DUNVEGAN FORMATION

(Cenomanian)


Regional Finds

Western Alberta

Pine River area

Tumbler Ridge

 

The Dunvegan Formation occurs in extensive outcrops from northeastern British Columbia, east into Alberta and north into the Yukon Territory.

The first published report of fossil footprints in the Dunvegan Formation was by John Storer (1975) who described some theropod prints from the Pine River area of British Columbia.

Footprints from the Dunvegan Formation had entered museum collections prior to this first publication.  The University of Alberta houses several footprint specimens, most of which were collected by Dr. Charlie Stelck in the 1950's (Currie, 1989). 

Though some footprint finds have been made in Alberta, including a fine slab with skin impressions, most of the recent discoveries have been made in northeastern British Columbia in the vicinity of Pine River and Tumbler Ridge.  The composition of the vertebrate fauna that was present during the deposition of the sediments that make up the Dunvegan Formation is becoming known from the study of the fossil footprints.

The recent research on vertebrate footprints in northeastern British Columbia has had an unexpected benefit to British Columbia palaeontology.  During the course of research on vertebrate footprints fossil dinosaur bones were discovered on two separate occasions.  Prior to 2001, only one identifiable dinosaur bone had ever been found in British Columbia.  Now there are close to twenty bones that have been discovered with the certain prospect of more being found in future excavation operations.

The discovery of the bones gives the hope that perhaps some of the trackmakers of the Dunvegan Formation may be more precisely identified.