MOR 555, a Tyrannosaurus rex, was discovered in 1988 by Kathy Wonkle of Angela, Montana and greets you upon arrival.
In 1990, the specimen was excavated by the Museum of the Rockies paleontology crew under the leadership of Curator Jack Horner (retired). It was accessioned into the paleontology collections as MOR 555. Using a mold created directly from the bones, the skeleton was cast in bronze by Research Casting International of Ontario Canada in 2001, becoming the first life-size bronze T. rex in the world.
The cast measures 38 feet in length, stands 15 feet tall, and weighs 10,000 pounds. On October 3, 2001, the skeleton was dedicated to the memory of Dr. Michael P. Malone, 10th President of Montana State University from 1991 to 1999. Big Mike was a gift to Museum of the Rockies from its National Advisory Board and friends.
In 2013, the fossil bones used to make the cast were sent to the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History thanks to a 50-year loan from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. After the mount is completed, it will be installed in the renovated dinosaur hall, and a grand opening will be held in 2019.
We encourage you to take and post photos of Big Mike during your visit. #BigMike