Skull and Bones: T. Rex Fossil Photos

A closer look at one of history's fiercest predators.

style="text-align: left;">This week came the news of a "major" fossil find: A Tyrannosaurus rex from Montana's famous Hell Creek Formation, one with what paleontologists expect will be a fully intact skull (only half the skull is visible now; the other is still encased in rock). Well preserved T. rex skulls are tough to come by, with scarcely more than a dozen curated in the world. On the heels of the new find, we thought it would be fun to take a look at a few more pieces of T. rex, just to appreciate the wonder that this creature must have been.

style="text-align: left;">RELATED: Pregnant T-Rex Might Have DNA

style="text-align: left;">Photo: University of Washington

style="text-align: left;">If you ever wanted to get the full "how fierce was it?" T. rex experience, you could always start with "SUE," probably the most famous collection of dinosaur bones in the world. She's considered the biggest, most complete T. rex skeleton ever discovered. Found in South Dakota in 1990, she gets her name from her discoverer, paleontologist Sue Hendrickson. She lives in Chicago's Field Museum and measures 42 feet long from snout to tail, standing about 13 feet tall at the hip. FYI, that's not her real skull -- it's a replica. Her real noggin, all 600 pounds of it, is displayed in a different exhibit.

style="text-align: left;">RELATED: T. Rex Teens Fought, Disfigured Each Other

style="text-align: left;">Photo: Getty Images/Richard T. Nowitz

style="text-align: left;">If you're thinking this is a T. rex claw, you're thinking right. It's a toe claw, one of three it had per hind limb. They were sharp and well suited to hunting whatever prey the big carnivore wanted to take down.

style="text-align: left;">RELATED: Dinosaur Claws Evolved from Basic to Badass

style="text-align: left;">Photo: Getty Images/Walter Geiersperger

style="text-align: left;">Remember "SUE"? Here are a few of her teeth. Yikes. T. rex teeth were deeply serrated, flesh-tearing weapons that could be up to 1 foot long. The iconic dinosaur had the strongest bite of any terrestrial animal ever known.

style="text-align: left;">RELATED: Just One Animal Today Has Teeth Like T. rex

style="text-align: left;">Photo: Corbis/VCG

style="text-align: left;">More teeth, if you can handle the sight of chompers as big as human hands.

rel="text-align: left;" style="text-align: left;">RELATED: New Tyrannosaur Had More Teeth Than T. Rex

rel="text-align: left;" style="text-align: left;">Photo: Getty Images/Layne Kennedy

style="text-align: left;">Finding a T. rex fossil is all fun and games, until you have to clear away the dirt and rock encasing one without damaging the precious find itself. Here, a high-pressure hose is used to carefully sandblast dirt from a pelvic bone of "Stan" the T. rex, at the Black Hills Institute of Geologic Research. To extract the new skull just found in Montana, paleontologists say it could take up to one year.

style="text-align: left;">RELATED: Did T. Rex Have Lips?

style="text-align: left;">Photo: Getty Images/Layne Kennedy

style="text-align: left;">Just for sheer scale, here's SUE's real head next to the decidedly smaller one of paleontologist Peter Larson, president of South Dakota's Black Hill Institute of Geological Research.

style="text-align: left;">RELATED: T. rex Had a Small, Cute Cousin

rel="text-align: left;" style="text-align: left;">Photo: Getty Image/Layne Kennedy

style="text-align: left;">Here is SUE's gigantic jaw bone.

style="text-align: left;">RELATED: T. rex Could Open Jaw Really Really Wide

style="text-align: left;">Photo: Corbis/VCG

style="text-align: left;">T. rex's tail was long, in order to balance out its enormous, weighty head. The tail could have upwards of 40 vertebrae. Here's a closer look at SUE's tail. Researchers say some of her vertebrae were fused and suggestive of arthritis.

style="text-align: left;">RELATED: Giant Dinosaur Had 2 Tumors on Its Tailbone

style="text-align: left;">Photo: Philip Gould