Dinosaur Collector Site BEarly Cretaceous the age of the Ornithichians.    Disney Iguanodon
From The Dinosaur Collector

updated 091006   

More Diorama Early Cretaceous  

Iguanodons are the characteristic dinosaur of the Early Cretaceous.  They found world wide and dominate the fauna of North America, Europe and Asia.  Replacing the sauropods as the dominate herbivore in the Laurasia.   In Gondwanaland the sauropods remain undiminished but relatives of Iguanodon are found.  When the first flowering plants show up in the fossil record is open to question. Some fossil evidence if correct points to the Triassic and molecular data says they split of from the other ancestors of other seed plants in the Devonian, But plants are largely still the same as the Late Jurassic. One idea is that ornithiscian dinosaurs with their complex teeth, generally smaller in size and developed lower feeding habits co evolving with flowering plants.


Disney's movie Dinosaur spawned herds of Iguanodon just like the Early Cretaceous.  The Disney movie received a tepid reception from the dinosaur community.  This is not perhaps a balanced view given the target audience was the preschool and early grade school set.  Certainly it is a step above of the Land Before Time animated videos of Little Foot and his friends.  The dinosaurs were well done , relatively accurate and the panoramic views in the first part of the picture were impressive.  The talking dinosaurs and lemurs didn't bother me much but I think the mixing of animals from different parts of the Cretaceous could easily have been avoided.  Emma the Styracosaurus could just have easily been a polecanthine.  None of the other Late Cretaceous creatures were significant enough that they couldn't have had a Early Cretaceous animal substituted.  The movie generated many high quality reproductions especially of Iguanodon and Carnotaurus. McDonalds was a big supporter of Disney's Dinosaur separate Happy Meal Premiums were released for the US, European, Pacific Rim and Australia. The center Iguanodon the Hasbro Toy version.  The other 3 are from the extensive European series of figures.

Baryonyx may have been as large as 37 feet. had long, flat jaws like a crocodile with a spoon-like snout and the large hand claw was backed up by very strong forelimbs. Whether it attacked other dinosaurs or used its claw to catch fish is as yet undecided.  It had 128 teeth instead of the usual 64 and twice as many teeth in the upper jaw than in the lower jaw. It lived in a sub-tropical delta in association with Iguanodon in England.  Relatives have been identified in South America and Africa.  Sauropelta is a nodosaur from Western North America.  Sauropelta had a long, narrow skull with a flat roof and tapering snout, and bands of large and small shields across its back, and may have also have had spines sticking out from its sides. It was one of the largest nodosaurids.

Iguanodon Disney Dinosaur

Sauropelta and Baryonyx are figures released by Schleich.  The iguanodons are from the McDonalds Europe happy meals premiums.

The large raptors Deinonychus 7 - 13 feet long and Utahraptor  22 feet long show up in the North America in the Early Cretaceous.  Both are more like the JP raptor than the actual Velociraptor from Mongolia.  Polacanthus at 13 feet was a mid sized dinosaur with 5 types of armor triangular, round, flat, keeled and spined .

Raptors are the Kaiyodo JP Pepsi premiums from Japan. Center top is the National Geographic Micro Deinonychus . Center is the black and gold Schleich Iguanodon. The rest are Disney Iguanodons from several different series.

Raptors are the Kaiyodo JP Pepsi premiums from Japan.  Center top is the National Geographic Micro Deinonychus .   Center is the black and gold Schleich Iguanodon.  The rest are Disney Iguanodons from several different series.    

Go to the next Early Cretaceous page with the arrows
Europe Page 1

Wealden page 1 North American hadrosaurine Zone
North America 2

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