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Skinny the Diplodocus, an authentic fossil that is 90% complete and measures 13m long, will go under the hammer at Aguttes in June with a £2m-plus estimate. The specimen, which is believed to be a new species related to the well-known late Jurassic diplodocus, was discovered in the US in 2012. It bears important and significant impressions of its skin, which has never been discovered on a diplodocus before.

It follows the €1.58m (£1.38m) sale of a theropod, also thought to be a new dinosaur species, that the was the subject of a 30-minute bidding battle at the French auction house last June.

“Buyers look for big impressive aesthetically attractive and well-preserved examples,” says Eric Mickler, special adviser to Aguttes. “It is also a case of supply and demand. There are very few found and so prices grow because there is a strong demand for them. So, if you are looking seriously to buy one, choose the best you can find, the best preserved.”

It remains at the airport until the end of May.