Full-sized animatronic dinosaurs, like this T. rex and Triceratops, are up for auction in early August at Able Auctions in Langley. (Photo from Able Auctions)

Animatronic dinosaurs up for auction in Langley

Dozens of robots, fossils, and other gear will be for sale

Want to build your own backyard Jurassic Park? An auction of dozens of animatronic dinosaurs in Langley could let you bring that prehistoric dream to life.

On Aug. 6, Able Auctions will be selling off more than 50 life-sized animatronic dinosaurs, along with hundreds of fossils, more animatronic equipment, lighting, and speakers.

“We’ve had more response to this in the last week… than we’ve had to any auction before,” said Jeremy Dodd, who specializes in large inventories and business closures for Able.

The animatronic dinosaurs include famous species such as Tyrannosaurus rex, Triceratops, and velociraptors, but also more obscure species, such as ouranosaurus, kentrosaurus, dilophosaurus, amargasaurus and a flying pterosaur, which was related to dinosaurs but part of a different lineage.

The fossils displayed on the Able Auctions website include prehistoric eggs, extinct trilobites, and fossilized leaves, among other items.

The unique auction resulted in the bankruptcy of the Canadian subsidiary of a firm that organized large animatronic displays, said Dodd.

The company had a number of displays, including dinosaurs and insects, and would ship them around North America and beyond for shows.

In many ways, a post-bankruptcy auction of large items isn’t that strange for Able, Dodd said. They sell off kitchen equipment, large trucks, and other items all the time.

“Surplus fleet or surplus dinosaurs,” Dodd said it’s similar logistically.

Moving the dinosaurs – including a 72-foot-long Brontosaurus – was relatively easy, Dodd said. It’s the reassembling that will be a challenge. Able staff are starting on that project next week.

A display of all the items is scheduled for Wednesday, Aug. 5 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., with masks mandatory, at Able Auctions Langley location at 19757 92A Ave.

There’s no minimum bid on any item, so theoretically, if no one else wants an animatronic T. rex, you could walk off with it for as low as $1.

However, there has been quite a bit of interest from across Western Canada, noted Dodd.

Museums, folks who want a dinosaur in their backyard, and businesses near Drumheller, Alberta – where Canada’s prime fossil-hunting region is located – have all contacted Able Auctions.

The auction will take place on Thursday, Aug. 6 and will be online only, starting from 9:30 a.m.

Able Auctions’ website notes that buyers are responsible for transportation of anything they buy, including a life-sized T. rex.

The designs appear similar to those created by a Chinese company called Gengu Longteng Science and Technology. The company is among the largest among more than two dozen companies in Sichuan, China that turn out animatronic or statuary dinosaurs for the Chinese and world market.

Able Auctions has several locations in the Lower Mainland, and handles auctions of everything from industrial equipment to comic book and memorabilia collections to unclaimed stolen bicycles seized by police.

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