It’s a Tyranno-score.
Next month, Christie’s is auctioning off one of the most complete and largest Tyrannosaurus rex skeletons ever discovered — a 40-foot-long monster named Stan.
“It’s just terrifying to behold,” said Christie’s representative James Hyslop about the titanic T. rex, which roamed Earth 67 million years ago. Now, Stan is on display at the auction house’s flagship in New York City, where he’s projected to fetch between $6 million and $8 million when bidding kicks off on Oct. 6, reported CNN.
The price may seem rex-pensive, but buyers would be getting a lot of fang for their buck. At about 13 feet tall with 11-inch serrated teeth, Stan is among the largest Tyrannosaurus rex specimens ever found. Paleontologists estimate that titanic tyrant lizard weighed 7 to 8 tons when he was alive — about twice the size of an African elephant.
Not only that, but Stan’s supersize skeleton is composed of 188 out of a possible 300 bones, making him the most complete specimen to go to auction since a T. rex fossil named Sue was sold to Chicago’s Field Museum in 1997.
The colossal carnivore has been a fixture in paleontological circles after his bones were first discovered in South Dakota in the Hell Creek Formation in 1987. They were excavated by Stan Sacrison, the researcher whom Stan is named after.
Despite his imposing figure, scientists initially thought the remains belonged to a triceratops and left them untouched until visiting paleontologists discovered their true identity in 1992.
Those researchers “realized pretty quickly” that they’d stumbled onto a paleontological gold mine, Hyslop told NBC News.
After 30,000 grueling hours, the team finally exhumed and restored the skeleton.
Subsequent examinations have revealed that the specimen harbors a few battle scars — namely, fused vertebrae from a broken neck and a punctured rib and skull that may have been inflicted by a fellow T. rex.
Nonetheless, Hyslop said Christie’s is proud to “be bringing Stan to auction.” They view the event as an opportunity for a private collector to obtain a specimen that would usually be owned by museums and private institutions.
Best of all, those not blessed with Jurassic assets can still view Stan in all his skeletal glory until Oct. 21 at the auction house’s Rockefeller Center location.
“We’ve got the skull displayed at ground level so that you can get really up close and personal with him,” said Hyslop.