This sub-adult Edmontosaurus, from the family of duck-billed dinosaurs (hadrosauridae), was collected in a fossil bone bed of this species in Eastern Wyoming.Dinosaur skeletons in this quarry from individual dinosaurs of different stages of development has been used as evidence to support the idea that Edmontosaurus lived in groups and possibly even migrated in family units. Skeletons of young individuals have allowed scientific inquiry into the Ontology or change in morphology with aging, giving researchers a better understanding of what 'growing up' was like for this type of dinosaur. When compared with the skeleton of an adult of this species an observer can detect the changes in proportions of skull features and also in the pelvic girdle which show how the animal's body would have changed with time as it grew into adulthood.
Multiple skeletons of this animal are available for lease, including one mount which was specifically created as a hands-on model for students of any age to assemble and dissasmble as a public program in museums, schools or private functions. This unique, experience allows a rare chance for students to interact with a museum object while learning about the functional morphology of a well-loved, young dinosaur.
This giant browser herbivore, from the family of duck-billed dinosaurs (hadrosauridae), once roamed the coastal plains along the western interior seaway in large herds. Their fossil skeletons are found sometimes numbering hundreds of individuals in one locality. These bone-bed deposits can be found from Canada to Colorado, and provide evidence that Edmontosaurus lived in groups and possibly even migrated. This is also one of the dinosaur species found by researchers to have evidence of Cancer in it's fossil bones, making them an important group for further study. One of the last non-avian dinosaurs on earth, these were dominant land animals at the time of the great extinction event at the end of the Cretaceous period.
Hands-down this is the most popular dinosaur of all time. Tyrannosaurus rex was the largest carnivore in it's environment and would have preyed upon the giant duck-billed hadrosaurs and horned-faced ceratopsians which were it's contemporaries. Fossil evidence shows that this ferocious animal was likely an opportunistic carnivore, which would hunt prey as an apex predator as well as scavenging for it's meals. Research into the bite force of this animal shows that it's jaws and giant teeth were designed for crushing through large bones and thick flesh.
Pachycephalosaurus wyomingensis is a favorite in discussions among dinosaur enthusiasts and research paleontologists alike. This bipedal, plant eating dinosaur had an exceptionally thick skull roof, the origin and function of which has been the subject of controversy since the creatures were first discovered in latest cretaceous rocks of the western united states. Many dinosaur researchers believe that the 'domes' of thick bone on the top of the animal's skull developed over time as part the animal grew into adult-hood. Others argue that smaller specimens with different cranial proportions constitute separate species of dinosaurs. With regard to the function of these thick skull bones, various theories have been suggested including defense, display, and intraspecific competition.
The dromeosaurs were a group of bird-like theropod dinosaurs commonly referred to as "raptors". This common name illustrates their supposed bird-like niches within the ancient ecosystem. Many specimens in this group have been shown to have had feathers in life and some researchers even believe that the dromeosaurs are better classified as birds than dinosaurs, though this is not the consensus among paleontologists. Compared with others in the family dromeosaurus albertensis. was particularly robust, and is thought to have had a bite-force 3 times as powerful as it's close relative Velociraptor.
Originally described by Barnum Brown in the Horseshoe Canyon formation of Canada, this ferocious Tyrannosauridwas smaller than T. rex but would have preyed upon many of the same groups of prey animals as that giant relative. The genus is named for Alberta, Canada and the localities where this ferocious dinosaur was discovered and the species name translates to "flesh-eater", an appropriate moniker when one considers the many sharp teeth that lined the massive jaws of this specimen.
The name Struthiomimus translates to "mimic of the ostrich" and indeed, this dinosaur has much in common with the swift flightless bird of modern times that is it's namesake. It is estimated that this speedy dinosaur could clip along at speeds of 30-50 miles per hour! It's neck constitutes roughly 40% the length of it's body, it has a small slender head, and a toothless beak. These similarities were among the first clues that eventually led paleontologist to favor an horizontal posture for most bi-pedal dinosaur groups over the previously asserted "kagaroo-ish", tail-dragging pose that was originally suggested. As early as 1916 researchers mounted Struthiomimus to mimic the posture of modern flightless birds. It was not until much later that this basic functional morphology was adopted for groups like Tyrannosaurs and the duck-billed Hadrosaurs.
Thescelosaurus neglectus skeletons have been found in Wyoming's lance formation since as early as 1891 but, as indicated in it's name it was 'neglected' by scientists for 20 years before being described in 1910. The genus name translates to "Marvelous" which is has to do with the fact that many of these specimens are found fully intact and at least partially articulated. This animal may have been the most common dinosaur that roamed the floodplains of the Lance and Hell Creek formations in the American west. They likely browsed the first several meters of foliage from ginkos, ferns, and cypress and the common flowering trees. Many complete skeletons are known from channel sandstone deposits, which has been taken as evidence that this species spent at least part of it's life near the river channels that meandered across the floodplains. Our mounts are posed looking backward as if the animal was 'on alert' in the presence of one of the large Tyrannosaurus with whom it coexisted.
Champsosaurus was an aquatic reptile with strong jaws and pointed teeth for preying upon fish. In appearance and in habit this group of reptiles closely resembled the modern, long snouted crocodiles known as gharials. Like crocodiles and other marine reptiles like the marine iguana, this animal probably swam with lateral body movements, with it's limbs pinned tightly against it's body to increase it's streamline when it was hunting (fishing) for it's prey.
Though considerably smaller than many of it's dinosaur contemporaries, Didelphadon is actually quite large for a latest-cretaceous mammal. This marsupial mammal probably had a role in the coastal plain ecosystem that resembled that of a modern-day otter. Strong jaws on this creature suggest that it was capable of crushing shells and it is infrered from teeth that this omnviorous mammal probably fed on mollusks.
Trace fossils are the geological remains of biological activity. One variety of trace fossil which allows researchers the rare chance to study the behavior of ancient animals comes in the form of footprints and trackways left behind from an animals activities. Paleontologists seek to use the fossil record to study ancient life, and trackways can provide details about the life of an ancient organism that would be unknown with only fossil skeletons to study. The Zerbst family trackway was excavated in 1996 by a Wyoming ranch family and is considered by researchers to be the single most significant assemblage of latest-cretaceous tracks ever discovered. In all there are are traces from 10 different track makers including two Tyrannosaurs, an Edmontosaurus, Struthiomimus, a pair of Oviraptors, a crocodile and a variety of birds. From this fossil alone, paleontologists are able to glipse as if through a window into a latest-cretaceous watering hole where dinosaurs and their ancient contemporaries were hunting, escaping, swimming and flying through the landscape.
Our 30+ foot long specimen was cast from the original fossil which is much too massive to be quarried or moved into a museum. It can be displayed horizontally as it was originally discovered, or mounted as a 2 dimensional display on a wall to save gallery space and allow for up-close inspection of the individual tracks. Custom artwork by renowned paleo-artist Patrick Redman brings this scene to life in full color oil-on-canvass and also in digital format for display and promotion in galleries.