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Re: Raptor Red and Heyday Of The Giants

> Date: Fri, 11 Feb 2005 21:06:18 +0100
> From: David Marjanovic <david.marjanovic@gmx.at>
> > _Sauroposeidon_ is another huge mid-Cretaceous sauropods; and it
> > had a close relative across the Pond, known from a single neck
> > vertebra ("Angloposeidon", from the Isle of Wight).
> Ah. Yes. Been there, seen the vertebra in IIRC 1999 during
> preparation. At IIRC 1.23 m in length, it wasn't all that much
> smaller than I, especially in volume. When was the "name" invented?

The English specimen referred to here is the single brachiosaurid
cervical vertebra MIWG.7306 recently described in:

        Naish, Darren, David M. Martill, David Cooper and Kent
        A. Stevens.  2004.  Europe's largest dinosaur?  A giant
        brachiosaurid cervical vertebra from the Wessex Formation
        (Early Cretaceous) of southern England.  Cretaceous Research
        2004: 1-9.

(For brachiosaur lovers, and aren't we all?, that paper also contains
beautiful, big photos of cervicals 5, 6 and 7 from the Tendaguru
specimen HMN SI.)

Sadly, MIWG.7306 is rather a lot smaller than David remember: 745mm in
length, although the specimen is missing most of the condyle, so the
total length in life would have been somewhat longer.  That's not to
call it _small_ -- it's the longest cervical vertebra described from
Europe, and compares with 870mm for the longest cervicals of HMN SII
(C10 and C11).  On that basis, Darren suggests that the IoW vertebra
is from an animal whose length would have exceeded 20m (and I think he
is being tad conservative here).

Regarding the name "Angloposeidon" -- I don't know how this got out,
and it probably shouldn't be perpetuated.  It is empahatically not a
scientific name, just a nickname used for that particular specimen.
The paper does not name the new specimen, nor refer it to any existing
genus or species: it is left as brachiosauridae _incertae sedis_
because it's too bashed up to allow more resolution than that.  (Plus
there's only one of it; someone, I forget who, has posited that four
vertebrae is the smallest nameable unit of sauropod material :-)

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