Cretaceous

Published on May 24th, 2018 | by David Marshall

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Episode 91: Dinosaurs of Appalachia

The Appalachian mountains, span the Eastern margin of the United States of America. They are predominantly composed of Paleozoic rocks, but Mesozoic marine sediments (formed adjacent to the Appalachian continent at the time) can be found along the Eastern coast. It is within these deposits that the remains of a unique dinosaur fauna can be found.

Joining us to paint a picture of the vertebrate faunas of Appalachia during the Mesozoic is Chase Brownstein, research associate at the Stamford Museum and Nature Centre.

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Map of the Appalachian Mountain physiographic regions, highlighting the Great Appalachian Valley, naming the main valleys making it up and the main mountains on either side. Image credit: Perhelion CC BY-SA 2.5

Teeth from goblin sharks, a common find from Late Cretaceous deposits in New Jersey. Scale bar in inches.

A foot claw (pedal ungual) from an ornithomimosaur, or ostrich dinosaur, that lived in Maryland about 112 million years ago (MYA), and a reconstruction of an ornithomimosaurian dinosaur.

Proximal tibia of a tyrannosaur from the latest Cretaceous (~67 MYA) of New Jersey. This was described in Brownstein (2018)(link: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cretres.2018.01.005.)

Outline of the ~ 18 cm long hand claw of Dryptosaurus aquilunguis, a medium-sized tyrannosaur from the Cretaceous of eastern North America.

Reconstruction of Dryptosaurus by Chase Brownstein.

Chase at Yellowstone National Park.

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