Sauropods stomping theropods, redux

April 6, 2011

A month ago, I posted an article containing all the examples known to me of that sadly neglected palaeo-art theme, Sauropods Stomping Theropods: Mark Hallet’s Jobaria squishing Afrovenator, Luis Rey’s Astrodon biting/carrying a raptor, Mark Witton’s Camarasaurus grinding juvenile theropods to dust, and of course Francisco Gascó’s and Emily Willoughby’s Brontomerus pieces, both of them showing Bronto giving Utahraptor a good kicking.

I closed that article with a question and a challenge: had I missed any existing pieces on this theme?  And would anyone go out and make a new one?

Well, there were a few interesting responses in the comments and by email, so I thought I’d report back.

First, I am delighted that David Maas was provoked by the earlier article to produce a speedpaint entitled Sauropod Stomp, whose progress he described on his own site (version 1, version 2, version 3), and which I reproduce here:

I love the boldness of this, and the “Hey!  Quit it!” expression on the theropod’s face.

Also partly provoked by the earlier post — it’s an old project, but only brought to completion in response to our challenge — is Brian Engh’s new Shunosaurus whacking the head of a theropod with its tail club.  (We’ve previously discussed Shunosaurus tail clubs here and here.)  Brian also chronicled the evolution of his image on his own blog (version 1 [scroll down], version 2, version 3), and here is the result:

There are a few more Shunosaurus pieces out there, of which my favourite is Mark Hallett’s Direct Hit:

This image was used in Czerkas & Czerkas’s book Dinosaurs: A Global View.  The original painting is for sale on Mark’s site (as other pieces, including the classic Long March).

Todd Marshall also has a Shunosaurus, but I don’t know anything about its history as the only non-tiny version of this image I’ve found is in Wikidino:

(I think Todd Marshall’s pencil drawings are absolutely sensational, as for example in this Spinosaurus, but for me the colour versions of his work seem to lose something in comparison.)

There’s also a Shunosaurus-whacking-Gasosaurus piece that’s cropped up in various places, but I won’t reproduce it here because I am keen to avoid violating his copyright.

And now for something completely different: Brad McFeeters’s unintentionally carnivorous Omeisaurus, about to find a Scansoriopteryx in its salad.  This was done for ArtEvolved’s sauropod challenge.

Har har.

As we now start to head towards the sillier end of the spectrum, there is this, which Jonathan Kane says is by Emily Willoughby (though I’ve not not been able to find it on her DeviantArt site):

And of course this never-to-be-forgotten classic by our own Darren Naish (previously featured here):

Finally, I urge you to watch this video, which has given me many hours of uncomplicated joy.

34 Responses to “Sauropods stomping theropods, redux”

  1. Lockwood Says:

    This needed to be said… or sung, as the case may be.

  2. Albertonykus Says:

    Most Youtube videos of dinosaur stick figures fighting are rather facepalm worthy, but that one’s quite entertaining!

    One more, Luis Rey’s Supersaurus about to destroy a Torvosaurus:

  3. Mike Taylor Says:

    Luis’s Supersaurus is nice, but it depicts the early phase of an unresolved combat — anything might happen. What I am really looking for is artwork where the theropod’s already lost, and ideally crushed. (It would be cool if Luis could fast-forward the tape by a few seconds and see what happens!)

  4. brian engh Says:

    oh man, darren’s is my favourite!

  5. Adam Baig Says:

    For you dinosaur artists, how about a scene where a Giraffatitan, a brachiosaurid, has a theropod under one of its hands and the theropod is crushed, with the Giraffatitan roaring/trumpeting and looking downward at the crushed theropod. Then, perhaps adding a second theropod, a bit further away, in the action of turning around to retreat, after “getting the message.” This scene would be cool, much like the Barosaurus/Allosaurus scene in the New York Natural History Museum’s mounting.

  6. dmaas Says:

    Had to think of the stomper discussions when i saw this:

  7. Mike Taylor Says:

    David: that is the GREATETS WEB-S1TE EVAH!!!1!

  8. dmaas Says:

    And we need sites like that to see elephant babies getting punted across their pens.

  9. dmaas Says:

    Oops… just noticed that the link is wrong…

  10. Mike Taylor Says:

    David, the URLs you’ve given are inherently impermanent — they just mean “the 23rd newest post on this site”. Here is a permanent link for the elephant one:

  11. Albertonykus Says:

    There’s tons and tons of this in Dinosaur Revolution. Out of the many theropod-sauropod encounters, I can think of only two that ended in any way badly for the sauropod.

  12. James Says:

    Hey, I made that video! Thanks for showing it.

    See the original at

  13. Mike Taylor Says:

    Well, thanks for making it! (Original here at on James’s site.)

  14. ijreid Says:

    I know of one more sauropod pounding theropod image, but sadly, no images are available online. It is featured in the book Planet Dinosaur, which I have a copy of, and shows a Mapusaurus lying on the ground surrounded by a pool of blood with two gigantic footprints embedded in its torso, made by an Argentinosaurus lumbering past it.

  15. Mike Taylor Says:

    That would be awesome! You can’t scan it, or photograph the page?

  16. Mike Taylor Says:

    Well, I found it without too much trouble, as part of a Planet Dinosaur video on YouTube. Here’n the screen-grab:

  17. ijreid Says:

    Stupid me, I just checked images, should have also gone through videos first, as the book was based on a documentary. If you didn’t already know, the books consultant paleontologist is the blogs very own Darren Naish :) Oh btw Mike, what is the license of Mark Witton’s Diplodocus image: because I would like to use it for illustrating the neck posture of sauropods on a commercial website.

  18. Mike Taylor Says:

    From the bottom of the page: “The illustration of the Diplodocus herd was created by Mark Witton especially for this project. It is free to use, provided credit is given.”

    Love your avatar, by the way!

  19. ijreid Says:

    Thanks, thought you would. It’s Lydekker’s original restoration from 1893, and it’s freely licensed. For the image, I have already realized that, but would like to know if it uses a CC-BY licene like this blog.

    One more thing, have any theropods been found in the Ashdown Beds Formation, as I plan on illustrating a scene of a sauropod pounding a theropod, but I need a theropod. If no theropods have yet been found in the formation, so I cannot illustrate Xenoposeidon, what taxon do you suggest I illustrate? So far, Astrophocaudia is a possible choice, found to be related to Brontomerus by Mannion e.a. (2013).

  20. ijreid Says:

    Actually, I do not think I can illustrate Xenoposeidon as, based on my research, the theropod found closest to its locality that is from the same age is Nuthetes which is either a dromaeosaur or proceratosaurid, and only known from teeth. Astrophocaudia is actually quite well off, with sauropods like Sauroposeidon found alongside it, so I think that is what I’ll go with. If you have any other sauropods that you would like to see pounding a theropod, just reply to me, or if you have any suggestions to how the theropod will die.

  21. ijreid Says:

    I have just created a rough version of my image [ here]. Any feedback? In the final version, the yellow theropod will be a Utahraptor, squished by a Australodocus against a tree, and the green theropod will be a juvenile Acrocanthosaurus.

  22. ijreid Says:

    Oops, seems I accidentally messed up with the link, but this is the link to my image

  23. Mike Taylor Says:

    That’s a pretty funny image! It’ll be interesting to see the final version. At this stage, it’s too crude for me to give any useful feedback.

    As far as I know, Mark’s Diplodocus-herd image has never been released under a CC licence. But the wording on the page where we published it looks obviously identical in intent to CC By. If you want to avoid all doubt, you should contact him and ask him if he will explicitly licence it.

  24. ijreid Says:

    I have not drawn out the main scene in the illustration and the link: . I have changed what I’m illustrating replacing my old idea with the Lourinha Formation fauna, any suggestions? In the background I’m going to add a group of two Miragaia, two Dacentrurus and two Draconyx being hunted by Lourinhasaurus and the sauropods Zby and Lourinhasaurus. The image was accidentally flipped, so in reality it is the other way around.

  25. just a random dude -_- Says:

    sauropods did not have to much mobility and its likely a pack of at least 5 large theropods can kill a sauropod. theropods were able to kill sauropods to without a doubt (not easily though) theropods could have used hit and run tactics to tactics sauropod down. (sorry sauropod fans)… -_-

  26. Mike Taylor Says:

    Random dude, what is your reason for thinking this?

  27. some random guy Says:

    oops a typo ;-; (theropods could have used hit and run tactics to take a sauropod down) that’s what i meant ,_,

  28. some random dude Says:

    well don’t you think a sauropod was slow? not that mobile?

  29. random guy Says:

    its not like a theropod can easily kill one though. its a huge risk of injury. i never said a theropod could easily kill a sauropod

  30. some random dude Says:

    but its a possibility. like when you look at modern day animals . like wolves, they can kill animals 10 times there size . (even though both predator and prey were not that smart)

  31. some random dude Says:

    i don’t even see why a lone theropod would even get close to a sauropod but i definitely could see a pack do it -_-

  32. some random dude -_- Says:

    no no not a lone theropod , it would not stand a chance. anyways why would a sauropod attack a theropod for no reason?

  33. just some random dude -_- Says:

    sorry about the spamming…

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