2005 Update: New Discoveries and a New Home for the Monument's Duckbill Dinosaur


Join Us in a Dinosaur Excavation

We are in the remote and beautiful Kaiparowits Plateau of southern Utah, part of the spectacular Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. Look around and see for yourself the rare beauty of this place!

Photo of Fifty-Mile Mountain
Photo of Mud Springs areaPhoto of Grosvenor ArchClick on picture for larger image. Photos by Jerry Sintz, BLM .
Fifty-Mile MountainMud Springs Area
Grosvenor Arch
 

In early May 2001, paleontologists from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the Museum of Northern Arizona excavated parts of a duck-billed dinosaur from sandstone in the “four mile bench” section of the Plateau. In order to protect the sensitive area, only a few people are allowed to enter the area at any one time, and they have to hike in because no cars or trucks are allowed. In addition, this area is far away from any major city. But in spite of this, our education and camera crew traveled here to SHARE THE ADVENTURE with you and your friends. So check in often to see what's happening. (Click “Journal” to see the latest progress reports.) The excavation continued through the month of June. This summer, scientists are at the museum for additional study. In October, we had a live broadcast of the project, featuring video of the work to date.

Museum of Northern Arizona paleontologist Barry Albright
Barry Albright, paleontologist with the Museum of Northern Arizona, at the dinosaur site May 1, 2001.
ASKING QUESTIONS Paleontologists learn by asking a lot of questions. In this excavation, they will be asking such questions as, "How much of the animal is preserved here? How did it die? How old is it? How old was it when it died? Its a hadrosaur—also called a duck-billed dinosaur, but what species of hadrosaur is it? Why did it die? What did it eat? Did it migrate?" Some questions will be answered during the excavation, but most will be answered back in the lab when the bones are carefully studied. Some questions may not be answered.