News of the well-preserved skeleton of the Edmontosaurus “Dakota” have been featured prominently in the news lately, but according to an announcement made this weekend, another exquisitely-preserved hadrosaur is going to be put on public display this coming September. “Leonardo,” a beautifully-preserved Brachylophosaurus, will be presented to the public starting September 19, 2008 in the exhibit “Dinosaur Mummy CSI: Cretaceous Science Investigation” at the Houston Museum of Natural Science. Eventually the exhibit will tour the country, but if you want to see Leonardo “in the flesh,” you’ll have to go to Houston; the traveling show will wisely only feature a replica.
So far, the only published literature about Leonardo appeared in the technical book Horns and Beaks. I assume that those of us suffering from paleo nerd syndrome will soon see some more published material, though, and I can’t wait to see how Leonardo will change what we understand about dinosaurs (from what I’ve been told, we can expect some papers out about Dakota this year, as well).
This weekend I had the opportunity to ask Robert Bakker, curator of paleontology at the HMNS and one of the paleontologists working on Leonardo, how this hadrosaur mummy is going to change our understanding of dinosaurs. For the answers, though, you’ll have to check back later next week when I publish the fully e-mail interview with the famous paleontologist.
[Images courtesy the Houston Museum of Natural Science]