“Sweetie” the Mosasaur Makes Her Debut Appearance

Photograph of “Sweetie” the Mosasaur fossil laid out to near her full length.


In February of 2018, paleontologists Dr. Takehito Ikejiri and Dr. Lynn Harrell delved into UA’s Natural History Collection to retrieve “Sweetie”, a Mosasaurus maximus fossil specimen. As explained in a Youtube video by Kendra Abbott, ecologist and nature lover, Dr. Ikejiri and Dr. Harrell were removing Sweetie from the collection to lay out her bones so they could be properly measured and put together. Kendra tells the viewers that Sweetie could be one of the most complete Mosasaurus maximus specimens, and likely one of the largest.

An interview with Dr. Harry “Bing” Blewitt, a paleontology volunteer in the Natural History Collection, tells us how Sweetie got her name: “On one of the trips to the site where she was found…one of the U of A people notice just a little dog that the owner kept calling ‘Sweetie'”. Dr. Ikejiri explains in the video how to tell the first and second neck vertebrae apart, and Dr. Harrell describes how he discovered Mosasaurs were warm-blooded.