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Meglania weighed only 1 tonne (long)
My casual mention of the fact that fully terrestrial reptiles do not exceed
about one tonne has led to one of those frustrating and not very useful
back and forths. Here and the facts and my last comments on the issue for
Hecht (1975) examined all the remains of the giant monitor Meglania, and
calculated the maximum dimensions and weights. He came to the reasonable
conclusion that the lizard weighed less than one tonne. This is in agreement
with my model, which was proportioned after the mounted skeleton (a profile
of which is published in Dinosaur Eggs and Babies). These mass values apply
to the largest published remains.
Auffenberg calculated over 2.2
tonnes for the same remains. However, this was based on a size-mass curve
for the Komodo ora that only went up to 2.5 m and 50 kg. If Auffenberg's
estimate is correct, then the super lizard was about as big as
Daspletosaurus, which my model shows weighed about 2.3 tonnes.
For some reason some one thought comparing a lizard and a tyrannosaur was not
useful. Why was not explained. In fact it tells us a lot.
Daspletosaurus was 9 m long, Meglania at most only 7 m. The trunk vertebrae
of the tyrannosaur were
110 mm long, the biggest example from the lizard was 67 mm long. The
tyrannosaur's toe claw was 150 mm long, the largest Meglania toe claw (from
the biggest known individual according to Hecht) was a wee little thing of 85
mm. In all respects the skeleton of the biggest lizard was much smaller than
the tyrannosaurs, and weighed about half as much or less.
Those who wish to argue that Meglania weighed well over one tonne, please
make a model and publish it first.