Our PR2 nodosaur has been waiting for his head for a couple of years now. We found skull bones piled up in one area of the quarry. They were broken apart but in one group. The bones consisted mainly of the back or interior end of the skull. One piece of maxilla was found. This contained a tooth from which we were able to sculpt and cast teeth for the reconstruction. We later found the premaxilla about a meter away. Unfortunately, the maxilla was not there so we had to guess at the length of his snout by comparing the size of the bones recovered from the quarry. We also used other skulls from related dinosaurs to determine the length of the snout.
I molded cast all of the skull bones and used the replicas to recreate the skull. This preserved the original bone and by using the replicas I was able to uncrush some of the bones that had been crushed by natural means in the quarry.
I consulted with Ken Carpenter from Denver, one of the foremost experts on armored dinosaurs and he advised me to shorten the snout a little more and that’s what I have been doing this week. We recovered only part of the lower jaw and that will be my project in the next couple weeks, to complete the skull.
It seems that it is quite tricky business creating monsters!
Original tooth in maxilla
Hand full of replicated teeth
Starting the skull
Working the clay