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The Brachiosaur Parade by Paleo-King The Brachiosaur Parade by Paleo-King
2009 Paleo-King

Featured on The Paleo King [link] and SV-POW [link] - it's the Big Bad Brachiosaur Parade!

The fourteen best-known brachiosaur genera as of mid-2009 (before Abydosaurus and Qiaowanlong were described - sheesh, I wish they'd been discovered and described a few months earlier!). All brachiosaurs drawn to scale with the largest known T. rex specimen (MOR 008, not Sue) and labeled for easy reference 8-)

Here's the lineup:


"the Archbishop"

The footprints at the bottom are those of Pleurocoelus and Breviparopus.


Note: The "Brachiosaurus" shown here was B. brancai, which is now formally known as Giraffatitan (though the alternate name has been used since 1988, first and foremost by Gregory Paul). However, the type species B. altithorax was of similar average size.

The entire sequence is roughly in order from the earliest brachiosaurs to the last, with the exception of the basal dwarf brachiosaur Europasaurus.
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Celestial-Rainstorm Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Fantastic illustration. I grew up thinking Brachiosaurus was the tallest dinosaur. But! Just look at the size of these beasts! 

And little Europosaurus XD I'd ride her to school. 
Paleo-King Featured By Owner May 18, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Yes Europasaurus is pretty cute. But it's not the smallest brachiosaur anymore, apparently. The Croatian Dwarf is even smaller.

There are a number of dinosaurs that were taller than Brachiosaurus (or at least its holotype specimen, which died before reaching full size). Sauroposeidon, Puertasaurus, Daxiatitan, and a whole host of other vertical-necked high browsers. However few dinosaurs were both taller AND heavier. Perhaps only the really big titanosaurs like Puertasaurus and Alamosaurus.

Breviparopus was apparently also outclassed by "Brachiosaurus" nougaredi, a species that needs its own genus and was NOT a form of Brachiosaurus, although it probably was from the same family. This beast is known mainly from an imcomplete sacrum, but probably approached 130 feet assuming it had similar proportions to Giraffatitan.
Celestial-Rainstorm Featured By Owner May 18, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Good lord, and to think our planet was once blessed with these creatures. 
ForbiddenParadise64 Featured By Owner Apr 22, 2014
Great graph. I based my graph on yours :) 
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Apr 22, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks! :D
ForbiddenParadise64 Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2014
Wait, regarding your tyrannosaurus, I've heard that MOR 008 was smaller than sue and just had an unusually elongated skull. What's your view on this? 
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Since I don't know of any postcranial remains for MOR 008 (far as I know it's just the skull) I can't make that kind of judgment.

The real problem is that it's a fragmentary skull, and all the big T. rex skulls are roughly similar in size. But with varying proportions. Whether MOR 008 ends up reconstructed bigger or smaller than Sue's skull depends on the prophetions you give to the missing parts. Restore it like Sue or Wankel (long upper jaw, deep cranium region, big overbite) and it's bigger than Sue. Just like Jack Horner did it (one of the few things I agree with him on). But if you try to reconstruct it like the AMNH specimen or Stan, it comes out a bit smaller than Sue.

Of course MOR 008 isn't just along skull, it's also a thick and deep one. So the whole "it's a younger animal with a more gracile skull" rumor simply isn't true. It's possibly the most mature and robust T. rex skull on record. The rugose nasal bone indicates an even older and gnarlier-looking animal than Sue.

My view is since its morphology is more like Sue than any of the other T. rexes, it is probably most correct to restore it like Sue, in which case it comes out bigger. There's a tendency to the most conservative estimates possible that is popular among many paleoartists nowadays, which I think sometimes goes too far (i.e. people restoring titanosaurs with thin rib cages like diplodocids, based on crushed and deformed rib fossils that don't fit with the wide hip shape - nobody bothered to reconstruct their uncrushed life appearance.)
ForbiddenParadise64 Featured By Owner Apr 22, 2014
Of course my infinicollid graph is nowhere near as good as your work and more deta
palaeorigamipete Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
How much fossil material is there of breviparopus? The size seems borderline insane! XD
Paleo-King Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
There are only footprints. But these, at nearly 1m wide, are still much smaller than the bigger sauropod prints that have been found. The tracks at Plagne, Frange, and those of Parabrontopodus distercii are pushing 2m wide.

Breviparopus is not alone even among brachiosaurs. "Brachiosaurus" nougaredi is known from a partial sacrum that when complete, was probably up to 60% longer than that of the Brachiosaurus altithorax holotype. So we're talking about a creature that may have topped 120ft. long. The largest Giraffatitan specimens, HMN XV2 and HMN Fund no, appear to be from individuals in the 90-100 foot range. And apparently based on the scaled quarry maps of Abydosaurus, its adult individuals approached 100 feet long as well.…
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