Monday, May 22, 2006


Contrary to what you may have read elsewhere, in books or on Wikipedia, or in one of those so-called "scientific" journals, the largest dinosaur of all time was not Brachiosaurus, or Supersaurus, or Argentinosaurus, or Amphicoelias, or Bruhathkayosaurus. Not by a long shot.

The newly described Stratoposeidon taylori trumped them all. Represented by a complete articulated skeleton from Hell's Attic National Desert in Utah, Stratoposeidon was morphologically similar to Brachiosaurus, only eight times larger. With a shoulder height of 44 meters and a neck 68 meters long, Stratoposeidon was tall enough to browse from the payload compartment of a Saturn V rocket. If Stratoposeidon stepped on a bull elephant, its foot would entirely cover the resulting puddle of elephant juice. Stratoposeidon is estimated to have weighed 17,920 tons (35 x 8 x 8 x 8). When it defecated, a bolus of macerated plant material five meters in diameter and weighing 65 tons would drop from a height of 25 meters, fall for just over two seconds, and hit with enough force to level a barn. Stratoposeidon's feet had a total contact area of 650 square meters, and they exerted a pressure of 270,000 Newtons per square meter (39 pounds per square inch) when the animal was standing still.

Immediately following the publication of the initial description, an anonymous poster on the Dinosaur Mailing List pointed out that the specimens known as Brachiosaurus may simply be juvenile stratoposeidons, in which case Stratoposeidon would become an objective junior synonym of Brachiosaurus! However, this has not yet been demonstrated. Furthermore, the authors that described Stratoposeidon have already responded; they threatened to petition the International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature to preserve the name. One possible outcome of an ICZN ruling would be to sink Brachiosaurus in favor of Stratoposeidon, on the grounds that the former is only represented by juveniles and does not reflect the mature morphology of the taxon.

Below is a reconstruction of Stratoposeidon with various objects for scale, including:
- a Boeing 747 jumbo jet (70.5 meters)
- a Boeing B-52 bomber (48.5 meters)
- a Rockwell space shuttle orbiter (37.25 meters)
- the Millenium Falcon (26.7 meters)
- Brachiosaurus altithorax (=juvenile Stratoposeidon? -- 5.5 meters tall at the shoulder)
- an AT-AT walker (22.5 meters tall)
- a bull elephant (3 meters tall at the shoulder)
- Mike Taylor (1.8 meters tall)
- a Saturn V moon rocket (111 meters tall)
- several double-decker buses (each 10.9 meters long)

I stole the comparative images from various places on the Internet. The 747 and AT-AT came from Jeff Russell's Starship Dimensions, possibly the coolest site on the net.

Labels: , , , ,


Anonymous Anonymous said...

What are you smoking? Whatever it is, you had better stop before you start saying that you have a pet one of these things.
Heres reasons why this claim is impossible
-There is no evidence supporting your claim

-There weren't even trees that tall

-The earth would not be able to support such a massive creature
- your ATAT is scaled wrong

5:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Half of the stuff you have listed has been sized wrong

5:04 PM  
Blogger Dr. Vector said...

Your sense of humor is scaled wrong.

6:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your mom's a Stratoposeidon...

3:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting, indeed :-) What about a small comparison with Godzilla?

2:36 PM  
Blogger Dr. Vector said...

Fraudzilla, more like. This blog is only about stuff that is 100% real.

3:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i believe it 10000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000 percent

10:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, well you have quite the imagination :P

7:31 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Sizing-up a sauropod
So what qualifies a dinosaur as the 'biggest ever'? Length is a popular measure. But you can't discount height and weight. Museums, libraries and other record-keeping institutions refuse to name a single 'biggest' dinosaur. But they do break the title down into categories. Here are the current record-holders:

After supersaurus and ultrasaurus had already dazzled us with their size, a New Mexico team found a sauropod they named seismosaurus in 1991. Its estimated length would have been between 37 and 52 metres (120 and 170 feet). That's the length of a medium-sized passenger jet or a small naval destroyer!

Until recently, the tallest dinosaur on record had been ultrasaurus. But scientists have taken a second look and surmise that ultrasaurus could be the remains of a huge brachiosaur and supersaurus mixed together. What's more, a discovery of an animal with even bigger vertebrae may give the title-holder since 1979 a run for its money. The newly found creature's remains were discovered in 1994. It is called sauroposeiden. If reconstructions prove accurate it could top 18 metres (60 feet) in height.

For sheer bulk, there's no competition. Argentinosaurus - discovered in 1993 - tipped the scales at as much as 100 tons. This lumbering brute - which is part of a special classification of sauropod called titanosauroids - would have been so big that scientists wonder if anything larger would have collapsed under its own weigh. source:

1:18 PM  
Blogger Zach said...

Awesome. I, too, would like to see Godzilla thrown into that size chart, but you have to include the different "versions" of the King of the Monsters: Showa, Heisei, and Millenium versions (not including GMKH:GMAOA and Final Wars). You should also try an' get the Heisei Gamera in there. :-P

7:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe it -10000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000 %

10:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You must be joking.How can anything be that big,it would destroy its enviroment.Why was nothing in the news about such a Archeological find.Get real!!

5:48 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home