Megalosaurus stalks sauropod dinosaurs

Jurassic Beach

Richard Bell’s  nature diary, North Yorkshire, Wednesday, 19th November 2008


previous | home page | this month| e-mail me | next

previous | home page | this month| e-mail me | next

180 million years ago

A FAMILY GROUP of sauropods, each adult the size of three African elephants, wander about chomping the cycads and horsetails, untroubled by the ostrich-sized predators, Coelophysis, running by.


But they’re wary of an unseen menace lurking in the undergrowth: the top predator of the day - not Tyrannosaurus rex, which wouldn’t appear until the end of the Cretaceous period 100 million years later - this is Megalosaurus, nine metres in length and weighing a ton.

Williamsonia 'seed fern' pecten fossil
Horsetail fossil
Cycad fossil

Williamsonia Pecten
‘Seed Fern’

Horsetail stems,
from Port Mulgrave

type specimen
(i.e. first fossil of this species described)

Plant Fossils


Yorkshire Rock, a journey through time: my book is now available at Willow Island Editions

Fossils sketched in the Shell Geology Now Gallery Rotunda Museum

Dinosaur Coast



Theropod dinosaur footprint
Tridactyl ornithopod pes. footprint

Dinosaur Footprints

Tridactyl ornithopod pes.
Burniston Bay

The carnivorous theropod (middle toe longest) dinosaur that made this 35 cm long track stood 1.5 metres tall at the hip.

The theropod dinosaur that made this 16 cm long foot-print, stood 60 cm. at the hip.

Theropod trackway 1
Theropod trackway 2
Theropod trackway 3
Theropod trackway 4
Sauropod manus left hand print

Left hand manus (forelimb) print of a sauropod: the size of a large waste-paper bin.


Footprints from a trackway (not to scale) of a theropod, 40 cm at the hip, calculated to have been running at 15 mph.



Dinosaur delta: these cross-bedded sandstones at Scalby Mills, North Bay, Scarborough, date from the mid-Jurassic when dinosaurs roamed the subtropical forests of ferns, cycads and conifers.