T. rex Autopsy (Sorta)

Hi everyone! This is just a quick post, but I thought I might share an interesting experience I had today…

As some of you may know, the Dinotopia exhibition that had been on display for the past few months closed on May 25th. Our awesome museum volunteers and staff handled the paintings, leaving the fossils. Getting the fossils down to the collections room safely fell to a team that included myself.

However, there was one item that required a bit more effort. Mr T. is a cast of the skull of AMNH 5027 (a T. rex specimen), and although the cast isn’t as heavy as the real fossil, it’s still a task to carry the thing down a flight of steep, short stairs and through a doorway without breaking anything.

Mr. T's upper half.

Mr. T’s upper half. Photo by the author, 2015.

Two of our amazing volunteers brought the skull proper, and the rest of us were left with the lower jaw, which can easily be disassembled into two pieces. Mr. T. is a terrific cast of AMNH 5027 and really shows the skeletal anatomy of Tyrannosaurus’s skull in detail.

Mr. T's lower jaw disassembled. His head is in the distance. Photo by the author, 2015.

Mr. T’s lower jaw disassembled. His head is in the distance. Photo by the author, 2015.

After we arrived in the collections room, our space issue became even more apparent. After a long debate on where the skull should go, a shelf top was chosen. We still have to tie it to the wall (which we’re planning to do tomorrow), but it’s in a safe place and will be completely A-OK, so never fear!

Thar He Lies! Don't worry, there's foam under the skull. Photo by the author, 2015.

Thar He Lies! Don’t worry, there’s foam under the skull. Photo by the author, 2015.

We also have this really nice cast of one of Mr. T’s teeth. Check it out!

What big teeth you have! Photo by the author, 2015.

What big teeth you have! Photo by the author, 2015.

Mr. T was the last to go back into the collections room, but don’t worry, as we have a whole lot planned for our fossil collection in the future.

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