[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][Subject Index][Author Index]

Denver Museum Has New Triceratops Find

first link has a picture...


Thanks to a curator's bold challenge, a sharp-eyed volunteer and a
generous landowner, the Denver Museum of Nature & Science has its first
skull from a triceratops as old as the Rocky Mountains.

The bulldozer that uncovered the mighty, horned fossil ended up shearing
off half its face and burying it elsewhere on the construction site.
Still, the massive creature probably would have remained sealed in its 68
million- year-old tomb had it not been for the dozer's handiwork.

Kirk Johnson, a paleontology curator, had challenged a gifted dinosaur
sleuth to find a triceratops - Johnson's favorite dinosaur since childhood
- for the facility. Tiny museums in podunk towns had their own. "I often
felt we were missing the boat," he said.

The volunteer, Bruce Young, made good on the commandment Nov. 10.
The newest skull discovery, measuring 7 feet long, blows holes in the
theory that triceratops down south were smaller than northern peers,
Carpenter said.

"That's a whopper of a triceratops skull," said Cathy Forster, a State
University of New York professor who is the world's triceratops expert.

Hulking, 8-foot-long triceratops skulls have been found elsewhere, said
Jack Horner, curator of paleontology at the Museum of the Rockies in
Montana. He placed the Brighton find in the "average" size range for an



Major Dinosaur Discovery:
Triceratops Skull Donated to
the Denver Museum of Nature & Science

DENVER-November 17, 2003-Construction crews working west of Brighton have
uncovered a buried treasure-- half a Triceratops skull that is 67 to 68
million years old. This is the first time such a large portion of a
Triceratops skull has ever been found in the metro area, and it's only the
second skull ever discovered along the Front Range in Colorado. The Lennar
Corporation owns the land where the fossil was found, and has generously
donated it to the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. As a gesture of
appreciation, the Museum will call the skull the Lennar Triceratops.
"Really, it's an icon. For years we've wanted one for display in the
Museum," said Dr. Kirk Johnson, Curator of Paleontology. 
Moving the fossil was no small task. This Triceratops skull is quite
large, measuring about 7-feet long, and weighing roughly 400 pounds. Now
that the Triceratops is at the Museum, scientists have recorded where it
was found, and have begun the process of removing the jacket and the
sediment from the fossil.

Normally, Museum visitors can see this happen in the fossil preparation
lab in the Prehistoric Journey exhibition. But this time, paleontologists
and volunteers will bring their tools to the Central Atrium on the first
floor of the Museum so visitors can have an even closer look at the
process. The Lennar Triceratops will remain on display there through