It may be hard to imagine towering Tyrannosaurus rex as tiny, but the toothy Cretaceous giant didn’t spring from an egg fully grown. In fact, T. rex hatchlings were about the size of very skinny turkeys, with “arms” that were longer in proportion to their tiny bodies than in adults. And each baby T. rex was covered in a coat of downy feathers.
What’s more, T. rex‘s feathers likely grew along the animal’s head and tail into adulthood, according to new reconstructions that represent the most accurate models of the dinosaur to date.
These and many more T. rex surprises abound in T. rex: The Ultimate Predator, a new exhibit opening March 11 at the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) in New York City. While T. rex is one of the most iconic dinosaurs, the exhibition presents new discoveries that are transforming scientists’ understanding of this colossal carnivore and its tyrannosaur cousins, all of which likely had feathers, too.