The World’s Largest Predatory Dinosaur Just Debuted at the Chicago Field Museum

You may remember it from ‘Jurassic Park 3.’

The Spinosaurus at the Field Museum
The Spinosaurus at the Field Museum | Photo by Kate Golembiewski, courtesy of Field Museum
The Spinosaurus at the Field Museum | Photo by Kate Golembiewski, courtesy of Field Museum

The world’s largest predatory dinosaur, the awe-inspiring Spinosaurus, is here in Chicago, having been lifted into its new home at the Field Museum on June 2. And it's the perfect reason to revisit the Field Museum.

The Spinosaurus could weigh as much as 8.4 metric tons, reach as long as 46 feet from snout-to-tail, and its namesake spines helped to make it 18 feet tall, even when on all fours or swimming. A semi-aquatic predator, the Spinosaurus roamed the rivers and shores of northern Africa 95 million years ago during the late Cretaceous period. Though they were primarily opportunistic hunters (kind of like modern grizzly bears who just vibe by the river and wait for salmon to jump into their mouths), fossil records indicate that they occasionally plucked pterosaurs out of the sky for a snack as well—so if you’re planning to time travel to 95 million years ago, you won’t be safe on land, sea, or air.

Spinosaurus
Photo by Michelle Kuo, courtesy of the Field Museum

To celebrate this fearsome predator and antagonist of 2001’s critically panned Jurassic Park III, the Field Museum is hosting Dino Fest on Saturday, June 10, a celebration of all things prehistoric including dino trivia, a book fair, and a poetry station. The highlight of the event will be presentations from the museum’s dinosaur curator Jingmai O’Connor (who also helped author a 2022 study on the Spinosaurus, so you know they know their stuff) and paleoartist Ted Rechlin.

According to the museum, they’re prepared to answer the question of whether a T. Rex or a Spinosaurus would win in a fight, but you’ll have to make the trip to the Field Museum yourself to find out the answer.

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Sam Greszes is a contributor for Thrillist.