April 14, 2000 the Oklahoma Legislature declared Saurophaganax Maximus to be the State Fossil of Oklahoma. This spectacular dinosaur, the “greatest king of reptile eaters”, once roamed this great land. It is only known from Oklahoma and has surpassed the “king of the dinosaurs”, Tyrannosaurus Rex , as the greatest predator of earth’s history.Skeletal remains of this dinosaur were first found by University of Oklahoma fossil hunters in Cimarron County. In 1931 and 1932 paleontologist John Willis Stovall uncovered remains of a large theropod near Kenton in Cimarron County, Oklahoma in layers of the late Kimmeridgian (late Jurassic). It is still debated whether Saurophaganax Maximus is a member of the Allosaurus family. At nearly 50’ long, 17’ tall and estimated weight of 6 – 8 tons, this Jurassic giant lived 150 million years ago. A skeletal reconstruction of Saurophaganax Maximus can be viewed at the Sam Noble Museum of Natural History in Norman, Oklahoma.
The Oklahoma State Fossil
August 20, 2012 by