Geology and palaeontology

Grasslands National Park

The geology and palaeontology of Grasslands National Park and surrounding area tell a story of fascinating land formations and fossils. The diverse landforms are windows into geological time. Whether it is a prehistoric triceratops skull from the Badlands or an iridescent clamshell gleaming in the Frenchman River Valley, discoveries of fossilized land and sea creatures stand as testimony to the prehistoric world 60 to 80 million years ago! The East block is one of a handful of places around the world that reveals the Cretaceous-Tertiary Boundary – evidence bearing witness to a world changing event. The revealing landscape of the Badlands led to the first recorded find of dinosaur remains in western Canada in 1874.

What is the Cretaceous-Tertiary Boundary? A thin, white, chalky layer in the soil, separating age of dinosaurs from mammals. Below the line dinosaur fossils are found, above the line are mammal fossils.

Did you know?

The East Block Badlands are one of the richest resources for dinosaur fossils in Canada.

A new species of prehistoric birds called the Brodavis americanus was discovered recently in the East Block of the park.

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