Welcome to Superoceras, a blog about science and natural history, slightly biased towards paleontology and zoology, but inclusive of all sciences. Started in October of 2009, my goal is to communicate scientific knowledge (and the occasional piece of nonsense) in an informative and entertaining manner. Feel free to contact me with questions, comments, concerns, or criticism at superoceras(at)gmail(dot)com, and follow me on Twitter @Superoceras for all that and more in 140 characters or less!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010's "7 Dinosaurs You Could Take in a Fight"

My friend Susan over at Crurotarsi: The Forgotten Archosaurs recently posted a link to's "The 10 Lamest Dinosaur Names" before I could get myself together with a post, so I wanted to beat her to the punch with this one.'s "7 Dinosaurs You Could Take in a Fight"

While I have to admit that Compsagnathus, Archaeopteryx, Microraptor, and Epidendrosaurus might not be able to inflict a terrible amount of damage on your average human (given the impossible scenario that a human would ever encounter one), I still think they'd be able to get a quick bite or scratch in there if you aggravated them. Nigersaurus could definitely break a few bones if it bumped into you, but as long as you didn't run up to it screaming your head off and flailing your arms, it would probably remain pretty calm and go about its business. But Therizinosaurus would definitely put the hurt on you with its meter long, scythe-like claws. It's reasonable to believe they used them to fend off predators, and I'm sure they were pretty effective defensive weapons. And Carnotaurus would probably straight up eat you. The unnamed dinosaur they advise not to harass is Masiakasaurus. I probably wouldn't recommend it either, even though its dentition indicates it probably fed on fish and small mammals.

Still, it's a great article for any paleo enthusiast, and there are a couple really good zingers in there. Thanks!


  1. Damn you David Tana! (but thanks for the plug)

    It's probably best you got to it first. There aren't too many Crurotarsans that could be readilly taken on in a fight (maybe Effigia).

    But yeah, I would stay the hell away of Therizinosaurus and Carnotaurus. We all saw what happened in "When Dinosaurs Roamed America" when that dromaeosaur tried to pick a fight with a therizinosaur... bitch slap!

  2. Nigersaurus is the size of an Indian elephant: no way would I tangle with it. Carnotaurus was the apex predator of Maastrichtian Argentina: nope, way to dangerous. Therizinosaurus has badass claws and rivals Tyrannosaurus in mass.

    On the other hand, Masiakasaurus is small enough that you can clobber it with a baseball bat!

  3. I'm glad to hear we're all in agreement on this. Don't fight dinosaurs!

  4. Definitely no fighting Carnotaurus or Therizinosaurus, but I've seen Nigersaurus up close. It has bones in its skull so thin that you can practically see through them, so a baseball bat and some swift feet could do the trick. Not sure why you would want to tho.