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Re: Liopleurodon size
> I) The theropod was _Eustreptospondylus_, not _Allosaurus_. (Note that
> fauna in that episode is supposed to be the Oxford Clay).
> II) Although 25 m is probably a stretch, there is evidence that
> _Liopleurodon_ exceeded 12 m.
> III) The inspiration for this scene was, of course, the classic nature
> footage of orcas rushing up beaches to grab a pinniped for lunch, then
> wiggling back into the surf. Of course, that is done on nice sandy
> not up rocky spits!
> Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
from: "Walking with Dinosaurs - The Evidence"
"This [25 metre] size created much debate ... as no palaeontologist thinks
Liopleurodon really got this big. Although several complete skeletons have
been discovered, these are individuals of between 5 and 10 metres in length.
It is less complete remains discovered in the Oxford clay that indicate
lengths greater than this, though here we move into an area of rough
estimates and guesswork. A vertibra at Peterborough Museum would seem to
indicate a pliosaur of between 17 and 20 metres, and various fragments of
snout and lower jaw in other museum collections suggest specimens of similar
Furthermore, any "maximum" length for a known dinosaur is likely to have
less than any species achieved in life. I can't believe for one second that
all the skeletons found just happen to represent the biggest member that
ever lived of each species!!
However, if you're dealing strictly with facts then fair enough, its best to
stick with the stronger evidence and therefore more conservative estimates.
But, if you're only dealing with facts, Walking with Dinosaurs should never
have been made at all... which would have been a great loss.
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