Simon Clabby

The British Dinosaur Review Seminar, 2003

A report by Simon M. Clabby

   
Simon Clabby

The British Dinosaur Review Seminar was held on the 5th of November, 2003, at the Newport Quay Arts Centre, IoW, and was hosted by Dinosaur Isle and the University of Portsmouth.

The talks went as follows;

Hugh Torrens
The historical background to the British invention of Dinosaurs in 1842.
A nice introduction to the history of dinosaurs, focusing on how all dinosaur material discovered before 1842 should be refered to as a To-Be-Dinosaur, as they were up to that point only large lizards. Showed the first slide of the Mantell-Piece of the morning.

Mike Benton (University of Bristol)
Dinosaurs of the British Triassic - skeletons and footprints.
Early dinosaurs of Britain, looking at some Early Triassic "dinosaur" footprints that were actually sedimentary structures and distorted Cheirotherium, as well as the skeletal remains of Bristol and South Wales. Prof. Benton also made reference to the lack of Plateosaurus and small theropods like Halticosaurus, suggesting half-seriously that the lack of Plateosaurus may be due to them being too big to fall down the Mendip Fissures.

Paul Barrett (Natural History Museum, London)
A review of British ornithischian dinosaurs.
All the ornithischians (except Callovosaurus and another one I forget), reviewed and described briefly. Showed the second slide of the Mantell-Piece of the morning. Dr. Barrett also reminded all present about a certain host's claims of 6000 Hypsilophodon in the Hypsi beds.

David Norman (Cambridge)
Iguanodon - a focus for palaeobiological research.
David Norman talked about Iguanodon. Stressing the importance of complete skeletons, Dr. Norman showed the amount of information that can be gained from Iguanodon. Also gave us our third and final slide of the Mantell-Piece of the morning.

Paul Upchurch (University College London)
British Sauropods in their global context.
A review of British sauropods, showing which names are more valid than others, and that the IoW Titanosaurus is no such thing.

John Martin (Haley Sharp Design, Leicester)
The Return of the Cetiosaurus: taxonomy, nomenclature and relationships of a historic British sauropod genus.
Cetiosaurus oxoniensis is made the lectotype of Cetiosaurus, and Cetiosaurus brevis is an indet. sauropod, possible Pelorosaurus, with bits of Iguanodon.

Angela Milner (Natural History Museum, London)
Baryonyx, a fish-eating dinosaur (Theropoda: Spinosauridae) from southern England and the palaeobiology and palaeogeography of the spinosaurids.
As with the Iguanodon lecture, pretty much the same as we've heard before, with the discovery and relatives being found worldwide. Also stresses how important Baryonyx is to our knowledge of spinosaurs, as it was the first really good specimen, and that Suchomimus is a synonym of Baryonyx.

Darren Naish (University of Portsmouth)
The coelurosaurian theropods of Britain.

A very technical but entertaining review of coelurusaurian theropods of Britain, including two dromaeosaurs, the possible velociraptorine Nuthetes and our old friend Ornithodesmus.

Angel Galobart, with Gaete, R., Santos, A., Suñer, M. and Vila, B.
New dinosaur sites in Catalonia and Valencia (J/K Boundary and Upper Cretaceous) and a short overview of Mesozoic sites of Spain.
This was sadly cancelled due to technical problem.

Eric Buffetaut (CNRS)
On the track of French Cretaceous dinosaurs - in the field and in museums.
A look at dinosaurs from France - a bit odd for a seminar on British Dinosaurs, but there you go.

James Kirkland (Utah Geological Survey)
England at the Crossroads: Early Cretaceous Dinosaurs from Utah indicates the Last Mesozoic Pan-Laurasian Fauna predates Alaska.
Lots of dinosaurs from Utah, which again seems a bit odd for a seminar on British Dinosaurs, although Utah seems to have a very similar fauna to the Wealden of Britain. Also much was said about the Mussentuchit Formation, which has a mildly amusing name, and we were told to go and collect all the dinosaurs there.

abstracts should be available on-line from Dinosaur Isle's website, www.dinosaurisle.com
[Due to a delay in this occuring, Abstracts are now available in the Palaeontological Associations Newsletter (Starts on Page 48)]

During the talks we found out that the following were first found in Britain.

After the talks, Dave Martill gave a summary of what we'd been told, and most of the attendees then went to Dinosaur Isle, where a selection of drinks and nibbles awaited us, as well as a perfectly preserved Scelidosaurus that had featured on Channel 4's Pilot show for Big Monster Dig, Dinosaur Detectives. Also on display was a model of the skull of Caulkicephalus, as featured on Big Monster Dig, from the Isle of Wight, made by Bob Loveridge, a big theropod hand made by Steve Hutt and some of Luis Reys artwork.

On the 6th a fieldtrip was organised, taking attendees to Grange Chine, to see the Neovenator locality, Dinosaur Farm Museum and Hanover Point. Sadly, I was unable to attend

   
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