July 15, 2014 9:09 am

World’s biggest mosasaur makes its home in Manitoba

Bruce, on display at the Canadian Fossil Discovery Centre in Morden, Man., is the largest publicly exhibited mosasaur in the world, the centre says.

John Woods / The Canadian Press

WINNIPEG – Bruce, the 13-metre-long mosasaur at the Canadian Fossil Discovery Centre in Morden, Man., is the largest in the world, the fossil centre says.

“We knew Bruce was big, we knew he was the biggest in Canada, but we had never done a comparative analysis against other exhibited mosasaur throughout North American and the rest of the world,” said discovery centre executive director Peter Cantelon.

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“After doing a little research and consulting with mosasaur expert and Royal Tyrrell Museum palaeontologist Dr. Takuya Konishi, it turned out Bruce was even more significant than we realized.”

The discovery that Bruce is bigger than any other publicly exhibited mosasaur fossil in the world will be celebrated at his 80,000,040th “birthday” at the centre on July 26 at noon. There will be cake, face painting, a water balloon toss and children’s activities throughout the day.

Bruce lived 80 million years ago in the Western Interior Seaway, an ocean the split North America in two from the Arctic Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico. The mosasaurs were predators that were at the top of the food chain in the seaway.

Bruce’s fossil was found west of Morden at Thornhill, Man., in 1974. It took about two field seasons to excavate Bruce, the fossil discovery centre’s website said, and 65 to 70 per cent of his original bones were found.

Morden is a town of about 8,000 residents located 100 kilometres southwest of Winnipeg.

© Shaw Media, 2014

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