Mounted T. rex Specimen Fails to Reach Reserve Price at Auction

The Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton put up for sale by a wealthy, private owner has failed to sell in a Las Vegas auction of prehistoric fossils and other ancient artefacts.  The Tyrannosaurus was expected to fetch in excess of 4.5 million dollars (USD) but when the bidding stopped at 3.6 million dollars (USD), the lot was declared a no sale.  The T. rex nick-named Samson (although believed to be female), failed to meet its reserve price and fell well below the record paid for a palaeontological specimen, the Tyrannosaurus rex specimen known as Sue that sold for 8.36 million dollars in an auction at Sotherby’s in 1997.

To read a article about the Vegas auction: Tyrannosaurus rex under the Hammer

Samson, along with seventeen other lots failed to find a buyer in the auction that took place yesterday (Saturday).  The auction house responsible; Bonhams & Butterfields were quick to blame the recession for the lack of interest in many of the exhibits up for sale.

Officials from the auction house pointed out that twenty-five lots did sell, raising an estimated 1.7 million dollars (USD).

Commenting on the lack of success for the T. rex specimen, Patrick Meade, the Chief Operating Officer at Bonhams & Butterfields stated:

“I’m disappointed that we couldn’t find a buyer, but we will, and I’m pretty happy with the results overall”.

Some specimens did exceed their expected sale price, many of these items were purchased by wealthy individuals who will involve some of their purchases in their own charity and community work.  Other items will be put on display in their lavish homes.

Here’s hoping that the T. rex and other specimens are made available to public institutions and academic establishments so the can be viewed and studied.

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