Dig uncovers largest Swiss dinosaur skeleton

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Dig uncovers largest Swiss dinosaur skeleton
Existing display of a plateosaurus at the Frick Dinosaur Museum. Photo: Sauriermuseum Frick

Researchers have found the largest dinosaur skeleton in Switzerland on a site in the canton of Aargau's Frick Valley, known for similar discoveries.


The eight-metre long skeleton is of a Plateosaurus, a plant-eating creature that lived 210 million years ago, University of Zurich paleobiologist Ben Pabst said on Wednesday, according to a report from the SDA news service.

The head is missing from the skeleton that is otherwise intact, said Pabst, who directed the search that uncovered the remains in a clay pit.

The site is in an area about three kilometres in diameter, where other finds have been made and displayed in the Frick Dinosaur Museum.

Pabst said 210 million years ago the area around Frick was a flat, tropical place interspersed with rivers.

He believes that the Plateosaurus, weighing more than a tonne and aged between 20 and 40 years, got stuck in the bottom of a water hole and died of thirst.

Excavations at the Frick site are carried out annually at a cost of 50,000 francs, made possible only through the support of numerous volunteers, SDA reported.

Once bones of a dinosaur are found it takes a year to prepare them for presentation in a museum and donors are being sought to finance this endeavour, the news agency said.

Currently there is no room in the current dinosaur museum to showcase the latest find so officials are thinking about erecting a new building, according to the report.  


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