Paleontology

Brachiosaurus



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                Brachiosaurus is the tallest dinosaur and tallest animal to ever walk the earth. It stood at a height of up to 40 feet. It was also pretty long at 92 feet, and heavy at 50 tons. They lived in the late Jurassic period about 156-144 million years ago. Twelve million years is a long time to be around. Their fossils have been found in Colorado, Utah, Tanzania, and possibly Portugal.

            There are a few theories to why brachiosaurus was so tall, but the best one is because of food. All dinosaurs, except sauropods like brachiosaurus, got as tall as they did to reach the leaves at the top of trees where other dinosaurs cannot reach. Brachiosaurus had twelve vertebrae; each one could be over 28 inches long. The length of the neck could reach 30 feet.

            Brachiosaurus had a strange anatomy compared to the rest of the dinosaurs. Its head is very small compared with its body size; it also had a very small brain. Their nostrils were on top on their head, which lead to the theory that they lived in water. One thing that makes brachiosaurus different from any other dinosaur is its long arms. They were longer than the hind legs which raised the chest area. No other dinosaur has longer arms than hind legs. Because of their size they moved very slowly, they could not run or walk quickly. They walked about two miles per hour, but because of their size they did not need to outrun predators. They also need to eat a lot of food to keep up with their massive bodies. It is estimated they ate 440 pounds of food a day. Their heart was also massive pumping machine. They had very high blood pressure to get blood up their very long neck.

            Brachiosaurus was first discovered in Colorado in 1900. They did not find a complete skeleton, but they knew they had found a new, massive dinosaur. After that people started searching all over the world to find these huge dinosaurs. Then between 1909 and 1912 specimens where found in Tanzania and East Africa by German paleontologist Werner Janensch. He used hundreds of local works to unearth thousands of bones. Once they found the bones, each one was carefully packed. Then they were all carried on foot, cross-country, to a port on the east coast of Africa. From there they were shipped to Germany. The bones were sent to Humboldt Museum in Berlin. There the skeleton stood three stories; it was the tallest skeleton in the world and still is.

            Brachiosaurus is the tallest animal ever discovered, and has inspired and awed people from young children to adults. At 40 feet tall, 92 feet long and 50 tons it is one of the largest dinosaurs ever to walk the earth

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