It is amazing to think how much new paleontological findings can change the whole nature of the field. It can change how an animal walks, what it looks like or even create brand new species, as is often the case with early figures of Brachiosaurus, which are clearly based off Giraffatitan, as the neck and tail are often shorter than the actual Brachiosaurus.
A long time ago in the year 2005, I was hospitalized for 103 days due to a serious heart condition that nearly claimed my life at the young age of twelve. As a result of this issue, I was eligible for a wish to be granted by the Make A Wish Foundation of America, and it is thanks to them that the subject of today’s review is a part of my collection.
Once there was a time when Theropods simply were divided into ‘Carnosaurs’ (the big ones such as Allosaurus and Tyrannosaurus) and ‘Coelurosaurs’ (the smaller ones such as Coelophysis or Compsognathus). Then along came Deinonychus, an irritating new predator who did not really fit into this concept. When it was discovered in 1969, no one could guess it was the herald of a radically different approach to looking at dinosaurs, eventually leading to a new theory of bird ancestry.
Ankylosaurs are often a popular group for toy companies to make. Like armoured tanks on legs, complete with a powerful club on the tail, these are very eye-catching and attractive to young children. As was the case with today’s review subject: Euoplocephalus by AAA, a toy company that was readily available when I was five years old or so.
In recent years, the pantheon of ornithomimosaur figures has expanded more than ever before. Though still an underrepresented family of dinosaurs, these omnivorous/herbivorous theropods are very interesting oddities that only a few companies have tried to represent. Here is AAA’s attempt at a bird-mimic: Gallimimus, one of the largest members of the family.
Existing for approximately 26 million years, Hyaenodonts were some of the largest predators of the Late Eocene and Early Miocene epochs. Their name comes from the sharp hyena-like teeth used to tear apart possible prey. The skulls of these animals were huge and well equipped for hunting, but their brains were quite small, something typical in primitive carnivorous mammals.
Review and photos by Strawberry Crocodile, edited by Suspsy
Hadrosaurs are often relegated to the role of “supporting cast” in dinosaur media. Despite their success as a group, they simply don’t grab people’s imaginations as much as deadly theropods, record-shattering sauropods, or the absolutely bizarre shapes their ornithischian cousins have taken.
Review and photographs by Funk, edited by Suspsy
Parasaurolophus seems to be the hadrosaur with the most toy representations by far, no doubt due to its charismatic, iconic head crest. It just looks neat, design-wise, compared to, for example, Lambeosaurus with its weird hatchet, Corythosaurus with its dull plate, or Tsintaosaurus and the unfortunate way its crest used to be depicted.
Smilodon. Whether it’s populator, fatalis, or gracilis, one thing is certain: this was a powerful felid, the epitome of ancient mammal predators. Originally from North America, then successfully emigrating to South America during the Great Faunal Interchange, there are few who haven’t heard of this mighty mammal, especially for its 28 cm sabre teeth.