'Prime' sauropod specimen graces museum

Sunday, June 19, 2011

It's known as the Dana Quarry, though the dinosaurs that roamed it 145 million years ago saw it as a watering hole in the middle of a large grassland savanna.

That was until they became stuck in the mud and died in a heap, one on top of the other. Mired in the bog, they were covered by sediment and hidden by the slow shifting of geology.

Geology would reveal them at place called Ten Sleep, about 10 miles down a dusty road from the town of Worland, population 5,000.

It's here at the Washakie Museum and Cultural Center where one of those dinosaurs, a diplodocus sauropod named Apollo, now stands on display.

Apollo towers above visitors with vertebra as large as car engines and a head the size of a cow — though one has to wonder how smart it was when it lived.

In the business of paleontology, fossils like this don't come cheap. The dinosaur specimen, one of the most complete sauropods ever discovered, was unearthed by Dinosauria International and can be purchased for $2.5 million.

For more information related to dinosaurs, visit rareresource.com.


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