Bad Lands EarthCache
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Dinosaur Provincial Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that contains one of the worlds richest collections of upper cretaceous dinosaur fossils. During the Upper Cretaceous period 75 million years ago, eastern Alberta was a low coastal plain at the edge of the shallow Bearpaw Sea. The climate was subtropical (similar to Florida today) and the rich wildlife included about 35 species of dinosaur. Several herds of these dinosaurs likely became overcome during flooding events causing large concentrations of dinosaur fossils. When some of these animals died, they lay in river channels and mud flats so their bones were buried in new layers of sand and mud. Over time, a combination of pressure, lack of oxygen and deposition of minerals produced fossils impressions of the bones, teeth and skin of those creatures that once roamed ancient Alberta. Their bones were buried and preserved under layers of sand and mud deposited in the deltas of sluggish rivers which became the present soft sandstone and bentonite clay shale rocks. At the end of the last Ice Age 13,000 years ago, a sheet of glacial ice 600m thick eroded the upper layers of rock, and huge meltwater rivers carved the Red Deer river valley with its badlands of coulees, mesas, hoodoos and buttes, out of the soft rock, exposing this great concentration of fossil-bearing sediments. To log this Earth Cache please email me the answers to the following questions and post a photo you took while at the Dinosaur Provincial Park. 1. What year was the dinosaur park added to the World Heritage list? (Answer on the plaque) 2. What is the altitude difference between where you are standing the the base of the valley? 3. What mineral is responsible for the red colour in the valley before you? 4. The museum has several near complete dinosaur skeletons on display. Email me the name of one of these. Note there's one in the lobby if you don't want to pay to enter the museum. * Also please remember this is a Provincial Park and the collecting of fossils is strictly prohibited.
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