You probably know by now all the jokes on the internet about the T. Rex small arms. In truth, even today scientists couldn’t give you a good explanation for those tiny forelimbs that one of the greatest predators that roamed the Earth had.
But they are set on finding out the answer fairly soon. The Field Museum in Chicago holds one of the finest T. Rex skeletons in the world. Though its gender is unknown, the ex-dinosaur was named Sue, after its Discoverer, Sue Hendrickson. Hendrickson discovered the fossil on a ranch in South Dakota in 1990. It has been on display at the Field Museum since 2000.
If you plan to make a visit to the museum these days, you may see something strange about the large skeleton. Upon close inspection, you’ll see that Sue is missing a hand. Don’t worry; no one broke into the museum just to steal it.
In fact, scientists from the Argonne National Laboratory borrowed the fossilized forearm for just a little while. Over the next few days, they will try to uncover the mystery of the T. Rex small arms.
The main bones of the arm, the radius, and the ulna will be scanned in order to generate a full 3D image, making it possible to observe even their cellular level. Sue’s skeleton showed many signs of injury, so it’s possible that this is the best specimen chosen for the study.
In fact, the forelimb was borrowed before from the museum, by National Geographic, which wrote about Sue a few times.
The Tyrannosaurus Rex (a name which could be roughly translated as “tyrant-lizard king”) lived around 65 to 70 million years ago, during the Late Cretaceous period of the Mesozoic geological era. In fact, it was one of the last dinosaurs to walk the Earth before their mass extinction. It was obviously carnivorous, but many scientists still argue whether he was indeed an apex predator, or merely a scavenger.
They are fairly certain that his massive jaws often gave the most powerful bite in that any terrestrial animal could have given. Maybe the study of the T. Rex small arms will give us some clues about the true nature of the most well-known dinosaur in Earth’s history.
Image source: Wikipedia