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Re: dinosaur questions



On Sat, 15 May 1999, Allan Edels wrote:

>     I was about to answer, and suggest Mike's site, and Jeff Poling's (among
> others) that could help you.  Then Mike sent his message.    I checked the
> Mike's list of records for the largest, and Mike says that _Argentinosaurus_
> is the largest.
> 
>     Yet, elsewhere, he says: "_Amphicoelias fragillimus_ was named for an
> enormous vertebra which has since been lost (if it ever existed). Only a
> drawing remains, which claims that the vertebra was 2.4 m tall, making the
> animal about 45 m long and possibly the biggest land animal ever, at 100 to
> 150 metric tonnes."

Yeah, I didn't include it on the Records Page since there is no material
for it. But I just added it, with a question mark.

> Greg Paul has estimated its length as 40-60 meters
> long, which is 130-200 feet long.  (DinoFest International Proceedings 1996
> (Publ. 1998)).

Updated (on the Records page -- the _Amphicoelias_ page will update itself
Monday morning).

> He also indicated that a 'world record' individual of that
> species could have weighed as much as 200 metric tonnes.

I'd think it more likely that that *is* a 'world record' individual,
possibly of _A.  altus_... 
 
>     To be specific, there was only one vertebrae ever found, by E. D. Cope,
> which has since disappeared.  (One would imagine that something that huge
> would be noticed easily).

This is probably faulty memory, but didn't it crumble or something? Hence
the specific name "fragillimus"?
 
>     BTW,  there are often several species per genera.  (_Triceratops_ has 15
> species,

All but two of which have been sunk -- even then, some feel there is only
one. The non-avian dinosaur with the most valid species is probably
_Psittacosaurus_, with about 8.

> _Tyrannosaurus_ has one - or two depending on how you classify
> _Tarbosaurus_).

I list _Tyrannosaurus_ with 5 species, although 2 (_T. lancensis_ & _T. 
novojilovi_) could be juveniles of other species (_T. rex_ and _T.
bataar_, respectively) or members of their own genera (_Nanotyrannus_ and
_Maleevosaurus_, respectively), and _T. efremovi_ could be a _T. bataar_
subadult (or is that _T. bataar_ that could be a _T.  efremovi_ adult?) 
Arrr, what a mess...

--T. Mike Keesey                                    <tkeese1@gl.umbc.edu>
WORLDS                                  <http://www.gl.umbc.edu/~tkeese1>
THE DINOSAURICON                               <http://dinosaur.umbc.edu>