The Carnegie Deinosuchus is Prepared to Give Gator-aid
The Carnegie Collection Deinosuchus
Living outside my sub-rural home is a ditch in which live(d) several rather fearsome creatures....
To some the muddy waters may appear to be nothing more than a small puddle....
But to our Deinosuchus it is home. The muddy water keeps them cool and hides them from potential prey.
They only leave their watery realm to grab something to eat, usually it is delivered, but sometimes involves being chased down, if the chase is comparatively slow and short....
(Here a Safari Ltd. Nigersaurus hurries away from a luncheon date.)
"Hey, hey you! Come back here, or at least slow down...."
Introduced in 1995 by Safari Ltd as part of the Carnegie Collection (opens new window) it is still, after fifteen years, the best Deinosuchus on the market today. The original one lived in the late Cretaceous period and was forty or more feet (12 meters) long and weighed as much as eight to ten tons. This one is just over a foot (30.5cms) long and weighs nine and 3/8 ounces (9.375 oz, 267gms) so it is significantly smaller. One fortieth (1.40) scale, in fact. Just like the majority of the Carnegie Dinosaurs.
Unfortunately global warming, or perhaps just the coming Summer, has dried out their mini-pond...
Forcing the water-loving Deinosuchus to leave their ancestral puddle...
Which took them to a temporary pool....
"Last one in's a rotten birdy egg!"
I remember as a six year old walking out of the Cretaceous Period hall of the AMNH and looking down to my right and seeing what seemed like the biggest, meanest-looking skull I could have imagined. In the display case was the head (skull) of a Deinosuchus, perhaps six or more feet in length and on the plaque to the case it said that this creature grew up to fifty feet in length! I was awestruck and developed a suddenly increased respect for modern-day Alligators and Crocodiles.
(Picture credit: The restored skull of Deinosuchus, featuring (left to right) B. Brown, R. T. Bird and E. M. Schlaikjer [ref: "How the 'terror crocodile' grew so big" by Erickson and Brochu, Nature 398, 205-206 (18 March 1999))
The huge head of the Deinosuchus is very well done, it's multiple teeth individually sculpted and its big mouth open and ready to snap shut on an unwary tasty Tidbitosaurus or passing tourist make it quite fearsome.
The head is very nicely sculpted with lots of personality and very nicely painted...
by what must be very myopic but highly expert toy handpainters in China.
In the meantime the Deinosuchus have found what may be their new home. But first they have to do something about the current dwellers.
(Local residents look askance at influx of uninvited emigres.)
(A face-off ensues but there is really only one possible result.)
(So the original residents hightail it to make room for the new gentry.)
Of course even the new residents must make certain acquiescence for some of the previous residents.
The Carnegie Collection Deinosuchus is one of the best figures from the mid-nineties. This was a period of transition for this collection as it was for other manufacturers as well. They were going from a more toy-like figure, with muddied detail, "generic" shapes and bright-happy colors to the highly detailed and more naturally colored Dinosaur toys that we see today.
Looking down from a Pterosaur's point of view we see the fabulous detail of the Deinosuchus' back (below.
Taking a slightly longer view (below) we see that the overall shape of this figure is basically similar to the modern Alligator (scroll to bottom of long page), although much, much bigger. The Deinosuchus is, in fact, a relative of the Alligator if not an ancestor. Maybe these will reconsider that abrupt eviction near the top of the page.
The paint-job is particularly interesting, combining black down the spine with lighter gray and olive drab on the sides and yellow and paler green on the tail. It is mindful of the digitalized "ambush-camouflage" uniforms of the military.
Being relatives of modern-day Crocodilians has led our trio to consider some modern-day-prey, prey that even the largest Crocodiles consider a bit much.
(The Cape Buffalo [by Safari Ltd] is ordinarily very wary.)
(But it has no reason to reasonably expect an attack from a Deinosuchus.)
"No need for the 'barby.' We'll eat it here."
Taking the cockroaches' point of view (Yes, Dinosaurs had to live with them too) we see the completely scaled belly...
including the throat, the only exception being a 1"x1.5"square where the imprint is.
The Deinosuchus was nothing if not forty feet of appetite, with attitude, and the ability to back it up. Any creature careless enough to come within "ambush range" was in what today we call deep, uh, danger.
(What may appear clear to you can be overcome by thirst.)
(And the Deinosuchus close in....)
(And another one bites the dust. Or drinks the mud. Or something.)
"How about "Maiasaura goes well with a stream of water?'"
(Or a stream of consciousness for that matter.)
The Carnegie Deinosuchus despite coming out in 1995 it is one of the very few figures from that era that has undergone neither a re-paint nor a resculpt. It remains not only the best Deinosuchus on the market, it is an extremely good one. It is also remarkably resilient (see the June 11 Dinosaur Toys Blog "Deinoaccidentus" entry or the Blog Archive entry for that date). I have loved Alligators since I was very small.
Since it remains in production it is readily available from Safari Ltd (opens new window) as well as other retailers on the internet including eBay for from $7.93 to $15.00, plus shipping where applicable, and of course brick & mortar toy stores across our great nation.
Every product imported by Safari Ltd (the Carnegie Collection is made by Safari Ltd) goes through the nearly unlimited toxin-testing process mandated by our panicky congress and all pass with flying colors. You can cook these up or eat them as is with nothing more than a small saw and your own 32 teeth. Of course you'll still be hungry a half hour later. They also have the Euro-centric "CE" of safety, meaning you can have one with a light French cream sauce, if you wish.
The paint is very durable, effectively requiring falling of a vehicle at 60 mph (see aforementioned blog entry) to rapidly damage it, and I have had two for over ten years with only minor wear (apart from the automotive skirmish).
This is a highly recommended figure for any collection. The fact that it has been in production for a long as it has means that there are a lot of them out there. It is a collectible, certainly, a must-have, even, and a classic figure but I doubt that it will ever be worth much beyond its current value. Buy it because you like it, not as an investment. All bets are off if Carnegie comes out with a new one next year, but they told me they are not.
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