DALLAS — The Perot Museum of Nature and Science is celebrating a big milestone this year.
Dr. Tony Fiorillo, chief curator , discovered the Pachyrhinosaurus perotorum while on an excursion in Alaska. Dr. Fiorillo said the bone fragments were scattered throughout 11,000 lbs of rock and ice.
“When these things come in, they’re just basically a gigantic block of rock with bone embedded in it,”Director of paleontology Dr. Ron Tykoski said. “You have no clue what’s in there, so first, you have to get the rock off without destroying the bone. Then, you’ve got to piece it together like a gigantic, three-dimensional jigsaw puzzle.”
The discovery of the “Perot Dinosaur” was named as one of the top 100 stories by Discover Magazine in 2014.
“To find the skull in the first place is pretty spectacular. Then to be able to take that skull and realize that you’re seeing something that no one else has ever seen before, which is what we did because we got to name the animal, that’s pretty spectacular. To open a brand new museum and see this thing go on display is well beyond any childhood dream that I had. Then, to watch the public interact with it, it’s pretty special,” said Dr. Fiorillo.
In an Alaskan excursion in 2016, Dr. Fiorillo and his team discovered footprints from pre-historic animals.
It could take years before the team can determine anything from the finding.