Thursday, November 27, 2008

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Christmas Music

I am cross-posting from my other blog - forgive me for the non-paleo related blog post:

So I know we are less than a week out from Thanksgiving, but everywhere you go people are playing Christmas Music and have their trees, lights and decorations up! So today I got the iPod warmed up for all the "Holiday" music and started to make my playlist. I thought I would list below some of the music that I have (no laughing!) and see if anyone has any recommendations or can think of something I might have forgotten! You can tell what CD's I variations are appreciated.

  • Mr. Grinch
  • Happy Christmas - John Lennon
  • Silver Bells - Johnny Mathis or Bing Crosby
  • White Christmas - Bing Crosby
  • Holly Jolly Christmas - Burl Ives
  • Jingle Bell Rock - Bobby Helms
  • Rocking around the Christmas tree
  • Jingle Bells - Bing Crosby or Frank Sinatra
  • All I want for Christmas is you - Mariah Carey
  • Santa Clause is coming to town - Mariah Carey
  • Ho Ho Ho and a bottle of Rum - Jimmy Buffett
  • Mele Kalikimaka - Jimmy Buffett
  • Please come home for Christmas - Eagles or Mariah Carey
  • I'll be home for Christmas -Bing Crosby or Sheryl Crow
  • There's No Place Like Home for the Holidays - The Carpenters
  • Have yourself a merry little Christmas - The Carpenters or Martina McBride
  • Sleigh Ride - Johnny Mathis
  • Winter Wonderland - Johnny Mathis, Dolly Parton or the Carpenters
  • The Christmas Song (Chestnuts roasting...) - Nat King Cole, Vince Guaraldi, or Sheryl Crow
  • Merry Christmas Baby
  • Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer - Burl Ives
  • Merry Christmas Darling - the Carpenters
  • Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas - The Carpenters or Martina McBride
  • A Christmas to Remember - Dolly Parton
  • Christmas Time is Here - Vince Guaraldi (A Charlie Brown Christmas)
  • Deck the Halls
  • Greensleeves - Vince Guaraldi (A Charlie Brown Christmas)

Church tunes
  • Do you hear what I hear
  • The First Noel - Bing Crosby
  • God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen - Bing Crosby
  • Hark the Herald Angles Sing - Nat King Cole
  • It Came Upon a Midnight Clear - Frank Sinatra
  • Joy to the World - Bing Crosby or Mariah Carey
  • Oh Come all Ye Faithful - Frank Sinatra
  • O Holy Night - Sheryl Crow or Mariah Carey
  • O Little Town of Bethlehem - Frank Sinatra
  • Silent Night - Mariah Carey, Bing Crosby, or Frank Sinatra
  • We Three Kings
  • What Child is This

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Paleo Links

I have updated the "Paleo Links" page on my website. I added the plethora of new blogs (quite a few over the past year!), some new museum links, deleted some links that were broke and fixed those that have changed. I also added a new section - Student Webpages. If you have one you would like for me to add, or know of some, please let me know! I would like to point out one imparticular today - fellow ceratopsian enthusiast John Scannella, a student at Montana State Univirsity. Check out his new webpage.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Spence Gulch Trilobite Trip

John has had trilobites on the brain recently. Seriously.

I realize that I never really wrote about our trilobite collecting trip to Spence Gulch, Idaho, so I thought I would fill you in. We did find the site. As I mentioned before, Spence Gulch is located in southeastern Idaho (see map below) near the town of Liberty, Idaho. We originally found out about the site from the Geo-Tools website. We knew the land is on National Forest Service property, so that was one good thing to find out, as far as invertebrate fossil collecting goes (you do not need a permit as long as you are collection common invertebrate fossils for non-commercial purposes only). Google earth showed us where we wanted to go (also see below), thanks to someone else marking the map. Once we found the right road to turn off of, it was reasonably easy to find.

View Larger Map

The Spence Shale (Lead Bell Shale Member of the Langston Formation) is exposed in a stream cutbank. While we were there the stream was dry. It is easy to see from an aerial photo but is not visible from the road. Once you see it though, you know you are there.
We collected for two days and did pretty well. All of the fossils we collected are now housed in the Museum of Western Colorado's paleontology collections. The trilobites we collected include:
  • Peronopsis sp.
  • Pagetia clytia
  • Zacanthoides idahoensis
  • Zacanthoides serratus
  • Athabaskia bithus
  • Oryctocare geikei
  • Amecephalus idahoensis
  • Achlysopsis sp.
The agnostoid trilobites Peronopsis and Pagetia dominated our finds (over 75% of what we found). The non-agnostoid Zacanthoides idahoensis (picture below right) was the most abundant, followed by Amecephalus idahoensis (picture above right))

Other fossils collected include:
  • Brachiopods -
    Lingulella eucharis, Acrotreta sp., and Wimanella sp.
  • Hyoliths - Hyolithes sp.
  • Echinoderm - Gogia palmeri

Feel free to take a look at my pictures from that trip here.

A big thanks to my husband who identified all of these bugs and did the bulk of the work!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Colossal Fossil: Triceratops Cliff

From the Boston Museum of Science Press Release:

"Triceratops Cliff made international headlines in April 2008 when it was the first Triceratops ever sold on public auction (at Christie’s in Paris) and bought by an anonymous collector for $942,797. A New York Times editorial said that “this fossilized superstar deserves a public audience…” Shortly after the auction, the Museum of Science, Boston received a call from that same anonymous collector who had loved visiting the Museum as a child. Wanting to share this discovery with as many people as possible, the collector offered the fossil on long-term loan to the Museum of Science — Boston's most attended cultural attraction. The Museum, which already had a full-size model Triceratops as well as two full-size models of Tyrannosaurus rex on display, was thrilled to exhibit the real fossilized skeleton of a dinosaur. (see picture here, blogger cant resize it for some reason)

The Museum will unveil Triceratops Cliff (named after the donor’s grandfather) to the world for the first time Saturday, November 15, 2008, in the exhibit Colossal Fossil: Triceratops Cliff. The newly created exhibit will inspire visitors to imagine Cliff’s life and death in the age of the dinosaurs and compare the model with the real thing. Visitors will learn about the Hell Creek Formation and discover why the area is so rich with fossils. Visitors will explore other fossils from the Cretaceous period, such as fish and turtles, learning about florae and faunae that existed in Cliff’s lifetime. Virtual exhibit interactives will allow visitors to zoom in for a closer look at Cliff — right down to the bone, and compare a model to the real fossil. A fossilization animation and a T. rex versus Triceratops comparison station will ask how fossils form and why mostly complete specimens are so rare. (another picture)

Cliff was unearthed in 2004 on private land in the Hell Creek Formation, its bones still embedded in blocks of rock. The bones were removed from their rock matrix by the paleontological company ZOIC and reassembled as a skeleton in their lab in Italy with missing bones cast by model makers. Cliff's skeleton, which took Museum staff seven days to reassemble for display in Boston, appears as a completely articulated (or free standing) skeleton. Its gender is unknown."

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Time Elapsed Dinosaurs

My friend Anthony is sharing this fun video:

"This is the installation of a cast copy of U of Wyoming's Apatosaurus excelsus specimen (Formerly CM 563) at the former Weinman Museum (now Tellus Museum) in Cartersville, GA."

There is also a short video of Tellus Museum's Tyrannosaurus rex being assembled.

These is also a fun short video of the Boston Museum of Science assembling their new Triceratops Cliff:

Oklahoma's Dinosaurs

I will be swinging by the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History to do some work over the Thanksgiving holiday. They have a new Paleozoic Hall that opened this past summer and have a new temporary exhibit, "Hatching the Past," about dinosaur eggs and discoveries that should be interesting to see. The museum also has many great murals by artist Karen Carr, which I always enjoy seeing. I have a copy of her "Jurassic Landscape" that has been hanging in my office for 5 years that I bought when SVP was in Norman back in 2002. It has suffered from the direct light through my windows, so I am looking forward to getting a new copy of that!

Getting in the spirit of all things Oklahoman, there was an article a few weeks ago on the Oklahoma News 9 website about "Oklahoma's Dinosaurs" that one of my aunts sent to me. Since I am from Oklahoma I thought I would share the story.

Oklahoma’s first residents

Posted: Nov 6, 2008 07:48 PM

Updated: Nov 9, 2008 04:57 PM

By Christian Price, INsite Team

"NORMAN, Okla. -- From the highest point of our state, to the woodlands that haven't been explored, dinosaurs can be found in every part of Oklahoma.

Dr. Richard Cifelli, a Paleontologist with The Sam Nobel Oklahoma Museum of Natural History, says Oklahomans don't realize what really lies beneath their feet.

"Oklahoma is fossils from the grass roots down; there are fossils everywhere," Dr. Cifelli said. "It's truly a remarkable state because of the diversity of the kinds of things we have. People get this idea that dinosaurs are only found in really exotic places like Mongolia or Patagonia."

Some of the dinosaur material from Oklahoma is the oldest ever found.

"The oldest material that's from Oklahoma, the oldest vertebrate material, is about 450 million-years-old," Cifelli said. "It's some of the earliest vertebrate material known in the whole world, and it comes from a site in the median of Interstate 35 as you're going over the Arbuckle's."

Our official state dinosaur, the Saurophaganax, is only found in the state panhandle (see painting below).

"We do feature a very large meat eating dinosaur out there," Dr. Cifelli said. "This thing goes by a kind of complicated moniker, Saurophaganax, but it's basically an Allosaurs on steroids. It's a real big bad Allosaurs. It's got three big claws on the hands and big jaws, so a very impressive one. It's only been found for certain in Oklahoma."

Even the animal with the longest neck in the world has been discovered in our red dirt.

"The other really cool thing we got from south eastern Oklahoma is this thing we named Sauroposeidon," Dr. Cifelli said. "It's a long necked dinosaur and it's actually related to the Brachiosaurs, but it's about a third larger. It's got the longest neck of any animal known in the world at 39 feet."

According to Dr. Cifelli, many of the most recent discoveries have all been found in the same area.

"Most of our discoveries through the 1990's and on into this century have been made actually at a state prison property down in south eastern Oklahoma," Dr. Cifelli said.

The person who found the dinosaur bones has a unique tie to the prison as well.

"That material was discovered by a guy who trains the prisons canine unit," Dr Cifelli said. "His job is to basically run these dogs all over the whole property and he's a backwoodsman and he knows bone when he sees it."

Discovery of dinosaur remains still occur in Oklahoma, most of which are found mostly by locals."

[link to story] "Jurassic Landscape" is a copywritten image and was used with permission from Karen Carr to R. Hunt-Foster for this blog post.

Maybe if we have time on our way back from Oklahoma we can stop by the Denver Museum of Nature and Science and see their temporary exhibit, "Dinosaurs: Ancient Finds, New Discoveries."

Monday, November 17, 2008

Who you are :)

I thought I would share the results of my "Who are you" poll. I had 75 individual responses, so thank you to all who took the time to help! Here is how it breaks down:

'Geologists' make up the bulk of my readers at 19%, followed closely by 'Paleo Enthusiast' (16%) and the 'General Public' (15%). 'Artist' and 'Other Student' follow with 10% each. The only group that was not chosen was 'Paleo Post Doc.' It is interesting to see what kind of readers come to Dinochick Blogs! Thanks for your continued support. I will try to gear future post towards these audiences.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Who are you?

I am thinking of doing some new series here on the blog. Things have gotten a bit stale as of recently and I apologize for that. If you would be willing to fill out this poll below and let me know a little bit about your background so I could gear these things towards those of you who are my readers, I would really appreciate it (if the poll below does not work for you, please feel free to use the one to the right). I hate trying to "categorize" people, so please do not get offended by any of the categories. Pick as many as you feel "fit" you (you can make more than one selection). It is all private, I am just curious who out there is reading and what I can do to make that experience better. Please feel free to leave any comments on what you would like to see more of here (what you have likes, what you have disliked, what you want to see, ect...). Thanks for your help!

Thank you for continuing to come by!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

SVP 2008

This year was my 8th time to attend the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology annual meeting. They have all been great meetings, and I love getting to see every one each year and hear about all of the new and exciting research taking place in my field! I take my camera pretty much everywhere I go (in case you might not have noticed), and I love to document the things that happen at these meetings. I have been posting my pictures from SVP every year on my website ( and I have done the same with this years pictures. I wish I could have posted them a bit more quickly than I have, but that is life, and I do the best I can with the time I have. So please feel free to check out the SVP 2008 pictures. I hope you enjoy them and please feel free to pass them on! I am always open to suggestions also, so if you see something you like, or dislike, please feel free to let me know!
If anyone happens to know any of the people in the pictures below can you please let me know (sorry, it is hard to remember everyone's names at these meetings!). Thanks :)

Who is the girl with the fun shirt?

Who are these three nice men?

Who is the lady to the left please?

Who is Bill talking to here?

How Long Could You Survive Chained to a Bunk Bed with a Velociraptor?

I guess I will jump on the bandwagon:

I could survive for 1 minute, 6 seconds chained to a bunk bed with a velociraptor

Created by Bunk

Monday, November 10, 2008

Wild Animals in the Field meme

The other day Brian from Clastic Detritus started this domesticated animals in the field meme, with Silver Fox, Geotripper, Bryan, and Life-long Scholar following. So I thought it would be fun to see what kinds of wild animals folks run into when in the field - so consider this a Wild Animals in the Field meme. Feel free to include any funny/interesting stories!

From Glacier National Park: I never get good shots of bears. I have seen so many, but I never have my camera in hand when I see them usually. Maybe that is why I am still around ;) Bears are so awesome!

This marmot is sitting on a stromatolite. That was pretty cool!

Piceance Basin:

Nebraska Badlands:

Yes, this rabbit is in a tepee. Smart rabbit!

There are many more where those came from, but I figured that was probably good for now. What have you all seen??

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Vote for Brian

Hello everyone! To those of you familiar with the PaleoBlogging world you have probably been to Laelaps ( The owner of that site, Brian Switek, has made it as one of 20 finalists in the 2008 Blogging Scholarship. That means that he has a shot at winning $10,000 to help finish his undergrad degree and pay off his student loans! Many of us have been there and know how much debt you can build up in a short amount of time, so lets give him a hand! The next part of the contest is based on votes rather than content, however, and he needs your help.

Cast your vote here ( ).

Next, if you can, tell your friends or post a link on your blog (if you have one) asking others to do the same! There's no way he can win if he does not get enough votes, and he is going to need a lot of help to beat the political and sports blogs that are already pulling ahead (ick!). Brian needs all the help he can get, and anything you can do to help spread the word would get him a little bit closer to winning.

Go vote :)

Domesticated Animals in the Field meme

Silver Fox's blog reminded me of this new meme, and since I have not blogged here in a few days (check my other blog), I'll join in on this one (sorry for the over use of the word 'blog' in this post lol). Brian at Clastic Detritus started this domesticated animals in the field meme, with Silver Fox, Geotripper, Bryan, and Life-long Scholar following. So here is my contribution for the domestic side of things: a horse. I saw him this summer while working in the Piceance Basin. He did not want to have anything to do with me, other than watch. I really could have used a ride out of there about then too. Ahh well.

Monday, November 3, 2008


Have you ever had one of those moments in your life that you thought would never, ever happen? Something people told you you could not do? Something people told you would never amount to anything? Something you spent years of your life working on??

I have. And today hell froze over. That's right, my first paper in a journal that people actually read was published today!

Hunt, ReBecca K. and Thomas M. Lehman. 2008. Attributes of the ceratopsian dinosaur Torosaurus, and new material from the Javelina Formation (Maastrichtian) of Texas. Journal of Paleontology 82(6): 1127-1138.

Excuse me for just a moment....

Sorry, I had to get that out of my system!

This is how I feel right now:

Symbolism anyone? Yes, Vader is this project. Its all about getting it out of your system and being able to let it go and move on to the next thing. Having this paper finished and actually published is quite the relief.

That being said, I will post a pretty picture from the paper here along with the abstract and I will discuss the paper more at length when I have had time to calm down some.


ABSTRACT—A bone bed in the middle part of the Javelina Formation (Maastrichtian) in Texas yielded parts of about 37 identifiable ceratopsid dinosaur bones, mostly appendicular and limb girdle elements belonging to one juvenile and two adult individuals of Torosaurus cf. utahensis. The bone bed is a lag assemblage comprising large immobile parts of the skeletons accumulated in an abandoned stream channel. In general form and proportions the postcranial bones are similar to those in Pentaceratops sternbergi and are not as robust as those in Torosaurus latus or Triceratops horridus. A few cranial elements are preserved, including parts of a parietal, squamosal, maxilla, and two dentaries. The form of the parietal fragment is comparable to that of a more nearly complete specimen of Torosaurus cf. utahensis collected nearby at about the same stratigraphic level. The bone bed material provides a basis for the first skeletal reconstruction of this enigmatic horned dinosaur. Most characters used in diagnoses of T. utahensis and T. latus are inadequate. Only the raised bar along the squamosal/parietal suture, present in T. latus; and the midline epiparietal, absent in T. latus, may discriminate the two species.