as is the case we observe in nature today. I have been featured in blogs, twitter, and even in a few very good books.

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:iconforbiddenparadise64:
You're right. The humerus have the same problem. cdn.discordapp.com/attachments… This is Turiasaurus' and this:  cdn.discordapp.com/attachments… is the French Monster's.

The humerus is broken and the picture seems to have them pushing the two ends together to make it look like Turiasaurus. Not only is there no evidence it was that short (and the lines of the cracks suggest otherwise), but the ends are much more rounded than in Turiasaurus too. 

Also, while teeing is out of the question, a huge fibula has appeared too. cdn.discordapp.com/attachments… This is a pic of it compared to the end of the 1.4m femur. cdn.discordapp.com/attachments… And the rest of the femur for comparison. So it looks signicantly bigger as well as proportionally more robust. 

And according to the museum website, the smaller femur is 2.23m, not 2.2m lol. I'm sure that changes things in a minor way. (Edit: instead of 28.5m and 56.5 tonnes scaled isometrically from Paluxysaurus, it's now 28.9m and 58.8 tonnes). Also, if the fibula is any indicator, then the giant femur may actually end up at 2.67m rather than 2.6m (assuming the two scale equally). This results in a Paluxysaurus-based size of 34.6m and 101.16 tonnes. Of course, the giant fibula is also proportionally more robust than the smaller one, so the weight estimate should be bumped even higher. That and as we discussed earlier, neck and tail allometrics would mean a longer tail too. 

The cervival also looks similar to Sauroposeidon, too. So there's that. 
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Apr 17, 2017  Professional Traditional Artist
The humerus: It is not only broken and missing most of the middle section, but their compressed display is FAR too short (also it appears that the top part is in posterior view but the bottom part may be in anterior view?). This humerus has two issues that make it easy to misinterpret: its fragmentary state, and really bad erosion. The irony is that chubutisaur humeri are NOT normally rounded at the top, they are actually more angular than in Turiasaurus... but again, this one is very badly eroded, as are most of the other bones in this larger "beige" specimen, so the humerus shape in this case isn't a reliable indicator of the actual shape of a complete humerus. However its lower end has pretty wide-gauge condyles, which is 100% consistent with what you get in Paluxysaurus and Chubutisaurus.

The fibula: it's just the upper fragment but definitely huge. I'm seeing a pattern here. The black bones all seem to be from the smaller specimen and the beige bones all seem to be from the larger specimen. This is good because we can cross-scale the parts as more are prepared and photographed.

The femurs: 2.23m is hardly any different from 2.2m. It's a 30mm difference, or 3cm. Yes it may seem significant in real life, but I've seen bones with more than 3cm eroded off the ends that still show the rough shape of the condyles, and in a skeletal image of something so big, 3cm is almost invisible. Affecting the tonnage significantly is possible but again a bit of a stretch for just 3cm.

The cervical and the couple of dorsals in the photos do indeed look like Sauroposeidon, I'm comparing them to the juvenile Cloverly Formation specimens... so similar it's not even funny. Francoposeidon here we come....
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:iconmajestic-colossus:
Majestic-Colossus Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2017
Was Mamenchisaurus Sinocanadorum the tallest organism ever? If not, what dinosaur was?
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2017  Professional Traditional Artist
The problem with "Mamenchisaurus" sinocanadorum is that we don't know how much of it is real, so estimating size is tricky. Greg Paul did a full skeletal in the first edition of the Princeton Field Guide, then retracted it in the second edition, and now mentions on his website that it's "just a couple of neck vertebrae" (although I suspect it's more than that). If it turns out Paul's initial skeletal was correct, then it could be the tallest, but as mamenchisaurs don't have as much shoulder elevation as chubutisaurs, brachiosaurs, etc. it's still a bit of a toss-up.

The tallest at this time would probably be either the French Monster (see the journal post on it) or one of the mega-titanosaurs like Puertasaurus, the Chubut Monster, or the biggest Alamosaurus specimens. But there's not much neck material known for these either, so again a lot of guesswork, but they are definitely huge. Sauroposeidon is very tall but the French Monster was closely related to it and is bigger. Other contenders for height are some of the giant euhelopodids like Yunmenglong and Daxiatitan, both of which are known from several neck vertebrae, and had crazy neck lengths like mamenchisaurus, combined with the higher shoulders of titanosauriforms. Daxiatitan probably wasn't the tallest, but its neck is the most complete out of these giants. And then there are the brachiosaurs, which are, ton for ton, some of the tallest proportionally, even if they don't have the longest necks on record, they have the steepest shoulders and still some pretty impressive necks. Some giant Giraffatitans like HMN XV2 may have been 60 feet tall or more when complete. The Potter Creek Brachiosaurus sp. was around the same height. To put things in perspective, the French monster may have topped 70ft. in height (crazy, I know...)

To really have a good idea which is the tallest, I'd have to do skeletals for all of these animals, which is a time consuming process. However you can commission skeletals from me which would definitely speed things up.
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:iconsteveoc86:
Steveoc86 Featured By Owner Edited Apr 15, 2017
Interesting to here about the giant mamenchisaur. The M.sincanadorum holotye is just a few neck bones and a lower jaw. I suspect GSP and the people who created the mount were combining the type with some other find but I'm not sure. Where on his website does he mention that it's just a few vertebra?
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Apr 15, 2017  Professional Traditional Artist
Oops I think it was actually the DML not the website.
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(1 Reply)
:iconmajestic-colossus:
Majestic-Colossus Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2017
Thanks. I've seen a person who did an illustration of the rib specimen, and it was 70ft+, that is just colossal.
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2017  Professional Traditional Artist
Where do you find that? I'd like to see it.
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(1 Reply)
:iconforbiddenparadise64:
Bricksmashtv gave me this link to some sources: dml.cmnh.org/2017Apr/msg00032.… which include information on the French Monster. Not only do they verify the size of the 2.2m femur known, as well as the other materials, but they estimate the larger femur at 2.6m long when complete- surpassing that of Argentinasaurus.

105697 and Franoy's even gave estimates in the Discord as to how it would compare to Sauroposedion, assuming you use Paluxysaurus proportions as seen here: images.dinosaurpictures.org/pa…
Using the same method that made Franoy's 26.9m 47.5 tonne Sauroposeidon, they got the two French specimens at [28.5m and 56.5 tonnes] and [33.5m and 85 tonnes] respectively. 

Thoughts? 
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Edited Apr 11, 2017  Professional Traditional Artist
Those are impressive sizes. Though I suspect they may be a bit conservative, as it's unlikely that an adult Sauroposeidon had the same proportions as Paluxysaurus (though the juvenile Cloverly Sauroposeidons apparently did). I would expect more elongation in the neck and tail for the "adult", and the four cervicals we have were likely not the longest ones in the neck. Similarly, the French monster would likely top those estimates based on likely neck elongation assuming its juvenile form was something like the juvenile Sauroposeidons from Cloverly.

I would estimate Sauroposeidon somewhere around 28-30m, and the two French Monsters known from femurs at around 33m and 36m respectively. And there is a huge rib pictured on one of those French websites that's AT LEAST as long as 4 people! www.bulbintown.com/projects/le… Am I seeing this right? This would have to be some kind of record breaker, even bigger than the larger femur specimen.

This is great news. Now we have a basal somphospondyl to rival Argentinosaurus. 33.5m and 85 tonnes (?!?) for a chubutisaur is no joke.

And that crazy-huge rib... that thing must be 6m long? Even when uncrushed and in its natural curve, that's at least a 4m-deep rib cage. I know there are a lot of issues with scaling sauropods off of just rib pieces, but keep in mind, this rib looks to be 6m long and is still missing the bottom end! So conservatively at 4m uncrushed and articulated, what does that come out to, a 112 foot or 36m animal using my B. alithorax as a model (it has a similarly long torso), but the neck would be a lot longer in Sauroposeidon or the French Monster...

... so using Steve O'Connor's Paluxysaurus skeletal is a better model (more elongated neck plus proportionally shallower ribcage), then we have a total length/longest rib length ratio of 10.24, so we get a 41m animal! This means it's about 1.22 times the length of Franoys' estimate for the larger femur specimen (remember, that's still a conservative estimate). Cubing that for all 3 dimensions, we get 1.81 times the volume of that specimen, and thus 1.51 times the mass.  = 154 tonnes. THIS IS INSANE!

Folks, we may have the biggest dinosaur ever here. I'm not claiming it "must" be 154 tonnes, it may not be much more than 100-110 tonnes depending on how these animals grew allometrically. But that's still in Puertasaurus/Mexican Alamosaurus/biggest individual of Chubut Monster territory. And the 41m length exceeds all of these animals, and is still only based on using the Paluxysaurus skeletal as a model, still ignoring how much distal material is missing from the rib, and still scaling up from Franoys' conservative estimate for the larger French Monster Femur. With better photos we may be able to bring down the size, but for now... WOW. 41m and possibly in excess of McNeill Alexander's (flawed) "upper limit" for sauropod masses. I'm not joking, this could be the find of the century

At least one
of these French Monsters is a real record crusher, probably the individual with that huge rib (assuming it's not a petrified tree, which is unlikely given all the attention it's getting from the dig team in that photo, plus its apparently rib-like proximal end and close proximity to an obvious distal rib fragment next door).
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