I’ve been working with a very good group of four college students at Franklin College for about 6 weeks now and really enjoying it. Good to be a very small part of their course of study and give these four a different opportunity than had before been available at the college. They are all progressing well with different methods we are practicing to unlock fossils from their surrounding rock matrix. So far they’ve worked on 21-1/2 million year-old mammal fossils from the White River Formation in western Nebraska, fossilized dinosaur and turtle bits & pieces from the Hell Creek Formation in Montana and 67 million year-old ammonites & other marine fossils from the Fox Hills Formation.
Next comes their signature work for the semester – each student will have one (large) vertebra from the backbone of a hadrosaur (dinosaur) to prepare for display. These vertebrae were excavated in Montana’s Hell Creek Formation during this past summer’s field work. The fossils found in this part of the Hell Creek are determined to be approximately 66 million years-old. And these vertebrae are part of @80 bones recovered so far from a single specimen that I’m working on now in the shop in Martinsville.
I look forward to helping each student as they apply what they’ve been practicing, on a significant dinosaur specimen. Go, Franklin College Grizzlies!