The suspension of gravity

At the launch of the Dinosaurs Life! exhibition last night, I made the aquaintance of the amazing Maiasaura. This was a 9m long, 2.5m tall plant eating dinosaur with a toothless beak, cheek pouches, a small crest in front of the eyes and, aparently, a surprising ability to defy gravity!

The exhibition features lots of realistic, live-sized models of dinosaurs, all of which move and and ‘sing’, too. The combination of the models’ stance and movement can lead to some interesting results, though. This particular Maiasuara caught my eye because its pose suggests that it should be running forward, but when it moves, it obviously isn’t running anywhere – it merely waves its front legs about. Unless this dinosaur had some really heavy stones in its bum, or helium in it’s cheek pouches, it would not have been able to strike such a pose.

Can you predict what would happen to this dinosaur (unless it is bolted to the floor…)?

The exhibition is well worth a visit for the experience of coming face-to-face with some huge dinosaurs we usually see only on screens or in books. But trying to spot some of the physical, vocal and behavioural peculiarities of the models can be quite fun, too!

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