Planet Dinosaur: Ultimate Killers

Synopsis: Adapted from the multi-award winning BBC1 series, Planet Dinosaur Ultimate Killers recreates the lost world of the dinosaurs in a groundbreaking stereoscopic production.
Genre: Documentary
Director(s): Nigel Paterson
Actors: John Hurt
50 min


We are living

through a dinosaur revolution.

We have pushed the boundaries of

our knowledge further than ever before.


We have a completely new understanding

of the greatest killers

ever to walk the Earth.


One killer, first discovered in Egypt,

has become the icon

of these new predators.

A giant dinosaur, with two-metre-long

spines rising over its back.

It was unlike anything seen before.

It was only in 2005,

when a complete upper jaw was found,

that we could accurately reconstruct

this bizarre creature.

With a skull almost two metres long,

this dinosaur was a colossal 17 metres

from nose to tail.

Four metres longer than T-Rex.

The reign of the dinosaurs began

almost 250 million years ago,

but this killer didn't appear until

a time known as the mid-Cretaceous.

95 million years ago,

its home in North Africa

was a desert surrounding

a vast system of rivers and swamps.

The swamps are refuges

for many large dinosaurs,

like the duck-billed Ouranosaurus.



They are also the hunting grounds

for a killer.




the biggest killer

ever to walk the earth.

An 1 1-tonne colossus.

However, for the time being,

these Ouranosaurs

are off this killer's menu.

Spinosaurus is part of a relatively

newly discovered family of dinosaurs.

They've been found in South America

with Irritator,

in Europe, there's Baryonyx,

and Asia, Siamosaurus.

But the last and biggest of all

came from North Africa:

Spinosaurus itself.

And studies of their bones and teeth

revealed something amazing.

Spinosaurus is a predator,

but one that hunts in water.

Spinosaurus is unique.

With long, narrow jaws and nostrils

set high on its head,

its teeth were straight and conical,

and it had a curious pattern

of holes in its snout,

which give us a clue to how it hunted.

These are Onchopristis,

eight-metre-long giant sawfish.

In 2008, a Spinosaurus skull

was put through a CT scanner.

It revealed that the holes

and sinuses in the snout

looked just like those of crocodiles.

It's thought these contained

pressure sensors.

Sensors that, like a crocodile,

can detect the movement of prey.

It can strike

without even seeing its victim.

Anywhere else, this eight-metre Rugops

might be the top carnivore.

But here, it is dwarfed by Spinosaurus,

a predator that adapted to exploit

an environment so successfully

it evolved into a 17-metre giant.

Spinosaurus is the biggest

dinosaur predator ever discovered,

but it wasn't the first giant killer.

The first giant killer dinosaurs

appeared much earlier.

They lived in the Jurassic period,

1 50 million years ago.

One of the most iconic is Allosaurus,

from the Morrison Formation

in North America.

Yet it's only recently that

we have been able to work out

how these predators hunted.



Allosaurus is the most common killer

in these lands.

Nine metres long, with a battery

of saw blade-like teeth,

Allosaurus is a formidable hunter.

A lone Camptosaurus

should be an easy kill.

Allosaurus teeth were serrated

front and back,

perfectly evolved

for tearing through flesh.

However, recent research has indicated

that Allosaurus's bite was

surprisingly weak.

Calculations suggested its bite

was less powerful than a lion's.

So just how did thisJurassic monster

hunt and kill?


Camptosaurus relies on its keen senses

to avoid predators.

Allosaurus, on the other hand,

is a fast and powerful ambush hunter.




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Tom Brass

Tom Brass is an academic who has written widely on peasant studies. For many years he was at the University of Cambridge as an affiliated lecturer in their Faculty of Social and Political Sciences and at Queens' College, Cambridge as their Director of Studies of the Social and Political Sciences. For many years he was an, and then the, editor of the Journal of Peasant Studies. Murray reports Brass as being "dismissive of the cultural turn in peasant studies" and the rise of post-modern perspectives and his notion that this has been a conservative process and that it has lent support to neoliberalism. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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