We love DinoLand USA in Walt Disney World’s Animal Kingdom! One of the most fascinating attractions in DinoLand USA is Dino-Sue – she has quite a history, and most of it isn’t known by the average guest to Animal Kingdom. Here are some cool things that most people don’t know about Dino-Sue.
8. What’s in a Name?
Dino-Sue is a replica of the original T-Rex skeleton named Sue, currently a star attraction at the Field Museum in Chicago. Both the original skeleton and Walt Disney World’s replica at DinoLand USA in Animal Kingdom are named after a paleontologist named Sue Hendrickson, who found the skeleton in 1990 at the Cheyenne River Indian Reservation in western South Dakota.
7. Famous Fossil
Most guests who walk past Dino-Sue probably have no idea that she represents one of the most important fossil finds of the last 100 years. When the original skeleton was discovered, over 90% of its bones were accounted for, which is unheard of for dinosaurs. This makes it the most complete skeleton of this species ever found! Sue’s skeleton has shed an enormous amount of light on this species, about which little had previously been known.
6. No Line
Dino-Sue never has a line. And this can be a relief after standing in line for attractions all day! Guests are welcome to visit for as long as they want. This makes Dino-Sue a great option for a mid-day break, or if you’re waiting for your next FastPass+.
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Located in Walt Disney World’s DinoLand USA, Dino-Sue enjoys a plum location just before the entrance to Dinosaur, where you can hop on a time vehicle and travel back to prehistoric times. We love DinoLand USA, which uses both a whimsical and educational approach to paleontology – there’s something for everyone. So if there’s a dinosaur lover in your party, head here for dino-themed merchandise, attractions, play areas, and even food!
4. Photo Opps
Head to Dino-Sue if you’re looking for some unique and fun photo opportunities! She also enjoys close proximity to other dinosaur statues, many of which you can climb on and pose with, for some excellent selfies. So make sure you take some time to wander along the paths around Dino-Sue – amid the primitive-looking plants, who knows what discoveries you’ll make?
3. Record-Breaking Stats
The original Sue lived during the Late Cretaceous Period, in the Mesozoic Era. She weighed several tons, and her skeleton (and the replica at Animal Kingdom) is a whopping 40 feet long, and 13 feet tall. This makes her the largest Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton ever discovered!
2. Pricy Paleontology
Walt Disney World’s connection to Sue goes beyond her replica in DinoLand USA in Animal Kingdom. Back in 1997, when the original Sue skeleton was up for auction, Walt Disney Parks & Resorts (along with other companies and individual donors) contributed financially so that the Field Museum in Chicago could purchase the invaluable skeleton. The price paid? $8,362,500, the highest amount ever paid for a dinosaur fossil!
1. Behind the Scenes
Much of the bone preparation for Dino-Sue was actually done on site at Animal Kingdom. Molds were made of each of Sue’s bones, and replica bones made with them – and guests at Walt Disney World were able to view the process through large glass windows in the fossil preparation lab. A team from the Field Museum in Chicago assisted with this bone work on public display. We can’t imagine a more exciting time to visit DinoLand USA!