STL Science Center

STL Science Center

03 July 2013

Kafka Distractions

You know you want a hug too.
When I went to search for things to talk about this morning here I got distracted by Kafka's doodle on Google. I thought I should share that I love that doodle. Anyhow, what about Paralititan's minimalist remains is exciting? The most stunning bit of anatomy is, of course, the rather significant humerus that has been discovered. The humerus was about 5.54 feet tall; if you know me personally imagine the "upper arm" of a dinosaur that is the same height as me. Assuming nearly equal distance of the lower forelimb and throwing in a healthy estimate of height (top to bottom) of the relaxed foot, we are looking at a dinosaur that possibly had a shoulder that was nearing 13 feet in height; those estimations are my own and not highly scientific so please do not quote me in an argument with your friends over dinosaur size. The other thing that is most interesting about Paralititan is that, as much as people the past twenty years and more have been fighting the popular image of dinosaurs in swamps with more and more evidence, this is a dinosaur that lived in mangrove territory. Mangroves are a fairly swampy, or at least estuarine, group of trees. That makes Paralititan a swampy dinosaur. At least for times during its life anyhow.

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