Daspletosaurus (horneri?) Vertebra with most of its top process intact, and neural canal covering.
Cretaceous - 75 Million Years Ago
Private quarry, Two Medicine Formation, Montana
Specimen size: approximately 4" x 5" x 2"
Height in stand: approx 5"
Custom metal stand included
Daspletosaurus was an apex predator and was one of the largest tyrannosaurs. It got its name because of its apparent ferociousness; its name means "frightful lizard." Daspletosaurus was a carnivorous dinosaur that lived in the Cretaceous Period. It is devolved from (meaning it evolved into) Tyrannosaurus rex and other tyrannosaurids. Similar to other members, it had a powerful jaw and short arms. It had a huge body balanced upon two powerful back legs. The three-toed taloned feet (much like those of a modern bird) probably held the prey down while it ate. Like all tyrannosaurids, the front limbs were short and had only two fingers each. An attack from a Daspletosaurus or its relative Albertosaurus would have been a nasty way to go, due to their brute strength, robust teeth and jaws powerful enough to puncture through bone.
The Two Medicine Formation was deposited in the Late Cretaceous (approximately 75 million years ago) of central Montana, and is known for its relative abundance of dinosaur eggs, nests, and baby dinosaurs — all of which are generally rare in the fossil record.
During the cretaceous, the Two Medicine was an upland environment with a semi-arid climate. It also sat close to the Western Interior Seaway. Volcanoes were also present due to volcanic ash being found.
The Two Medicine Formation was a mountainous-prairie dotted with various volcanoes: at least one of which was active. A small waterhole is known in the upper-elevations, where it seems to be quite rocky. The lowlands are more flat and smooth. Seismic-activity is frequent, and many geysers have been known to burst from the ground in the uplands.
The lower-areas were populated by Maiasaura and Einiosaurus who trekked through during the seasons. Daspletosaurus were also found here, and frequently liked to stalk the two herbivores whenever they're out in the open. The upland-areas were home to Orodromeus and Troodon. Quetzalcoatlus are found here too, making nests on volcanic-cliffs where predators can't touch them.