New dinosaur bones have been uncovered by a paleontologist digging at an undisclosed location in Missouri.
The St. Louis-based news station KTVI was first to speak with paleontologist Guy Darrough about his find. Darrough said during an interview with the station that he uncovered the juvenile skeleton of a Parrosaurus missouriensis, a dinosaur species described as duck-bill that grew to be 25 to 30 feet in length.
“I can’t imagine anything that’s more impressive than what we’ve discovered here,” Darrough told the station. He described the find as a “world-famous discovery.”
This particular kind of dinosaur has only been found in Missouri, according to Darrough. It is listed on state government websites as the official dinosaur of Missouri.
Dinosaur bones have been found in Missouri before, but these kinds of fossil finds are rare, according to state records. One set of bones was discovered on a farm in the 1940s while the family that owned the property was digging a well, according to the official website of Missouri’s secretary of state, John Ashcroft. Those bones were later identified as belonging to a Parrosaurus missouriensis, which underwent a few name changes along the way, and eventually became the state’s official dinosaur in 2004.
Those first bones were sold to the Smithsonian in 1943, Ashcroft’s office website said. The Smithsonian’s record of the fossils identified them as being found in Missouri’s Bollinger County.
The location of Darrough’s find is being kept under wraps as dig teams continue searching the area, he told KTVI. After Darrough found the juvenile skeleton, he said he contacted the Sainte Genevieve Museum Learning Center in Ste. Genevieve to alert them of his find and also reached out to Peter Makovicky, the associate curator of paleontology and chair at the Field Museum’s Department of Geology in Chicago.
Darrough told KTVI that Makovicky brought a dig team to the area where the juvenile skeleton was found and unearthed bones belonging to an adult of the same species. Darrough said a Tyrannosaurus tooth has also been uncovered and said researchers are “hoping there’s a whole bunch” of other fossils to be found in the area.