Exploring A Real Jurassic Park

Exploring A Real Jurassic Park
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  • Item #: 881

From the Dawn of the Age of Dinosaurs in the Connecticut Valley

Geological Society of Connecticut Fieldtrip Guidebook No. 9

Spring Fieldtrip - Saturday, April 8, 2017

2016 marked half a century since the dinosaur tracks were discovered at what is now Dinosaur State Park in Rocky Hill, Connecticut. In order to commemorate this milestone fiftieth anniversary, the Geological Society of Connecticut held its annual meeting at the Park and invited world-famous dinosaur paleontologist Robert Bakker to give the keynote address. Dr. Bakker chose to discuss the regional paleontology of Connecticut and Massachusetts in his lecture, which he entitled "The Real Jurassic Park in the Connecticut Valley." Given both the historical and scientific importance of fossils in this region to our understanding of life in the Early Mesozoic, as well as the location of the talk, Dr. Bakker's topic was very appropriate.

The intent of this fieldtrip is to provide a unique experience examining the fossils of the Connecticut Valley, the deposits of which formed in the Late Triassic and Early Jurassic. The topics covered on this fieldtrip are wide-ranging and therefore there will be something of interest to almost anyone. For example, for those interested in dinosaur evolution, you will examine evidence for feathered dinosaurs as recorded in trace fossils. For those who are interested in paleoecology, you will explore the evidence that Early Jurassic dinosaur communities in this region were based on fish as a primary food source, rather than terrestrial herbivores. For those interested in dinosaur behavior and social dynamics, you will examine the trackways of large bipedal dinosaurs at two tracksites to evaluate whether or not the animals that made the tracks were gregarious. For those interested in sedimentology and dinosaur locomotion, you will examine tracks made in deep, soupy sedimentary substrates that have been difficult to interpret. For those interested in technology, you will visit Dinosaur State Park to learn about new techniques being used to remap the site and to provide a new generation of interpretive exhibits to museum goers.


  • ISBN: 9780942081305
  • Publisher: Geological Society of Connecticut
  • Publication date: April 8, 2017
  • Pages: 82
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