Monday, November 24, 2014

Mesozoic Miscellany 69

Newsie Bits

ThinkGeek, the popular on-line retailer specializing in, appropriately enough, geeky gifts, recently began selling fossils. This resulted in criticism from paleontologists, and eventually ThinkGeek's decision to halt the sales, at least for a time. Lee Hall posted about the controversy at Extinct Los Angeles, following his original post with a ThinkGeek reply, and his subsequent response. At Jersey Boys Hunt Dinosaurs - as well as her blog Shaman of the Atheistic Sciences, Lisa Buckley has shared her opinions on how to best approach the collecting of fossils. At i09, Artiofab wrote a series of posts on the issue - here, here, and here. Emily Graslie weighed in at the Brain Scoop blog. The American Association of Applied Paleontological Sciences issued a press release supporting ThinkGeek for selling fossils [PDF].

Around the Dinoblogosphere

At Dinosaur Postcards, Denver Fowler writes about some intruguing early 20th century photo postcards which seem to show paleontological work in the Morrison Formation.

It looks like Kansas has its very own bona fide Mosasaurus, after a history of taxonomic reassignments found putative specimens placed in other genera. Anthony Maltese gives you the low down.

Over at Art Evolved, Herman is back with more dinosaur book reviews, offering a positive look at Sloan's Feathered Dinosaurs and a less glowing review of the infamous How to Keep Dinosaurs.

Mark Witton is selling prints!

Learn about the less-publicized dangers of paleontology at Mary Anning's Revenge.

On the lastest episode of the TetZoo podcast, John and Darren offer a great tribute to Eleanor Kish, who recently passed away - in addition to discussions on the Shanklin croc, bird behavior, and the proud tradition of paleontologists giving lousy advice to artists. Thanks for the shout-out to Marc's 2013 post on Kish, guys!

James Gurney is on Soundcloud, and has been posting Dinotopia audio-books. episodes one and two are currently available. Expect a new chapter every Tuesday for the next three months or so. Gurney writes about the project at the Gurney Journey blog.

On the Dinologue Youtube channel, Brian Switek discusses the Carnegie Dinosaur Quarry at Dinosaur National Monument.

Paul Barrett writes about the Natural History Museum in London's unveiled a new Stegosaurus at New Views on Old Bones. It's the most complete specimen ever found and once it goes on public display on December 4, should be quite a centerpiece for their collection.

At Antediluvian Salad, Duane Nash writes about a visit to Big Sur, musing on redwoods living at the extreme edge of their range, the history of the taxon, and their use in environments in paleoart.

Jurassic World's teaser trailer is set to debut on Thursday, but since this is the way the world works now, there is a teaser trailer for the teaser trailer.

Edited: Well, that was quick. Here's the whole trailer, two days early. In-depth analysis to come!

Extant Theropod Appreciation

At 10,000 Birds, Larry Jordan writes about the Peregrine Falcon's use of tree cavities for nesting sites and shares a video of a peregrine taking on a brown pelican.

Paleoart(ish) Pick

I'm not going to pretend to get the whole Pokemon thing, but DeviantArt recently profiled RJ Palmer, who illustrated the realistic Pokemon series, about his dinosaur obsession and the way it informs his work. They're pretty great, and in the interview RJ gives props to some other great illustrators, including official friend of LITC Paul Heaston. Check it out (er, catch 'em all)!


  1. "Over at Art Evolved, Herman is back with more dinosaur book reviews, offering a positive look at Sloan's Feathered Dinosaurs and a less glowing review of the infamous How to Keep Dinosaurs."

    Many thanks for the shout out!


  2. I am curious as to what you think of the Pliosaurus. It immediately looked out of scale to me so I looked it up and it seems like the largest skulls are in the neighborhood of 8-10 feet, no? Not so much with the 25=30 feet depicted (depending on the size of the great white shark it is swallowing whole) right?

    Their Stegosaurs always seem way out of scale too.

    1. I think it's supposed to be something within the spectrum of what might tentatively be described as a 'mosasaur' - but it looks crappy none-the-less. Would it be unbearably ironic to say that it looks too 'theme-parky'?

      Also, I can think of five organisations that would have a minor quibble or two regarding the slaughter of a white shark for the enjoyment of slack-jawed punters. He he.

      I've got my ticket..

    2. Looks like it's a mosasaur to me, based on the shape of the head and the palatine teeth. But yes, it's insanely big. Why, they're rivalling the WWD TV series in terms of marine reptile inflation!

  3. I'm super thrilled about the new stegosaur - that was always one of my favorite dinos.


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