Shop More Submit  Join Login
×
  • Art Print
  • Canvas
  • Photo




Details

Submitted on
September 5, 2012
Image Size
1.3 MB
Resolution
4464×4912
Submitted with
Sta.sh
Link
Thumb
Embed

Stats

Views
7,895 (2 today)
Favourites
80 (who?)
Comments
78
×
Sauroposeidon proteles skeletal by Paleo-King Sauroposeidon proteles skeletal by Paleo-King
Sauroposeidon proteles

Etymology: "lizard of divine earthquakes, perfected before the end (of its age)"

Time horizon: end of Early Cretaceous, Aptian-Albian epochs ~113 mya

Length: 32m (~106 ft.), perhaps more depending on proportions and maturity.

Probable mass: 60+ tons
---------------------------------------

The first hi-fi skeletal of the giant brachiosaur Sauroposeidon proteles, which dominated the coastal forests of North America's Cretaceous inland sea from Oklahoma all the way to Montana. Described bones are white, their missing portions light gray, and the likely shapes of missing neck vertebrae are dark gray.

Here you see the huge neck vertebrae of the type specimen described by Matt Wedel and co., as well as a referred juvenile neck centrum from Montana originally described by John Ostrom as an unknown sauropod. This is my first version of Sauroposeidon, without the new juvenile material described by D'emic. Whether the type specimen is fully adult is still up for debate, though it's downright huge any way you look at it.

D'emic (among others) considers Sauroposeidon a basal somphospondylian rather than a brachiosaur, and lumps it together with Paluxysaurus. I don't agree with either hypothesis at the present time, but it is interesting to note that both Sauroposeidon and Paluxysaurus do converge with somphospondyli and titanosaurs in a number of important ways (long dorsals, high internal pneumaticity, tall posterior dorsal spines, linear dorsal slope, shoulder blade shape, etc.) - as do several other derived cretaceous brachiosaurs, which appear to form a sub-clade within brachiosauridae. This sub-clade (which I tentatively call Pleurocoelinae) includes Pleuroceolus, Astrodon, Eucamerotus, Cedarosaurus, Abydosaurus, Sauroposeidon, Angloposeidon, Paluxysaurus and possibly Sonorasaurus.

A number of these, such as Eucamerotus, Cedarosaurus and Paluxysaurus, also have a slight retrograde tilt on the posterior dorsal neural spines, though the spines look vertical when the dorsal column is drawn tilted up as it should be in brachiosaurs. This odd tilt is not found in the juvenile Sauroposeidon material. Interpret that as you will.

For those who are wondering - no, Sauroposeidon is not the biggest dinosaur, and it's not even the biggest brachiosaur. "Brachiosaurus" nougaredi from Algeria (scaling from a partial sacrum) and Breviparopus from Morocco (scaling from footprints) were larger than the Sauroposeidon holotype, and both likely topped 120 feet in length, assuming average proportions similar to Giraffatitan (more conservative than Sauroposeidon). Among Somphospondyli, Daxiatitan is roughly the same length as Sauroposeidon, however the neck morphology is far more derived (in addition to having the typical somphospondyli bifid spines, which Sauroposeidon totally lacks).

References:

Wedel, Mathew J.; Cifelli, Richard L. (Summer 2005). "Sauroposeidon: Oklahoma's Native Giant". Oklahoma Geology Notes 65 (2): 4057

Wedel, Mathew J.; Cifelli, R.L. and Sanders, R..K. (2000). "Osteology, paleobiology, and relationships of the sauropod dinosaur Sauroposeidon". Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 45: 3433888.

Wedel, Mathew J.; Cifelli, R.L. and Sanders, R.K. (March 2000). "Sauroposeidon proteles, a new sauropod from the Early Cretaceous of Oklahoma". Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 20 (1): 109114. doi:10.1671/0272-4634(2000)020[0109:SPANSF]2.0.CO;2.
Add a Comment:
 
:iconcommonhousegecko:
CommonHouseGecko Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2013
" This sub-clade (which I tentatively call Pleurocoelinae) includes Pleuroceolus, Astrodon, Eucamerotus, Cedarosaurus, Abydosaurus, Sauroposeidon, Angloposeidon, Paluxysaurus and possibly Sonorasaurus."
 
I know that I don't deserve an opinion but I can't help but note that larger Brachiosaurids (Lusotitan, Brachiosaurus, Giraffatitan etc) seem to be more similar in proportions in between them - with proportionally longer necks and larger dorsal angles - than with more closely related smaller taxa. Though these could be easily convergent due to similar lifestyles among larger taxa, given their phylogenetic proximity isn't it plausible that all "pleurocoelinae" are just ontogenic stages of a couple of larger uuropean taxa (excluding Europasaurus that's an unforgivable case of insular dwarfism)?

On the other hand... Europe was an island archipelago back then so most european Brachiosaurid taxa could have been Mediterranean Dwarf Elephants of their era.
Reply
:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
The "pleurocoelinae" are most likely not ontogenic stages of larger species. Mainly this is because of their different arrangement of laminae and also the different morphology of the neural arches, they are tilted forward more than other brachiosaur sub-clades. Also Brachiosaurus and Giraffatitan are probably not from the same sub-clade.

Also most pleurocoelines are not European so the island dwarfism argument doesn't apply, nor could they be individuals of European forms.
Reply
:iconcommonhousegecko:
CommonHouseGecko Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013
So what's the reason for such an intense variation of adult size between so closely related taxa? Sauroposeidon and Angloposeidon must have been bigger compared to Sonorasaurus and Astrodon than African Bush Elephants compared to Mediterranean Dwarf Elephants.
Reply
:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Yes but simply because Sonorasaurus and Astrodon were not as huge as Sauroposeidon that doesn't mean they were dwarf species. Remember they topped 50 feet long, and that's bigger than a lot of sauropods that weren't insular dwarfs. The simple answer is that there were different-sized species for different niches, evolution is a process that pushes out. If one niche is occupied, populations will be under pressure to compete in niches where there's less competition and more access to resources, perhaps not all at heights of 60 feet. So it makes sense that not all brachiosaurs were record-sized giants, and the ones that were not giant didn't need to be dwarfs either. When a sauropod population is forced into dwarfism on an island, they reach about the same size as those mediterranean dwarf elephants, i.e. Europasaurus and Magyarosaurus. They will not be 50 feet long like Sonorasaurus.

The other problem is that many brachiosaurs (like Sonorasaurus) are only known from a single incomplete specimen, so it's anyone's guess what maximum size they reached. Perhaps the specimens we have for some of the smaller brachiosaurs aren't even close to maximum size (and even some of the bigger type specimens weren't done growing yet).
Reply
:iconcommonhousegecko:
CommonHouseGecko Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2013
So comparatively, what is the size of a B. altithorax when it hits adulthood?

We know that Diplodocus longus was an adult at 24 meters but it could reach at least as big as the "Seismosaurus" specimen.  Had brachiosaurids similar post-adulthood growth patterms?
Reply
:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Perhaps. The funny thing is that Diplodocus was an adult with fused coracoids at 24m but it kept growing, but be don't even have an adult Brachiosaurus. It may have reached adulthood at 90 feet or longer, perhaps the biggest old adults were more than 100 feet (30m) long. The problem is that there aren't a lot of well-studied Brachiosaurus remains (there are rumors of at least 30 partial individuals turning up  - and I mean VERY partial - but most of these are either in private hands or in a museum vault off-limits to most non-PhD researchers). So how big they got is a bit of a mystery. And it's true that the "Ultrasauros" shoulder blade is from a different species, it was actually smaller than B. altithorax as an adult, and the Potter Creek remains were probably from a different species as well.
Reply
:iconsameerprehistorica:
SameerPrehistorica Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2013  Hobbyist
I knew you should have it at least somewhat bigger.This image seems fine.There are some images i saw where its body is insanely small.It looked like it weighs 25 tonnes or so.The size for Sauroposeidon in images use to somewhat bigger than Brachiosaurus.Ever since it was confirmed as Paluxysaurus,the body
size is shrinked in images.If it can weigh 50 to 60 tonnes as mentioned before for Sauroposeidon,then why that lean body for Paluxysaurus ?
Reply
:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
I still have many doubts that Sauroposeidon is a Paluxysaurus. But they were definitely related. Sauroposeidon, whatever kind of sauropod it was, was definitely larger than Brachiosaurus, at least if we take a reconstruction based on holotype of Brachiosaurus (which is not fully mature) with some BYU neck material scaled in. Rumors of much larger specimens of Brachiosaurus are currently not proven, although they undoubtedly existed. Given these parameters, a 60-ton Sauroposeidon is plausible.
Reply
:iconsameerprehistorica:
SameerPrehistorica Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2013  Hobbyist
That sounds good.I did imagined it as big.You always make Dinosaurs size as i expect :) By the way,have you seen the battle between Paluxysaurus and Acrocanthossaurus in "Monsters Resurrected" ? They mentioned Paluxysaurus as 36 tonnes.The battle was very funny.One Acrocanthossaurus kills an adult Paluxysaurus.A 36 tonne Sauropod is running away by seeing a 4 and half tonne Theropod.Small kids can believe that.Mostly Carnivores are overrated.
Reply
:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Yes it is interesting. But that Paluxysaurus didn't look fully grown. And actually 36 tonnes sounds excessive for any Paluxysaurus (it was considerably smaller than Giraffatitan) unless you believe it was a young Sauroposeidon. The problem with this idea is that there's an adult shoulder blade of Paluxysaurus with fused suture line which indicates a specimen far smaller than Sauroposeidon.

20-25 tons makes more sense for Paluxysaurus. And while "Monsters resurrected" was a very interesting episode with Acro, they made the Paluxysaurus too bulky and also too short-necked. It had a very long neck which rivaled Euhelopus and Daxiatitan for extremeness of proportions. Also I don't get why they made two very different 3d models of Acro made - the tan speckled "desert camo" one that ran out of the museum was excellent in terms of anatomical accuracy, but the bulky green/hazel brown one that attacked the Paluxysaurus and the Tenontosaurus SUCKED. The proportions on that one were all off, and they didn't even get the head right. The head on the tan model was perfect.
Reply
Add a Comment: