17 December 2016
Ending the Year in Fashion
The dinosaur calendar ends the year in a big way. Instead of a single animal to close out December we have two well-known and previously discussed dinosaurs to cover over the next two weeks. The animals in question fit my normal predator/prey cycle of choosing topics which is convenient, and they also go together in discussion as well because they have a shared ecology. This week we will discuss Barosaurus, a large Jurassic sauropod known from deposits in Utah and South Dakota. This 20 ton, 26 m (85 ft) sauropod dinosaur was a member of the diplodocid family of sauropods and possessed a neck composed of up to 16 cervical vertebrae and a tail of upwards of 80 caudal vertebrae. The skull of Barosaurus is so far unknown, but has been rebuilt for museum displays using skulls of Diplodocus and other relatives of the dinosaur as blueprints.