Largest and smallest dinosaurs
Only a tiny percentage of animals ever fossilize, and most of these remain buried in the earth. Few of the specimens that are recovered are complete skeletons, and impressions of skin and other soft tissues are rare. Rebuilding a complete skeleton by comparing the size and morphology of bones to those of similar, better-known species is an inexact art, and reconstructing the muscles and other organs of the living animal is, at best, a process of educated guesswork. As a result, scientists will probably never be certain of the largest and smallest dinosaurs.
The tallest and heaviest dinosaur known from a complete skeleton is the Brachiosaurus specimen that was discovered in Tanzania between 1907–12. It is now mounted and on display at the Humboldt Museum of Berlin and is 12 m (38 ft) tall and probably weighed between 30,000–60,000 kg (33–66 short tons). The longest complete dinosaur is the 27 m (89 ft) long Diplodocus, which was discovered in Wyoming in the United States and displayed in Pittsburgh's Carnegie Natural History Museum in 1907.
There were larger dinosaurs, but knowledge of them is based entirely on a small number of incomplete fossil samples. The largest specimens on record were all discovered in the 1970s or later, and include the massive Argentinosaurus, which may have weighed 80,000–100,000 kg (88–121 tons); the longest, the 40 m (130 ft) long Supersaurus; and the tallest, the 18 m (60 ft) Sauroposeidon, which could have reached a sixth-floor window. The largest meat-eating dinosaur was the Mapusaurus, reaching a length of 14-15 meters (45-50 ft), and weighing in at 8 tons.
Not including modern birds like the bee hummingbird, the smallest dinosaurs known were about the size of a crow or a chicken. The Microraptor, Parvicursor, and Saltopus were all under 60 cm (2 ft) in length.