Thursday, 17 April 2014

T Rex To Reveal Itself At The Smithsonian - via D R Shoop

This week, scientists at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History will start unpacking some rare and precious cargo. It's something the Smithsonian has never had before — a nearly complete skeleton of a Tyrannosaurus rex.

Most people don't know it, but the T rex that's standing tall in the Natural History Museum in Washington, DC, is a fake — a cast, a copy of the bones. It's an accurate replica, but for decades the Smithsonian has coveted a real skeleton of a T rex — the charismatic, 30-foot-long beast that's not only deliciously frightening to contemplate, but fascinating to scientists.

How did such an animal grow so large? How fast did it run? Was it a predator or a scavenger?

Now, courtesy of the Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman, Montana, they've got one.

On a recent day, the Bozeman museum's director, Shelley McKamey, shows off a cast of the T rex's skull on exhibit. The skull is more than four feet long, almost as high, and its gaping maw could bite a cow in half.

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