Sauropod Gigantism

  title={Sauropod Gigantism},
  author={P. Martin Sander and Marcus Clauss},
  pages={200 - 201}
S auropod dinosaurs were the largest animals ever to inhabit the land (see the figure). At estimated maximum body masses of 50 to 80 metric tons, they surpassed the largest terrestrial mammals and nonsauropod dinosaurs by an order of magnitude. With body lengths of more than 40 m and heights of more than 17 m, their linear dimensions also remain unique in the animal kingdom. From their beginnings in the Late Triassic (about 210 million years ago), sauropods diversified into about 120 known… 
Biology of the sauropod dinosaurs: the evolution of gigantism
There is no evidence, however, that resource availability and global physicochemical parameters were different enough in the Mesozoic to have led to sauropod gigantism.
Sauropod dinosaurs evolved moderately sized genomes unrelated to body size
The results suggest that the variation in size and architecture of genomes in extinct dinosaurs was lower than the variation found in mammals, and suggests that neutral forces did not dominate the evolution of genome size in this group.
Lower limits of ornithischian dinosaur body size inferred from a new Upper Jurassic heterodontosaurid from North America
A new ornithischian dinosaur from the Late Jurassic of western North America that rivals the smallest theropods in size, Fruitadens haagarorum, is reported, suggesting that this taxon was an ecological generalist with an omnivorous diet within Dinosauria.
Earth’s oldest ‘Bobbit worm’ – gigantism in a Devonian eunicidan polychaete
Whilst the fossil record of polychaete worms extends to the early Cambrian, much data on this group derive from microfossils known as scolecodonts. These are sclerotized jaw elements, which generally
An Evolutionary Cascade Model for Sauropod Dinosaur Gigantism - Overview, Update and Tests
This review focuses on the sauropod gigantism ECM, providing an updated version based on the contributions to the PLoS ONE sauropods collection and on other very recent published evidence.
Revision of the sauropod dinosaurs of the Lower Cretaceous Trinity Group, southern USA, with the description of a new genus
Cladistic analysis indicates that Astrophocaudia and Sauroposeidon are members of Somphospondyli, whereas Cedarosaurus is a brachiosaurid.
Inferences of Diplodocoid (Sauropoda: Dinosauria) Feeding Behavior from Snout Shape and Microwear Analyses
These results reaffirm previous work suggesting the presence of diverse feeding strategies in sauropods and provide solid evidence for two different feeding behaviors in Diplodocoidea, such that non-selective, ground-height behaviors are restricted to open, savanna-type environments.
Ten more years of discovery: revisiting the quality of the sauropodomorph dinosaur fossil record
Spatiotemporal changes in fossil specimen completeness can bias our understanding of a group's evolutionary history. The quality of the sauropodomorph fossil record was assessed a decade ago, but the
Osteohistology of Rapetosaurus krausei (Sauropoda: Titanosauria) from the Upper Cretaceous of Madagascar
The largest known Rapetosaurus was still growing, whereas some small juveniles exhibit an unusual pattern of bone erosion and replacement in the context of peripheral lines of arrested growth that signal a temporary pause in bone apposition, and it is hypothesize that these signals may relate to the drought-stressed ecosystem inhabited by Rapetaurus.
Sauropod dinosaur osteoderms from the Late Cretaceous of Madagascar.
The adult-sized osteoderm is the most massive integumentary skeletal element yet discovered, with an estimated volume of 9.63 litres, and Uniquely, this specimen possesses an internal cavity equivalent to more than half its total volume.


Bone histology indicates insular dwarfism in a new Late Jurassic sauropod dinosaur
A new diminutive species of basal macronarian sauropod is described, Europasaurus holgeri gen. et sp.
Dinosaurs, dragons, and dwarfs: The evolution of maximal body size
The body mass of the top species was found to increase with increasing land area, with a slope similar to that of the relation between body mass and home range area, suggesting that maximum body size is determined by the number of home ranges that can fit into a given land area.
Dinosaurian growth patterns and rapid avian growth rates
It is shown that dinosaurs exhibited sigmoidal growth curves similar to those of other vertebrates, but had unique growth rates with respect to body mass.
Necks for sex: sexual selection as an explanation for sauropod dinosaur neck elongation
Information is used to test the predictions of two competing hypotheses proposed to explain the significance of the long neck of sauropods and it is found more plausible that increases in sauropod neck lengths were driven by sexual selection than by competition for foliage.
In vitro digestibility of fern and gymnosperm foliage: implications for sauropod feeding ecology and diet selection
Using a feed evaluation test for extant herbivores, it is shown that the energy content of horsetails and of certain conifers and ferns is at a level comparable to extant browse, which makes possible a more realistic calculation of the daily food intake of an individual sauropod and improves understanding of how large herbivorous dinosaurs could have flourished in pre-angiosperm ecosystems.
On the Evolution and Adaptive Significance of Postnatal Growth Rates in the Terrestrial Vertebrates
  • T. Case
  • Biology, Environmental Science
    The Quarterly Review of Biology
  • 1978
The results of this analysis support the notion that growth rate is adapted to certain features of an animal's environment, which will be altered in an empirically appropriate direction with changes in these environmental parameters.
Reconstruction of the cervical skeleton posture of Brachiosaurus brancai Janensch, 1914 by an analysis of the intervertebral stress along the neck and a comparison with the results of different approaches
Abstract. The neck posture of Brachiosaurus brancai Janensch, 1914 is reanalysed by employing the Preuschoft method to deduce the pattern of stress in the joints between the vertebral centra along
Oxygen and Evolution
Changes in atmospheric oxygen concentration may be linked to key evolutionary events during the past 550 million years.
Paleobiology of the dinosaurs