Canada Family finds 75-million-year-old fossils in Saskatchewan

20:07  09 october  2017
20:07  09 october  2017 Source:   The Weather Network

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Six- year - old Saskatoon girl uncovers trove of 75 million - year - old fossils . Lake Diefenbaker sits within what is known as the Bearpaw Formation, an area that covers northern Montana, southern Saskatchewan and up into central Alberta.

75 million - year - old sediments containing the remains of horned and carnivorous dinosaurs, fish, lizards, and other terrestrial or freshwater animals are exposed near Unity and at Saskatchewan ’s fossil record of the subsequent Tertiary Period (65–2 million years ago) is the best in Canada.

  Family finds 75-million-year-old fossils in Saskatchewan © Provided by The Weather Network

A lakeside trip ended in a major discovery for a family in Saskatchewan: A fossil experts say is 75 million years old.

Jon Ganshorn was exploring part of the shores of Lake Diefenbaker near the family cabin with his daughter, nephews and nieces, with the children directing him to break promising-looking rocks to see what was inside. 

"All of a sudden, one of these big rocks, boom. There was something really different about it," he told The Weather Network. "It was pretty exciting to find a little bit of a jackpot of fossils on the beach there."

He sent pictures to the University of Saskatchewan, and weeks later, was told it was something remarkable: Fragments of the shell of an ammonite, a prehistoric aquatic creature with tentacles like a cuttlefish, along with a spiral shell.

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And the fact that 75 million - year - old fossils hold these kinds of cells means that we may find similar tissues in other not-so-well-preserved bone fragments — a finding that could drastically increase our knowledge of dinosaur biology, behavior, and evolution.

4.4 million - year - old human ancestor is found 1994. Tim White, Berhane Asfaw, and Gen Suwa Announcing these fossils in 1994, the group named them Australopithecus ramidus, putting them in the same genus as the 1. 75 - million - year - old Australopithecus boisei and the 3- million - year - old "Lucy."

75 million years ago, much of western North America was underwater, awash in a sea teeming with prehistoric life like ammonites. Some that died fell to the sea bottom and became submerged in the muck, beyond the reach of scavengers, becoming preserved through the ages.

Ganshorn says what is now Lake Diefenbaker was formed after a dam was built in the 1960s. The new lake's waters lapped at the lake's edges, gradually eroding them and revealing new rocks, including the fossil trove Ganshorn found, along with other pieces that have since been unearthed.

"It almost looked like you could have pulled them out of an aquarium yesterday," he said. "It was incredible how well that boulder was preserved...that one by far was the most detailed, and quite dramatic."

Quite aside from the wonder of the find, Ganshorn sounds happy the children were involved in the discovery.

"The kids are just being kids again. We're going out there, we're exploring our world, the kids are exploring their world, getting away from the devices. It's awesome," he says.



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REGINA - Alex Taylor says her grandfather, whom she affectionately calls poppa, looked so cute wearing his Saskatchewan Roughriders gear that she had to take his picture. That's when he asked if the photo would go viral — not really knowing what that meant. "I didn't know it at the time, but he was just talking about viral in the literal definition, like, 'Do you think it'll spread?' He didn't realize that viral is a pop culture term now with the internet," Taylor said Tuesday."He had no idea, and I thought he knew exactly what it meant because he knows what Twitter is." © Provided by thecanadianpress.

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