ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Diggin' For Dinosaurs - Museum Of The Rockies & Royal Tyrrell

Updated on March 30, 2010

In a corner of the hall, a Quetzalcoatlus, a flying, birdlike reptile known as a pterosaur, stands 10 feet tall in a coastal forest of palmettos, horsetails, ginkgoes, and cycads near the ancient shoreline. Its batlike wings are folded at its sides while more of its kind soar overhead, suspended from the ceiling or painted into a mural.

Horner would be the first to tell you that scientific interpretations must be subject to change, and so must museum exhibits that seek to go beyond bones. Look to the right, beyond the Maiasaura scene, for instance, and you'll see two slender, six-foot meat eaters known as Trosdon formosus. One is brooding a nest full of six-inch, potato-shaped eggs; another walks near a nest where eggs are hatching and young Trosdons are piling out to feed on the carcass of a small plant-eating dinosaur that Horner named Orodromeus makelai.

Until 1998, a fiberglass Orodromeus was tending those eggs. That's because within the same patch of badlands that contained the Maiasaura nesting grounds, Horner's crews had found two dozen skeletons of young Orodromeus, but only a few Trosdon remains among a dozen clutches of such eggs. Not until 1996, when a preparator chipped away sediment from bone inside an unhatched egg, did Horner confirm that the embryo was actually a Trosdon.

Beyond the dinosaur hall, sharing a largely empty space with a life-sized robotic rubber Triceratops, is a glass-front "fossil bank" where volunteers are at work cleaning bones and answering questions. Someday Triceratops will give way to a new Cenozoic display. (Much of the museum is devoted to the very recent Holocene, a mammalian saga of gold miners, settlers, and Native Americans.) The museum also boasts a lively, interactive Paleozoic section where you can look at "a day 370 million years ago" when tropical seas sloshed across much of the region. But for those who share Horner's passion for dinosaurs, the action here will always be in the Mesozoic.

Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology, Alberta

Dinosaurs are all over the town of Drumheller, Alberta. The capital of this empire is the Royal Tyrrell Museum, one of the world's largest and most comprehensive fossil collections, set about ten minutes northwest of town on a highway called the Dinosaur Trail. Canada's crown jewel of palaeontology is housed in a large, modern, glass-and-granite structure surrounded by the eroded sandstone hills that provide it with most of its fossils. Even as the museum was being built in 1984, palaeontologists crossing the construction site found the lower jaw of a Trosdon, the first ever discovered.

The exhibits include more than 30 complete dinosaur skeletons, a great variety of prehistoric mammals, and about 800 other fossils from various periods during the last 3.5 billion years. It is a spectacular, state-of-the-art display, and about as far from a musty natural-history museum as you can imagine. Your first dinosaur encounter upon entering the museum and weaving through the throng of children pulling levers and pushing buttons in the hands-on science hall is an exhibit labeled Extreme Theropods.

Continued in: Diggin' For Dinosaurs - Royal Tyrrell Museum

Back To Start

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)