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New Page--Dinosaur-Age Fossil Leaves In California


New member
Not long ago, I uploaded my latest fossils-related page: Dinosaur-Age Fossil Leaves At Del Puerto Canyon, California ( ). It's a field trip--with detailed text, on-site images, and photographs of fossil specimens--to a fossil leaf locality in the upper Cretaceous portion of the upper Cretaceous to Paleocene Moreno Formation near the western edge of California's Great Central Valley.

Of course, the world-famous Moreno Formation produces California's recently established State Dinosaur (formally recognized in September, 2017), a hadrosaur duckbill herbivore called Augustynolophus morrisi. The Moreno also contains mosasaurs and plesiosaurs (marine reptiles), plus beaucoup ammonites, gastropods, and pelecypods.

A fascinating paleontological side-story here is that sophisticated high resolution stratigraphic sampling of Moreno Formation foraminfera (tiny shells secreted by a microscopic single-celled organism)--exquisitely sensitive time indicators that lived and died during specific, restricted moments in geologic time--proves that during deposition of the Moreno Formation, the hadrosaur dinosaurs went extinct a full 1.23 million years before the infamous meteorite impact of 66 million years ago that many investigators identify as the kill-shot which ended the dinosaurian dynasty on Earth. Too, that same microfossil foraminifer study demonstrated that the Moreno mosasaurs went belly-up, extinct, 158,000 years prior to that K-T boundary bolide collision with Earth--an event which created the infamous Chicxulub crater beneath the present-day Yucatan Peninsula.

Champ Ferguson

New member
Great job, as always. You do field trip reports as they Should be done.