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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
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The first hi-fi skeletal of the giant titanosauriform 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 the second hypothesis at the present time, but it is interesting to note that both Sauroposeidon and Paluxysaurus do show strong similarities with Chubutisaurus in the shape of the hypantrum, the overall more "top-heavy" proportions of the dorsal vertebrae, and the odd interlocking twist in the radius and ulna - features not found in brachiosaurs. Thus although I initially classed this animal as a brachiosaur, it is likely somehtign more derived - this brachiosaur-like silhouette is somewhat out of date, and we would probably be looking at a profile and posture that comes out more like a cross between a brachiosaur and a euhelopodid.

A number of brachiosaurs, 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, which I plan to illustrate. Interpret that as you will.

For those who are wondering - no, Sauroposeidon is not the biggest dinosaur, and it's not even the biggest basal titanosauriform. "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 euhelopodid bifid neural spines, which Sauroposeidon totally lacks).

References:

Wedel, Mathew J.; Cifelli, Richard L. (Summer 2005). "Sauroposeidon: Oklahoma's Native Giant". Oklahoma Geology Notes 65 (2): 40–57

Wedel, Mathew J.; Cifelli, R.L. and Sanders, R..K. (2000). "Osteology, paleobiology, and relationships of the sauropod dinosaur Sauroposeidon". Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 45: 343–3888.

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): 109–114. doi:10.1671/0272-4634(2000)020[0109:SPANSF]2.0.CO;2.
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:iconforbiddenparadise64:
ForbiddenParadise64 Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2017
I heard that Paluxysaurus has been lumped into Sauroposeidon now, making them the same genus, with the former being immature specimens of the latter . Surely that may help construct them?
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:iconspinoinwonderland:
SpinoInWonderland Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2017
The holotype of the former has a fused scapulacoracoid, it cannot be an immature stage of the latter ;)
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:iconforbiddenparadise64:
ForbiddenParadise64 Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2017
Cool. Do you think it's more likely than not that allometric scaling occurred with the French Monster?

And what do you think of Gigante de Rio Negro if anything?
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:iconspinoinwonderland:
SpinoInWonderland Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2017
There were probably some allometry involved, but we really don't know what as of now.

"And what do you think of Gigante de Rio Negro if anything?"

Never heard of it.
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:iconforbiddenparadise64:
ForbiddenParadise64 Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2017
Seems reasonable.

es.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gigant… This is all I could find on it. So huge, but not a record breaker.
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2017  Professional Traditional Artist
D'Emic (2012) lumped them but I do not agree. They are very similar but not the same species, probably not the same genus either.

However your point about reconstructing them makes sense. But using Paluxysaurus may not be necessary to reconstruct Sauroposeidon, since there are already some juvenile sauroposeidon specimens from Montana and Wyoming (Cloverly Formation) which D'Emic published in that same paper, and this material is complete enough to restore its proportions with some accuracy. Then the "adult" holotype neck bones can be used to scale the adult neck which will likely be more elongated than the juvenile neck.
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:iconforbiddenparadise64:
ForbiddenParadise64 Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2017
Would cladistic neck allometrics be quite common among the larger sauropods compared to their relatives. I'm contemplating constructing the French Monster and wonder if it may allometrically increase its neck from Sauroposeidon's.
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2017  Professional Traditional Artist
That is a good question.

I should really finish up my Paluxysaurus skeletals, that will at least give a reference point. I think the French Monster had an allometrically longer neck than Paluxysaurus but perhaps comparable to Sauroposeidon (my Sauroposeidon is outdated). These guys had crazy-long necks possibly on the level of Erketu. It's hard to tell which is bigger, the Sauroposeidon holotype or the French Monster. I will have to restore Sauroposeidon based on the juvenile remains to be sure.
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:iconforbiddenparadise64:
ForbiddenParadise64 Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2017
Hmm. You once estimated to me that "Francoposeidon" would be around 10% more massive or so, possivly greater, and your friend Bricksmashtv estimated it to be 1/6 more massive or 5% larger (linearly) assuming similar proportions.
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2017  Professional Traditional Artist
It could be... I thinks it's probably bigger than Sauroposeidon but that was assuming Sauroposeidon had limb proportions like Giraffatitan (as in my old restoration), but now the fact that it was likely a chubutisaur means it's possible that the adult's femur (not found) was likely larger than I had guesstimated, which may bring it closer in size to that of the French Monster. If Paluxysaurus is any clue for this family, the crazy humerus/femur ratios of brachiosaurs became a little less crazy in Chubutisaurs.

Conversely it could mean that both humerus and femur were shorter than in my old Sauroposeidon restoration, with the forelimbs needing more reduction due to the change in proportions (chubutisaurs had high shoulders but not as high as in most brachiosaurs). So that would mean a bigger chance of "Francoposeidon" being bigger than Sauroposeidon.

At this point it could go either way, though I would *like* to think the French Monster is the bigger one.

Truthfully I can't make any certain claims about which is bigger until I have time to do a skeletal of Sauroposeidon based on the cloverly material and then scale it up with allometry for the neck to the size of the holotype. Good thing is that the cloverly juvenile material includes the femur and humerus and a good bit of the torso, so there is something to estimate the proportions from.
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:iconyutyrannus:
Yutyrannus Featured By Owner May 15, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
When will you post your updated Sauroposeidon skeletal and/or your Paluxysaurus skeletal?
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner May 19, 2016  Professional Traditional Artist
Soon I hope. Working on Giraffatitan revision first.
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:iconyutyrannus:
Yutyrannus Featured By Owner May 20, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Ah, okay. The top view still being a pain?
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner May 23, 2016  Professional Traditional Artist
Yes, this beast has a crazy incline on the torso and it's making the ribs a mess to draw in top view.
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:iconqueen-britonia:
Queen-Britonia Featured By Owner Dec 19, 2015
Wow ... That's one huge dinosaur O_O
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Jan 24, 2016  Professional Traditional Artist
Yes indeed. But this restoration is wrong. It's out of date and I will have to change it soon, it turns out Sauroposeidon may not have looked like this, but more like a somphospondylian.
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: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.
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: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.
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: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.
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: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).
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: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?
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: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.
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: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 ?
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: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.
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: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.
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: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.
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:iconsameerprehistorica:
SameerPrehistorica Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2013  Hobbyist
I agree the bulky green/hazel brown Acro SUCKED.Its face looked like a cartoon.
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:iconanime-kokoro:
anime-kokoro Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2013  Student Writer
it's a really cool dinosaur... would be cooler if it had a larger brain though. it was stuck with a brain that weighed only 4oz.
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Aug 20, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Actually the brain would have been much larger than 4 oz. The brain of Giraffatitan is 500 cubic centimeters in volume (comparable to a chimpanzee brain in size). And Sauroposeidon was a bigger animal than Giraffatitan (or at least the Giraffatitan specimens that have been found with skulls, which are not fully grown), so with everything scaled up, the brain would be larger too. 500 cc is around 1.5lbs, not 4 oz.
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:iconanime-kokoro:
anime-kokoro Featured By Owner Aug 20, 2013  Student Writer
w-wow. that's amazing. i was simply referencing a documentary on the huge beast.
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Aug 25, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Yeah documentaries get a lot of things wrong.... mainly because they never seem to listen to the recommendations of the experts they hire (Clash of the Dinosaurs being a notorious example) and also the producers never read the scientific papers. They probably think that sauropods had tiny golf-ball sized heads, but in reality the skull of Giraffatitan is over 3 feet long (and not even a full grown one mind you...). A chimpanzee brain size for such a large animal doesn't seem like much, but it's pretty impressive when you consider that it only needs to coordinate the movements of a slow, straight-legged animal that didn't even have opposable thumbs or flexible finger joints like a chimpanzee, much less any tree climbing ability or the need to make or use tools. Also brain size alone is not the indicator of intelligence, it's much more important to look at the shape of the brain and which parts of it were more pronounced. For example the brain cases of brachiosaurs and other sauropods indicate very good vision and hearing, a decent sense of smell, but not much grey matter. It's not a problem when you realize that they moved in herds and could have shared a sort of "hive mind" intelligence together, and the average predator wasn't that much smarter in terms of cerebrum size.
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:icondino-mario:
Dino-Mario Featured By Owner Nov 15, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
This looks Cool!!!
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Nov 16, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
It will look even cooler when I put in the newly described juvenile remains from Montana. That small specimen is a lot more complete than you see here, just haven't had time to update it yet.
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Oct 28, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Interesting. Only problem is, D'emic published it with price gouging publishing pirates Wiley, which is outright betrayal of science [link] in my book.

Come on people, OPEN ACCESS! PLoS, Palaeo-Electronica, Royal Society, APP, and even PeerJ are all there for the taking. Any one of them is thousands of times better than Wiley, because then everyone will be able to access your research and you don't have an oligarchy of greasy-fingered non scientist publishing bureaucrats privatizing it for profit. Why the hell would you sign away the exclusive intellectual property rights to your hard research away FOR FREE to a crooked company like Wiley which restricts access to the free flow of publicly funded scientific scientific research (not just paleontology, but also journals containing potentially life-saving cutting edge medical research) behind exorbitant paywalls? I'm not going to pay thousands for annual subscriptions to a handful of journals and then an additional $60 to access the odd article of interest published in other Wiley/Elsevier/Springer/GSW journals. Heck, if even a university as rich as Harvard is canceling its subscriptions to the likes of Elsevier and Wiley [link] , it's obviously too exorbitant to be responsible science publishing. These guys gouge something like 40% profits from their journals annually, not to mention exclusive rights to reprint. Even EXXON can't sell you the same exact barrel of oil over and over again, for such exorbitant profit margins!

D'Emic has clearly nailed his colors to the mast here and decided not to be part of the Open Access solution. And no matter how right or wrong his conclusions may be, he is NOT advancing the cause of science by publishing with Wiley. Even if Sauroposeidon were a Somphospondyl, D'Emic is no longer the person to prove it to us. This is bigger than Sauroposeidon, it's a global problem in paleontology.

I suggest everyone who wants to see the paper write to D'Emic in protest and tell him to publish in an open-access journal so that his research truly benefits the admittedly cash-strapped field of paleontology instead of lining the pockets of a faceless middleman comglomerate. If even Harvard can't afford such a system for its libraries, there's something seriously wrong with it, and if E'Emic is an ethical person he will immediately realize this. Anyone who's tried to do business with the big pay journal science publishing conglomerates knows they are rotten to the core and will not listen to reason. Perhaps the scientists who publish with them may be a little more logical and understanding.
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Oct 22, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Joe Daniel is misquoting some VERY old news. Like, from 2009, three years ago. Matt Wedel actually changed his views very quickly when I pointed out to him that the pes prints of Breviparopus actually were larger than those of Giraffatitan, not smaller than those of Diplodocus. Read this subsequent comment by Wedel after I showed him the raw data on the actual prints: [link]

"UPDATE (Nov 17 2009): The width of the Breviparopus pes tracks is 90 cm, not 50 cm. The story of the 50 cm number is typically convoluted. Many thanks to Nima Sassani for doing the detective work. Rather than steal his thunder, I’ll point you to his explanation here [link]. Point A above is still valid: Breviparopus was dinky compared to the Broome and Plagne trackmakers."

Matt Wedel made an error in calculation, which he acknowledge when I pointed it out. The hindprints of Breviparopus are 90cm wide, which is larger than the feet of Giraffatitan (70cm) and the Paluxy prints (78cm), and definitely much larger than the feet of diplodocus (50cm). Yes they were still not record-breaking, but they absolutely dwarf Diplodocus.

So in reality, Breviparopus was very big, probably 115 ft. long if you scale off of the prints, and 120 ft. long if you account for caved-in edges which make the feet look smaller than they were. Of course that's still a LOT smaller than whatever made the colossal Broome and Plagne tracks, and considering that titanosaurs were wider and heavier than brachiosaurs, Breviparopus could still easily be outclassed by the top 10 biggest titanosaurs in mass. But the "smaller than Diplodocus" claim was a mistake which Matt Wedel himself has long disowned. Dutuit and Ouazzou got it wrong, the hand prints were a little over 50cm wide but these were heavily caved in so the actuall hands were wider. The feet were 90cm wide or more, as there was some slight caving in those prints too. Ishigaki (1989) drew a far more accurate scale diagram of the prints which shows how huge they really were.

It's sad that people quote only Matt Wedel's initial statement as the final word, without paying any attention to what he himself said just a little bit later. That's called quote-mining, and is a very biased misrepresentation of Wedel's views. In science more information is constantly becoming available, so it makes no sense to quote what a scientists said 3 years ago while ignoring what he said more recently.
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:iconalgoroth:
Algoroth Featured By Owner Jan 15, 2013  Professional General Artist
Matt Wedel is a class act.

As are you!

But! I still wish you'd muscle the legs up a little.
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:iconcaprisaurus:
Caprisaurus Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2012
Result! Another dinosaur from Algeria!
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Oct 16, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
What? You mean a new find? Links please, I would be very interested to see that.
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:iconcaprisaurus:
Caprisaurus Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2012
No, no! I was talking 'bout "Brachiosaurus" nouragedi. Sorry!
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Ok yes that is from Algeria but it's a pretty old discovery. The real question is why haven't there been any better photos of the sacrum since it was originally published by Lapparent? (And where is this fossil being kept anyway?)

Both "Brachiosaurus" nougaredi and Breviparopus were likely bigger than Sauroposeidon. Though how much bigger is very difficult to say. One is only known from a sacrum (and some other bits which are from much smaller, probably unrelated sauropods) and the other is only known from footprints.
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:iconvasix:
vasix Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'd never realized that there was a juvenile specimen discovered. But why this lumping issue with Paluxysaurus?
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Sep 9, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Well just looking at the two animals, there are some pronounced differences in vertebral morphology with Paluxysaurus (neural spine angle, neural arch position, shape and spacing of the zygapophyses/coupler mechanisms), and you can't just chalk this up to ontogeny, since Paluxysaurus is similar in size to the juvenile Sauroposeidon. Also there's an adult shoulder blade known from Paluxysaurus, with the scapula and coracoid fused together. This individual is an adult yet still far smaller than the type specimen of Sauroposeidon, indicating they are probably not the same species or genus.

Then there's the issue of range. Paluxysaurus is only known from Texas, whereas Sauroposeidon (if the juvenile animal from Montana really is a Sauroposeidon) seems to range all over the midwest and rockies states from north to south. Many dinosaur species were localized - that is, they lived in a particular area and did not migrate or spread over large ranges (so movies like "march of the dinosaurs" are fraught with behavioral inaccuracies). However whether this same rule applied to sauropods as much as it did to Late Cretaceous ornithischians is debatable. Many sauropods, like Giraffatitan, Brachiosaurus, Janenschia, and Euhelopus, appear to be very localized and clearly did not colonize large areas let alone whole continents. For Sauroposeidon to have such a large range of habitats is unusual, though not impossible. However, Paluxysaurus is not known from such large ranges (though it may have lived as far north as Montana, no remains so far have been found there). The femur shafts also show some differences.

If skull material from Sauroposeidon is found, it may settle this matter once and for all. Especially the nasal bone. The site in Montana probably contains more juvenile specimens, there are actually two of them described in D'Emic's paper.
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:iconvasix:
vasix Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Anyhow, I wonder if anyone could synonimize them anyway since Sauroposeidon is only known from those neck vertebrae, and Paluxysaurus is known from so much more. We do not have any Sauroposeidon adult shoulder bones, right? I myself was confused about this.
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Sauroposeidon is actually known from a far more complete juvenile specimen which CAN be compared with Paluxysaurus (please read the other comments on the page :D)

The juvenile specimen is still different enough from Paluxysaurus to be a different genus IMO. Funny enough, the shoulder blade of the juvenile Sauroposeidon is known, and it's not conclusively the same shape as either of the Paluxysaurus shoulder blade individuals (no closer than, say, Cedarosaurus).
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:iconvasix:
vasix Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Oh, sorry, I posted without looking....:)...I had in fact accepted Paluxysaurus as just any old titanosauriform (non-brachiosaurid) myself until all this synonimization nonsense took hold.
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:iconpaleo-king:
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
It's funny because the only cladistic analysis of any consequence ever done on Paluxysaurus found that it groups closest with Brachiosaurus when compared to representatives of other clades. It has ONE major feature which is shockingly more somphospondylian than brachiosaur however, that's the kinked femur. But it's possible that some brachiosaurs had this too, after all the femur of the Brachiosaurus altithorax holotype is badly flattened by crushing. It may have had a bit of a Paluxysaurus-like kink in life. However the kink is not present in Giraffatitan, which is known from uncrushed femora.

Looking at the shoulder blade of Paluxysaurus, it could honestly go either way. There's not that much difference between the two groups. The dorsals look far more brachiosaurid though. Moderately tall neural spines, neural arches of average height, all spines are singular rather than bifid, pleurocoels and neural spines similar in shape to those of Eucamerotus and other brachiosaurs.
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:iconvasix:
vasix Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I suppose that's why "Monsters Resurrected" turned it into a nondescript-looking somphospondylian (albeit, mind you, I have never cared for that show much), but there should be a skeleltal of Paluxysaurus at least somewhere, shouldn't there? I think :iconsteveoc86: has done one, and it's a little brachiosaur [link]
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