All Posts from May, 2014

Ticinosuchus proudly presents itself

May 14th, 2014 | By Anna Klapper in Parco San Marco | No Comments »

Hi kids,

DinoI ‘m Ticinosuchus, the famous dinosaur from Ticino. There are lots of stories about me. Obviously my family and I were around a very long time ago but our little brothers and sisters have survived even to this day. Maybe you’ve already seen them at Parco San Marco? That’s right! They’re the little salamanders that run around all over the place or bask on the rocks in the sunshine. What’s more, the little turtles that drift around lazily in the fish pond are also related to me.

When the first fossilised dinosaur bones were found here over 200 years ago, it was thought that they were giant salamander bones. No-one knew at that time that we had existed so could not have known that they were our bones. The word ‘dinosaur’ translates as ‘terrifying lizard’. Scary, eh? I wouldn’t have frightened anybody, but many dinosaurs were alarmingly large. The Brachiosaurus, for example, was up to 16m high. A giraffe is already really very large compared to you, at 5 to 6m. Like you human beings, there were dinosaurs everywhere on Earth. Only we were there 230 million years ago. That’s so long ago, it was long before even your great-great-great-great-grandparents were alive.

NilkrokoSo that we get to know each other better, because we’ll be seeing each other all through the year at Parco San Marco, I will tell you a little bit more about myself. My favourite food was fish but I could also eat meat if necessary, as you can easily tell from my teeth. If you look at this and at my other bones, it might make you think of a crocodile and that’s quite right, because crocs are part of my family. I was also roughly the same size, about 3m long. Nevertheless, I was fast and quite agile. This is important when you have to catch your own food. My back and belly were covered with tough scales so I couldn’t easily be hurt. That’s why dinosaurs lived for a long time. Only illness or disease could kill us. If you want to know more about me, come and visit me at the Monte Giorgio Fossil Museum.ticinosuchus_empreintes

Till then, have fun trying to solve the Parco San Marco treasure map. My little family will accompany you safely here and there along the way through the grounds.

See you soon!