The world’s largest T. rex, held in Regina, may have relatives 70 percent larger

Saskatchewan has been the proud home of the world’s largest Tyrannosaurus rex for many years.

Nicknamed Scotty, this once-great animal roamed the Earth some 66 million years ago. Weighing in at an estimated 19,555 pounds, the equivalent of four pickup trucks, and nearly 40 feet long.

Scotty took more than two decades to fully excavate and analyze and was declared the largest member of its genus ever found, as well as the longest-lived T. rex, according to the fossil record.

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However, a new study suggests that Scotty may not hold onto those titles for much longer.

Paleontologists at the Canadian Museum of Nature in Ottawa have estimated that the largest T. rex weighed about 33,000 pounds, making it heavier than an average school bus, which weighs about 24,000 pounds.

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Researchers tried to answer the question: How big can a Tyrannosaurus rex actually get?

Click to play video: 'Scientists study world's largest T. rex to gain insight into dinosaurs and evolution'

Scientists are studying the world’s largest T. rex to gain insight into dinosaurs and evolution

Scientists first examined the fossil record, which shows that about 2.5 billion T. rexes once roamed the Earth. However, only 32 mature fossils have ever been found, leaving scientists with a limited amount of data to examine.

Co-authors David Hone and Jordan Mallon created two models of what different T. rexes body types might look like based on sexual dimorphism.

Using this data, the scientists were able to model T. rex’s growth curve throughout its life — and estimate how big an adult might have gotten.

If this proves to be true in the future, this will make Scotty about 70 percent smaller than what could be the largest of its kind.

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The scientists presented their findings Nov. 5 at the annual conference of the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology in Toronto.

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For those at the Royal Saskatchewan Museum, where Scotty calls home, the research is interesting, but for now it maintains the title of the largest T. rex ever discovered.

“It’s one of those weird situations where it’s not really based on a specimen,” said Ryan McKellar, curator of paleontology at the Royal Saskatchewan Museum. “It’s more of a hypothetical idea.

“There was a conference a few weeks ago where people suggested that if a T. rex kept growing and growing, they could potentially reach sizes bigger than Scotty. But at this point, Scotty is still the largest known specimen. So it is more of a difference between the hypothetical growth curve and what we actually have for fossil material.”

And while Scotty is the biggest for now, McKellar is excited about the future and what might be discovered.

“Part of what makes the hunt for additional specimens down the road more exciting is that there could be larger, better-preserved material in Saskatchewan and in the northern United States,” he said.

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Click to play video: 'New dinosaur species similar to T-rex discovered, but 20 million years older'

New dinosaur species similar to T-rex discovered, but 20 million years older

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