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Re: Australian polar dinosaur tracks (video)



From: Ben Creisler
bh480@scn.org

Here's an article with photos and a video link:
http://esciencecommons.blogspot.com/2011/08/polar-dinosaur-tracks-open-new-t
rail-to.html


===================

Martin, A.J., Rich, T.H., Hall, M., Vickers-Rich, P. & Vazquez-Prokopec, G.
(2011)
A polar dinosaur-track assemblage from the Eumeralla Formation (Albian),
Victoria, Australia. Alcheringa (advance online publication)
DOI:10.1080/03115518.2011.597564
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/03115518.2011.597564

The Eumeralla Formation (Aptian?Albian) of the Otway Group in Victoria,
Australia, has yielded a significant amount of dinosaur skeletal material
since the late 1970s, which, when combined with finds from the Wonthaggi
Formation (Aptian) of the upper Strzelecki Group, constitute the
best-documented polar-dinosaur assemblage in the Southern Hemisphere. In
contrast, dinosaur tracks have barely augmented this body fossil record; up
to now, only one ornithopod track had been documented in any detail from
the Otway Group. In this study, we report a new find of at least 24
dinosaur tracks preserved on two ripple-bedded sandstone blocks of the
Eumeralla Formation, discovered at Milanesia Beach, Victoria. This
dinosaur-track assemblage is the best in terms of numbers and quality found
thus far in formerly polar environments of the Southern Hemisphere. One
block includes the first known dinosaur trackway from the Cretaceous of
Victoria, consisting of three consecutive footprints made by a small
theropod. The assemblage indicates three differently sized theropods, thus
providing new insights on dinosaur diversity and activity not indicated
previously by body fossils in the Eumeralla Formation. Tracks are preserved
in fluvial floodplain deposits and were possibly imprinted on emergent
floodplain surfaces following seasonal flooding during a polar summer. The
abundant tracks at this site suggest more such finds are likely in
floodplain deposits of the Otway Group, although behavioural and
preservational conditions unique to polar environments may have limited
their formation.



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