Trinity, the Tyrannosaurus rex auctioned in Switzerland

Trinity, the Tyrannosaurus rex auctioned in Switzerland

The first Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton to be auctioned in Europe

A skeleton of Tyrannosaurus rex, a species that lived 67 million years ago, will be auctioned on April 18 in Switzerland, a novelty in Europeas the auction house Koller announced on Saturday.

Called “Trinity”, the complete specimen of almost 3.9 meters high and 11.6 meters in length is estimated at between 6.5 and 8.65 million dollarsaccording to the Zurich catalog Koller.

“This is a very low estimate,” warned Koller natural history expert Christian Link.

It will be “the third time in the world and the first time in Europe” that a skeleton of Tirannosaurus rex has been put up for saleaccording to the Koller house, which recalls that most specimens of this type are found in museums.

Koller says the undisputed star of the April 18 auction is the TRX-293 TRINITY T-rex skeleton
Koller says the undisputed star of the April 18 auction is the TRX-293 TRINITY T-rex skeleton

More than half of the skeleton of “Trinity” was assembled using bones of three different T-rex specimens found between 2008 and 2013 in Montana and Wyoming in the northwestern United States, according to the catalog.

Last year the Christie’s t auction houseA few days after the sale in Hong Kong, another T-rex skeleton, also from Montana, had to be removed due to doubts about certain parts of the skeleton.

Only 32 adult T-rex skeletons, among the largest predators to ever live on Earth, have been found in the world so far.according to a study published in 2021 by the scientific journal Nature.

A complete skeleton of Gorgosaurus, a species of T-rex cousin dinosaur that lived more than 77 million years ago, was sold in July by Sotheby’s in New York for $6.1 million.

An illustration of a T. rex feeding (© Mark Witton 2022)
An illustration of a T. rex feeding (© Mark Witton 2022)

In early 2022, a group of researchers made a provocative claim: Tyrannosaurus rex should be split into three different species: the standard T. rex, the bulkier “T. imperator,” and the thinner “T. Regina.” This study, published in the journal Evolutionary Biologywas based on analysis of the leg bones and teeth of 38 T. rex specimens.

But in August of the same year, a group of paleontologists led by the Museum and Carthage College in Wisconsin published a refutation of this “multiple species” thesisbelieving that the proposal is not supported by sufficient evidence. “Tyrannosaurus rex is still the real king of the dinosaurs”said Steve Brusatte, co-author of the study which reviewed the original data and also added measurements of 112 species of birds, which are living dinosaurs, and four non-avian theropod dinosaurs.

The rebuttal authors found that the multiple species argument was based on a limited comparative sample, incomparable measurements, and inadequate statistical techniques.

With information from AFP and EuropaPress

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Melissa Galbraith
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