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EVENT: ANZA BORREGO PALEONTOLOGY--FREE!

Posted by Adventure 16 | 03.10.2016

ANZA BORREGO PALEONTOLOGY: How the Local Geology & Fossils are Related

 

When most visitors think of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, they usually envision wildflowers, bighorn sheep, or vast arid landscapes framed by rugged mountains. Few realize that the eroded badlands of Anza-Borrego provide a contrasting view, a window into the region's vanished past. The Park was not always the arid desert we experience today.

 


The key to understanding this prehistoric scene is paleontology, the study of the fossilized remains of ancient life. And, Anza-Borrego has an exceptional fossil record. Over 500 different types of organisms have been identified, ranging from microscopic plant pollen and spores to the largest of mammoth elephants. Not only are the bones and teeth of long extinct animals preserved, but in some places, also their tracks.



Anza-Borrego Desert State Park® boasts an internationally significant collection of fossils from an unusual sequence of geologic events, unique to North America, and similar to only two or three other places on earth.

 

Paleontologist Lyndon Murray will guide you through the types of fossilized plant and animal life in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, and how those fossils came to be here. Due to the uniqueness of the area, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park contains a fossil record that includes everything from giant tortoises, camels, mammoths, and flamingoes to freshwater clams, pond turtles, and terror birds. This fossil record shows itself in many ways including fossilized trackways, oyster shell reefs and much more.

 


Part of the Anza-Borrego Paleontology Society’s duties include cataloging and naming each specimen brought into the lab, creating photogrammetry images of field specimens, and separating the changes in paleontological plant and animal species due to the changing topography versus global and regional weather pattern changes.

ANZA BORREGO PALEONTOLOGY: How the Local Geology & Fossils are Related
HAPPY HALF-HOUR: 6:30 pm; PRESENTATION: 7pm

Thursday, March 24: A16 San Diego Store

 


ABOUT THE PRESENTER

Dr. Lyndon Murray is the District Paleontologist for the Colorado Desert District of California State Parks and is the only paleontologist in the entire California State Parks system. He is a 1975 graduate of the University of California at San Diego, Revelle College with a double BA in Philosophy and Applied Mechanics & Engineering Science.

In 1992, he earned a MS in Quaternary Studies from Northern Arizona University. Dr. Murray then worked as collection manager of vertebrate paleontology at NAU, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, San Bernardino County Museum, and as an archaeology faunal analyst and field surveyor. In 2008, he graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a PhD in Geology. He went on to work at the Yale Peabody Museum and the Vertebrate Paleontology Laboratory at UT Austin before returning to Anza-Borrego Desert State Park in 2011.

 


REMAINING PRESENTATIONS IN THIS SERIES:
HAPPY HALF-HOUR: 6:30 pm; PRESENTATION: 7pm
ANZA BORREGO PART 5: Paleontology
Thursday, March 24--A16 San Diego Store

ANZA BORREGO PART 6: Citizen Science & Desert Bighorn Sheep
Thursday, April 7--A16 San Diego Store