I'm a museum educator with an eye for paleontology, science history, animals and the occasional bit of pop culture nonsense. My long-winded blog is here.
Taxon: Triceratops horridus
Specimen Number: BHI 6220
Year Created: 2012
Dimensions: 25 feet long
In 2002, a Black Hills Institute team retrieved the Triceratops known as “Lane” from private land near Lusk, Wyoming – the same area where Charles Sternberg found the classic “mummified” Edmontosaurus in 1908. Like the Edmontosaurus, Lane was found with fossilized impressions of skin and other integument covering large portions of its body. Surprisingly, this specimen revealed that Triceratops was almost certainly adorned with sizable quills or spines, which were spread evenly across its back and haunches.
The Houston Museum of Natural Science purchased the Lane skeleton and integument impressions, both of which have been on display in the museum’s enormous (30,000 square feet!) Hall of Paleontology since 2012. Exhibit curator Robert Bakker specifically instructed the BHI team to mount Lane in an energetic trotting pose. With two feet off the ground and its forelimbs held erect and under its body, the Lane mount exudes speed and strength - and is a far cry from the sprawling AMNH Triceratops. At 85% complete, Lane is the single most intact Triceratops found to date. Nevertheless, a full description of the specimen and its skin impressions has not yet been published.
Thanks to all you awesome people, it looks like I passed 300 followers recently! Here’s a random museum dinosaur from my hard drive:
That’s “Gorgeous George” the Daspletosaurus in the lobby of the Field Museum circa 1960, in a spot now occupied by Sue the T. rex. While I’m at it, here’s George in his new digs upstairs and Sue holding court in the lobby.