Settling in to the Second Empire

It’s been almost two weeks since I arrived in Paris – a horrifying thought. I don’t understand how the start of the World Cup, which is in about fifteen days, can seem an eternity away while the 54 days until I leave seem like they could evaporate in a second. To return to what I said about leaving for Paris and how it always seems like you didn’t have time to prepare, I fear that no matter how long I stay here, my trip will come to an end long before I’m ready to leave.

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Microvertebrate Accumulations of WY and MT

Hey everybody!

My name is Sean Moran and I am a rising senior geology major/biology minor at the College. About 2 summers ago I grew interested in particularly diverse vertebrate fossil accumulations commonly found in the Mesozoic Era (~250 to 65 million years ago). These “microsites” as they are commonly called, contain fossils of a large amount of taxa and, therefore, provide a fantastic representation of the paleoecology of the area where the sites were deposited. Fossils ranging from dinosaur teeth, turtle carapace fragments, reptilian teeth and jaws, fish scales, to assorted vertebrae and limb bones are commonly found. Although the deposition of these accumulations has been heavily debated over the past few decades, a study published within the last few months suggested that they are first deposited in lacustrine (lake/stream) environments and commonly reworked by fluvial or river processes. Unfortunately, because these microsites are usually found in rock formations that contain more “interesting” fossil specimens (dinosaur skeletons, early mammals, etc.), the importance of these sites have been largely ignored in the scientific literature.

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