As one starts the shopping experience at the mouth of the river, one cannot help but be impressed with the sheer selection of dinosaurs available. No where else in the Midwest can you see such a variety, from the creaky old timers to the fast, sleek, and shiny.
A popular feature looked for in dinosaurs today is an ability to mimic their environment. Gone are the days when owners wanted a monster. The Puteulanus Unda Diligo seen above blends into the water and sky, and is particularly good at catching it's own prey, making upkeep that much easier. Also, it fits easily into corners.
Speculum Liberi are quite a common site in larger metropolises, but are not as hassle free as their big brothers. They have a tendency to be egotistical and territorial, and they are not good with small children. If you are going to keep several of them, be sure there is only one male in the herd.
I tend to be old fashioned in my taste, which is why I love these Chalybs Flumen Os. They may not do much during the day, but watch them carefully towards dusk.
Chalybs Compages of Fatum, another nocturnal river frequenter, is a joy to watch, if you have the patience. Here, in a rare daytime sighting, we can see the mother on the look out for predators, while her child plays in the water. Chalybs of all sorts are very maternal.
The grand Mellis certamen of parcus Moestitia mate for life.
A group of quadratus Northmanni feed in the sunlight.
The Ebullio gum Monasteriense is certainly large and imposing, but dinosaurs this old tend to be a little crabby and not very social. They are ideal for the elderly owner, who desires companionship without the hyperness of youth.
A particularly dangerous species, the Stipes Muneris Periculosus will chew on anything it comes across. It lies in wait like a rock, letting the victims climb over it's seemingly uniform facade, until the moment is right. Then a large gaping mouth sucks the food in like a vacuum tube. We were lucky to be able to get so close without startling it.
Finally, my favorite was the Lux lucis quod Viaticus dinosaur. Look at the beauty and grace! And a healthy one like this can live for centuries, making them an excellent investment.
Of course, it's important when keeping beautiful creatures like this in captivity to try and recreate their natural environments as much as possible. The keepers of the Chicago sanctuary make sure to keep the river shores stocked with small snacks and treats, in order to stimulate the minds of their charges and give them some exercise. If you are thinking of setting up your own display, talk to your local commissioner, who will be able to tell you the freshest suppliers.
Other dinosaur pics (otherwise known as the Chicago Architectural Boat Tour, if you want to be a killjoy) can be found here.