Monday, August 16, 2010

A long list of dragons.

Lots of Chinese dinosaurs often incorporate the word ‘long’ into the genus or species name – Banji long (an oviraptorid), Beishanlong (an ornithomimosaur), Dilong (a tyrannosaur), Guanlong (another tyrannosaur), Mei long (a troodontid), Qiaowanlong (a brachiosaurid), Shaochilong (a carcharodontosaurid), Tianyulong (a heterodontosaurid), Yinlong (a ceratopsian), and Xiongguanlong (yet another tyrannosaur). I’m sure I am missing some, but you get the idea. China loves their dragons. Growing up I was a huge, huge fan of dragons of all sorts (perhaps resulting from my love of dinosaurs), and so it was really excellent to see so many varieties of Chinese dragons during my stay in Beijing. Here’s a few of my favourites and where I found them.

Turtle dragon at Bei Hai Park.

Hoofed dragon at the Summer Palace.

Classic imperial (five-toed) dragon at the Forbidden City.

Blue ceramic dragon at the Temple of Heaven.

Tapir dragon at the Ming Tombs.

As an aside, I know there are also many dinosaurs incorporating the Latin word for dragon (draco) into their names, such as Draconyx (an iguanodont), Dracopelta (an ankylosaur, hooray!), Dracorex (a pachycephalosaur), Dracovenator (a basal theropod), and, what is quite possibly my most favourite dinosaur name ever, Pantydraco (a prosauropod/basal sauropodomorph). Does anyone know of other dinosaur genera or species incorporating the word for dragon from other languages?

*also, did you get the pun in the title of this post?


  1. Great pun. Excellent photos. Really liked the "turtle dragon".