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summer field work progress 08



Dinosaur List Members,

Been a busy paleontological field season here on the Bliss Ranch. With the HUGE rains this year giving us a late start, Hell Creek/Lance has been good this field with our Triceratops site being worked with several new large bones being exhumed from the muddy bentonitic lake sediments they were entombed within. We are still cleaning (and will be for years) the large plastered blocks of bones we removed last year and now are adding more to our winter work load. Fortunately, new local volunteers have magically appeared in my crew so there is hope. I just removed another 5 foot long rib a few weeks ago in beautiful condition which bring to 12 the number of different ribs we have recovered in various states of preservation. This Triceratops (now named Doug) seems pretty complete and at least partially articulated. I even found the largest croc molar that I have found in the sediments surrounding the tric skeleton. Go figure, well fed crocs.

I have opened several new microsites and improved several old ones with heavy equipment removal of overburden for future fun in the sun. More than a few rare Cretaceous mammal teeth have been found, thousands of common Upper Cretaceous fossils, many common dinosaurian teeth, some rare ones and even a couple of quite rare troodon teeth came out under our Dinosaur Bed and Breakfasts guest's sharp eyes. These were the first troodontids that we have collected not first collected by harvester ants. We had more dinosaur hunting guests this summer than we really wanted but fun was had by all. Those guests were responsible for finding several pretty rare fossils that are now housed in the ranch collection by site number. The

We even recovered some large Pleistocene mammal material as a result of the 20 plus professional 4 wheel drive trucks that played at the Bliss Ranch June 10 during the Petersen's 4 Wheel and Off Road Ultimate Adventure. The vehicles loosened some alluvium which washed away enough to expose the Pleistocene Fossils. I suspect more of the fossils are there too but I'll wait a bit to tackle that excavation as it is on a pretty steep waterfall. The trucks really helped me by loosening the collapsed soil which washed away and left the fossils. I wouldn't have found them with out the trucks coming here. Pretty cool and newsworthy. So next year when we have the International Tactical Rifle Championships here (Aug 2009), I hope the shooters are as fossil productive!

My website has been totally reworked in a new format and I think you will find it quite a bit easier to read and maybe even useful. It reads like a book on your screen. I hope you enjoy seeing a long series of pictures of identified (hopefully correctly) Hell Creek Fossils in one place. Please go to www.wyomingdinosaurs.com . If you don't have fast internet you might be out of luck though as this is pretty current webpage technology (takes flash and is big) therefore pretty much state of the art. There are still a few errors and the site continues under construction for a few more months.

The season isn't over yet but a nip is in the air and the days are getting shorter.......

Frank (Rooster) Bliss
MS Biostratigraphy
Weston, Wyoming
www.wyomingdinosaurs.com