Scientists uncover giant dino tracks in “Australia’s Jurassic Park”

  • One of the footprints cast from the discovery. Image credit: University of Queensland
  • A large dino prints footprint mold. Image credit: University of Queensland
  • A palaeontologist works on a mold of the dino prints. Image credit: University of Queensland
  • A drone's-eye-view of the footprints in the rocky coastline. Image credit: University of Queensland
Date:28 March 2017 Tags:, ,

Scientists working in “Australia’s Jurassic Park” have found more than a thousand dinosaur tracks from almost two dozen species.

By Avery Thompson

A group of palaeontologists studying a region called “Australia’s Jurassic Park” have uncovered dinosaur tracks from nearly two dozen different dinosaur species, including some of the largest dinosaur footprints ever discovered.

The Walmadany region is often called “Australia’s Jurassic Park” for good reason. During the early Cretaceous period, it held some of the highest dinosaur diversity on the planet. Dozens of different dinosaur species once called this region home, and now palaeontologists have the fossils to prove it.

The team of palaeontologists from the University of Queensland and James Cook University spent five years painstakingly documenting over a thousand dinosaur tracks in this region. In the end, they identified 21 different species in this one area: six different giant long-necked sauropods, five predator species, four two-legged herbivores, and six armoured dinosaurs.

Also included in the find is the first evidence of the existence of stegosaurs in Australia, and some of the largest dinosaur footprints ever discovered, measuring up to 5.5 feet long.

This discovery cements the Walmadany region as one of the most diverse dinosaur habitats in the world. It also provides a strong record of the early Cretaceous period on the continent, as the fossils there are older than anywhere else in Australia.


 
Source: University of Queensland via Gizmodo

 

This article was originally written for and published by Popular Mechanics USA.