When I saw the first Jurassic Park movie I was impressed with two things: first, I wondered what would happen if they really could extract dinosaur DNA and bring back the dinosaurs. Secondly, I loved the old guy’s cane with the amber ball on top that had the ancient fly stuck in it. The movie was about science gone wrong, meddling where we shouldn’t be meddling, and the disastrous consequences that may happen if we go to far.
The dinosaurs in the movie were kept on an island so in case any of them ever escaped they wouldn’t be launched on an unsuspecting world. The danger was over exaggerated, I think. We’re just too good at extinction. If something like that ever happened, it would just be a field day for the hunters. Or, if the situation really got out of hand, we could just nuke them.
Then I read an article recently where some scientists are actually trying to isolate dinosaur DNA and maybe create a few cells. I thought all I have to do is let the free market take over and it wouldn’t be long before I’d be driving through a real Jurassic Park.
But for those of you who can’t wait for the real thing, then you might want to take a trip down to the St. Louis Science Center and say hello to Sue, the 42- feet-long and 12-feet-high (at the hips) replica of Tyrannosaurs Rex that’s been seen hanging out there.
A woman named Sue Hendrickson found the 90 percent complete skeleton and Chicago’s Field Museum paid a whopping $8.4 million for it. The skeleton is the most complete example of the “terrible lizard” ever found and is therefore worth every penny. (At least to the scientists that study her). The Field museum made a full-sized articulated replica of the T-Rex and it is currently on loan to the science center. (www.slsc.org)
According to Wikipedia, (www.wikipedia.com), Tyrannosaurus Rex lived throughout what is now the western part of North America some three million years ago. It was one of the last non-avian dinosaurs to exist before the great extinction event that wiped them off the face of the planet.
Sue is housed in the Exploradome at the St. Louis Science Center in Forest Park. You can visit her there and then dig for remains in the Dino Dig area. You can also experience the world as the dinosaurs saw it with interactive sensory machines. Admission for this trip back in time is $3-$6. Call 314-289-424 for more information.
And the good thing about Sue compared to Jurassic Park is that Sue doesn’t move nearly as fast.