Doedicurus was a large genus of glyptodont sporting a bony carapace and a tail ending in a spiked club. These adaptations may have been for defense from Smilodon, which coexisted with Doedicurus, but the club may also have been used during confrontations with other Doedicurus. These animals could reach 12 feet in length and weigh as much as a Volkswagen Beetle. Doedicurus fossils have been discovered in North and South America where it flourished during the Pleistocene, becoming extinct at the end of the Pleistocene Glaciation roughly 10,000 years ago. It is one of the more well known Pleistocene megafauna and it is possible that early paleoindians utilized the animal as a source of food, though no evidence for this has been found.
It is always nice to see a new genus introduced in replica form. I think it’s great that Safari chose to give us a new animal when they could have easily gotten away with dropping the tried and true Glyptodon on us. The figure is 4 inches long and is in roughly 1:40 scale, which I think is a big bonus with a figure. The armor is painted with a metallic silver color, as are the claws. Some of this color is splashed on each foot as well, but I’m not sure if it is intentional or just sloppy painting. The fur is a rusty brown, and this color also shows between the individual scutes on the carapace. The spikes on the club are dark yellow. The bottoms of the feet have a cool fleshy look. The animal is posed in such a way that it appears to be swinging that massive club. The figure is leaning to the right, putting its full weight behind the swing. I think this was a brilliant way for Safari to give what would otherwise have been a boring figure a touch of life.
As far as glyptodonts go this figure is superb. Safari could have modeled it based off of Glyptodon and been fine, but they appear to have done a little research. The hump at the front of the carapace is characteristic of Doedicurus as opposed to Glyptodon (which had an egg-shaped carapace) and is faithfully reproduced here. The tail club and spikes are also not present in Glyptodon, and end up making for a more exciting figure, which is why I think Safari chose to produce Doedicurus instead. The head is typical of the glytodontidae with its boxy shape and large cheeks, as well as a patch of armor on the cranium. The ears may be a bit big but they’re passable.
All in all, this figure is a very faithful reproduction of a prehistoric mammal which is quite well known from the fossil record. If you like expanding the genera in your collection or are a mammal enthusiast, this is for you.
Available from Amazon.com here.
Join the dino-discussions at the Dinosaur Toy Forum!