Suchomimus was a member of a group of theropod dinosaurs known as the spinosaurids. This group included the large carnivores Spinosaurus and Baryonyx, among others, and thrived in prehistoric North Africa and Europe. Besides their large bodies, powerful teeth, long skulls, and thumb claws, a telltale sign of any spinosaurid were its back spines. These spines are very obvious in Suchomimus. 

This photograph shows how these spines, which reach over a foot tall on parts of the spine, line up on Suchomimus' back. Likely these spines were used to support a sail on the back of the spinosaurids.

 The one on Suchomimus has been reconstructed at about three feet tall. But, recent research by Western Illinois University paleontologist Dr. Jack Bowman Bailey suggests that these spines are more like those in modern bison. Bison spines are used to support a large hump. Therefore, Baily reconstructs a hump on the back of all spinosaurids, including Suchomimus. This idea has yet to gain much steam in paleontology circles, but is considered a very valid hypothesis.

 

Front Skeleton | Upper Body | Skull Front | Skull Side | Skull Comparison | Claws | Spines | Rosette | Back Skeleton | Side Skeleton

See Steve Brusatte's web site Dino Land.

 

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