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H-U-G-E Dinosaur Find Spotlighted At Franklin Institute

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(Ken Lacovara, right, and a colleague wrestle the huge dinosaur bone cast into position at the Franklin Institute.  Credit: Pat Loeb)

(Ken Lacovara, right, and a colleague wrestle the huge dinosaur bone cast into position at the Franklin Institute. Credit: Pat Loeb)

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By Pat Loeb

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A Drexel University paleontologist today put a piece of his prized discovery on display at the Franklin Institute — the cast of a bone from the second largest dinosaur ever found.

“I gave it the name Paralititan, which means ‘tidal giant,’ ” says Ken Lacovara, who led an expedition to Egypt in 2000 that uncovered the partial skeleton of the never-before-seen species of dinosaur, a massive thing that he estimates was 2½ stories tall and weighed 80 tons.

“This is the first time anywhere in the world outside of Egypt that any part of this dinosaur has been displayed in public,” Lacovara said today.

The piece on exhibit at the Franklin Institute is an arm bone that gives a sense of the power the giant reptile must have projected, though Lacovara says it was a plant eater.

The museum’s “Dino Don” Lessem says that’s true of all the big dinosaurs.

“They’re ten times bigger than T. Rex,” Lessem tells KYW Newsradio, “and we’ll never see the likes of them again.  Why did they get so big?  It has something to do with having little heads.”

Those little heads allowed them to develop long necks, so they could eat a lot without moving.  Too bad they died out 95 million years before the Super Bowl was invented.

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