The unique artistic talents of Darren Naish: the whiplash tail of flagellicaudatan sauropods

April 6, 2016

Building on the pioneering work of Myhrvold and Currie (1997), Darren Naish (circa 2003) conceived a theory of sauropod defence that has not been as widely accepted as he might have hoped. Sadly, other projects captured Naish’s attention, and his interest in writing up his theory waned. All that now remains of this sadly unpublished work is this speculative life restoration:



  • Myhrvold, Nathan P. and Philip J. Currie. 1997. Supersonic sauropods? Tail dynamics in the diplodocids. Paleobiology 23:393-409.

4 Responses to “The unique artistic talents of Darren Naish: the whiplash tail of flagellicaudatan sauropods”

  1. Andrew Stuck Says:

    I expect this theory (and this illustration) will doubtless be fleshed out in his upcoming vertebrate paleontology book.

  2. Isn’t there an Allosaurus europaeus jawbone with a pathology caused by diplodocid whiplash? Or was Dinosaur Revolution making stuff up?

  3. jrabdale Says:

    “Hello. My name is Dinheirosaurus Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die”. (whack!)

    Anyway, as far as I’m aware, there was a severely deformed Allosaurus lower jaw that was found. As the show suggests, it was likely an early injury from childhood, since it doesn’t look like it was recently damaged. But there’s no way of knowing what caused this injury.

  4. jrabdale Says:

    By the way, when I say “recently damaged”, I mean that it happened just before the animal died. I do NOT mean that it happened last week.

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