A Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton nicknamed “Scotty” is officially the world’s biggest, according to a recently-completed study by University of Alberta paleontologists.
“Scotty” lived in prehistoric Saskatchewan 66 million years ago. The bones of the 13-metre long dinosaur were discovered during a dig in the province in 1991, then excavated in 1994.
Despite this, the hard sandstone that encased the bones took over a decade to remove. As such, it’s only recently that paleontologists were able to properly study “Scotty.”
Officials with UAlberta say the record-breaking rex has leg bones suggesting a living weight of more than 8,800 kg, making it bigger than all other carnivorous dinosaurs.
“This is the rex of rexes,” lead study author Scott Persons said in a news release.
“Take careful measurements of its legs, hips, and even shoulder, and Scotty comes out a bit heftier than other T. rex specimens.”
However, it’s not just Scotty’s size and weight that sets it apart. The mega rex also lays claim to seniority.
“Scotty is the oldest T. rex known,” Persons explains. “By which I mean, it would have had the most candles on its last birthday cake.”
In addition, it seems “Scotty” has also claimed the title as the largest dinosaur skeleton ever found in Canada.
”I think there will always be bigger discoveries to be made,” said Persons. “But as of right now, this particular Tyrannosaurus is the largest terrestrial predator known to science.”
Now fully assembled, “Scotty” will soon be on display at the Royal Saskatchewan Museum.
The paper, “An Older and Exceptionally Large Adult Specimen of Tyrannosaurus rex,” was published in The Anatomical Record.
WATCH: Fossil find sheds light on how evolution produced T. rex (2016)