Friday, January 19, 2007

Superposeidon rears its ugly, chimaeric head

In the bookstore at the Big Bend National Park headquarters I picked up a pack of "Famous Dinosaur Playing Cards." Naturally I ego-surfed through them to see if Sauroposeidon made the cut. It did...sorta. See?

In case this doesn't strike you as funny, Sauroposeidon is a big brachiosaur from the Early Cretaceous of Oklahoma. Supersaurus is a big diplodocid from the Late Jurassic of Colorado and Wyoming. The two have nothing to with each other beyond being neosauropods and being rilly big. Superposeidon is a case of typographic and taxonomic confusion; there ain't no such beast. You can see that the creator of the card nicely combined the attributes of both real creatures. The geologic age is that of Supersaurus, the painting is clearly Sauroposeidon, and the length estimate is about right for Sauroposeidon but waaay too short for Supersaurus, which was probably more like 120-150 feet long. Which in turn brings up the issue of how big these critters really were and how we know, but that's a subject for another post.

This isn't the first time that I've run across Superposeidon. Although it first came to my attention on the net, apparently it started as bad copy in a popular dinosaur book. Full story here. You can buy a pack of "Famous Dinosaur Playing Cards" here.

Finally, a page dedicated to bootleg Transformers had this to say:

"Sea Bottom- Complex of Seabottom GG- superposeidon attack on enemy with top-class dynamic and destroying forces having a big sword with extremely great killing forces."

Thanks to Darren for the comic.

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Blogger Sarah Werning said...

I am a little surprised at the slight under-the-skirt shot in the Wonder Woman pic.


9:57 PM  

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