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Floods Uncover Dinosaur Remains In Md.

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Researchers in Laurel, Md. uncovered a dinosaur bone after Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee hit the region.
Elliott Francis
Researchers in Laurel, Md. uncovered a dinosaur bone after Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee hit the region.

Roughly 100 million years ago, a stretch of land perpendicular to Route 1 in Laurel, Md. was a lot like southern Louisiana, and its waterways were teaming with life. These days, the area is known as Dinosaur Alley.

"Back in those times, the rivers would overflow their banks and dump things that float into the abandon stream channel which include dead animals and at that time it included dinosaurs," says Dr. Peter Kranz, a paleontologist who manages the dinosaur park in Laurel.

Recently, volunteers who work at the site uncovered one of the largest fossil dinosaur bones ever found in the area.

"I've found hundreds of bits and pieces of bones out here over the years, so it's not like the first time, but it's always exciting," says volunteer Dave Hacker, who spotted the find.

The bone fragment is about the size of a large grapefruit and not terribly remarkable to the untrained eye. Kranz says it was washed to the surface by the wind and rain from hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee.

"Somebody mention that this was a thousand year storm," Kranze says. "I don't know about that, but it certainly was a good storm for erosion and that's why we found so much stuff."

The fossilized bone fragment will be shipped off to the Smithsonian for analysis and identification.


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