- World’s youngest allosaurus ever found
- Scavenger and pack hunter is considered the “bad boy” of dinosaur movie history
- Newcomer joins T.Rex teenager “Rocky” and pterosaur “Dracula” in Dinosaur Museum Altmühltal
Denkendorf (Bavaria, Germany) Just in time for the summer season, baby allosaurus “Little Al” has arrived at the Dinosaur Museum Altmühltal. The original skeleton of the youngest allosaurus ever found will be on display in the museum’s exhibition hall from June 2. The young dinosaur (age: around two years) is joining the exhibition’s highlights “Rocky” (the world’s only skeleton of a juvenile Tyrannosaurus Rex) and “Dracula” (the largest pterosaur ever found.) These two exhibition pieces have been the museum’s main attractions since the exhibition space opened in 2018.
Allosauruses have long been considered the “bad boys” of dinosaur movie history. Whether in “The Lost World” (1925), “The Valley of Gwangi” (1957) or in the Jurassic Park movie series (starting in 1993): Allosauruses are mostly portrayed as aggressive and dangerous hunters and scavengers. Spoiler alert: Allosauruses also play a big role in the upcoming movie “Jurassic World: A New Age” (coming to movie theaters in Germany on June 9).
“Little Al” is just under three meters long and about 1.25 meters high. The skeleton has been discovered by the Dinosaur Museum co-founder, paleontologist Raimund Albersdörfer, during an excavation in 2011 at well-known Dana Quarry in Wyoming, U.S., and is about 150 million years old. The allosaurus skeleton was found directly next to a 23-meter-long Diplodocus skeleton. “Little Al” will be a special addition to the dinosaur exhibition.
“This allosaurus is another extremely exciting original skeleton,” said Michael Völker, founder of the Dinosaur Museum Altmühltal. “We’ll present this skeleton at visitor eye level, which will be a particularly intense encounter for dinosaur fans. On our 1.5-kilometer-long adventure trail, we’ll meet ‘Little Al’ again: as a lifelike replica, just as the dinosaur really moved in his environment back then.”
The allosauruses habitat was open landscapes such as sparse tree savannahs, ferny plains or floodplains. Herbivores such as diplodocus or brachiosauruses – potential prey for the allosaurus – lived there. This Museum is the only place in the world where you can see the just-two-year-old baby allosaurus. The life expectancy of these dinosaurs was generally 20 to 30 years.
It’s a mystery why “Little Al” died at such a young age. “Little Al’s” owner, paleontologist Raimund Albersdörfer, offers a plausible theory: “The animal was found in a place where a water hole was located 150 million years ago. Large dinosaurs probably tried to reach the water from the steep bank with their long necks. Occasionally, one of these giants would slip,” Albersdörfer continued, “and slide down the steep bank into the water hole and never made it out again. The stench of decay then attracted predatory dinosaurs like “Little Al”. The young allosaurus presumably jumped into the hole and was either attacked by a larger predatory dinosaur, or it was unable to climb up the steep bank and also died in the water.”
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