Category Archives: Paleontology

CT Scan of Fossils Sheds Light on Tooth Replacement for Plant-Eating Dinosaurs

New fossils excavated by the Museums of Western Colorado from the Mygatt-Moore Quarry in Rabbit Valley reveal how different species of gigantic plant-eating dinosaurs were able to coexist in the same ecosystem with limited vegetation. In a newly published research article titled “Evidence for niche partitioning among ground-height browsing sauropods from the Upper Jurassic Morrison Formation of North America,” Museums of Western Colorado Curator of Paleontology, Dr. Julia McHugh, shows that this type of resource … Read More

Kids Take Over at the Museum

Summer Camp! Two words that bring back memories for many of us. This summer, the Museums of Western Colorado teamed up with a number of great organizations to bring summer camp to some special kids from around the Valley. As the final part of the BLM grant that brought you our amazing new websites (http://westerncoheritagejr.org/ and http://www.westerncoloradoheritage.org/), we hosted free Explore-It Summer Camps for Riverside Educational Center, Girl Scouts, and Mesa County Partners. With the … Read More

2018 Heritage Awards

It is with great pleasure that the Museums of Western Colorado recognizes outstanding individuals and groups for their contributions toward preserving our community’s heritage at the Sixth Annual Heritage Awards, hosted at the Museum of the West. We are pleased to announce winners in the following categories: Archeological Award Glade V. Hadden George Callison Paleontological Award Dr. Rodney Scheetz Historian Award Dr. Steve Schulte Steve and Denise Hight Preservation Award Leslie “Bill” Ellicott Heritage Enterprise … Read More

Museum and BLM Partnership

Since 2014, the Museums of Western Colorado and the Bureau of Land Management have been working on developing a joint website to showcase digital exhibitions and to share information about collections with the public. The BLM grant funding the project provided resources to build a professional website and a children’s website, offer a series of educational camps for children, and design an educational kit to be used by the Grand Mesa Youth Services Center. The … Read More

Museums of Western Colorado to Host Guest Lecture on 200-Million-Year-Old Utah Dinosaur Fossil 

Join the Museums of Western Colorado’s guest lecturer Rob Gay, Director of Education for the Colorado Canyons Association (CCA), as he presents new findings on a fossil identified as the oldest dinosaur bone found in the State of Utah. This guest lecture will be held at Dinosaur Journey in Fruita on March 9 at 7 pm, free of charge, and will highlight the results of an article published in the Utah Geological Association’s journal Geology of the Intermountain West that identifies this fossil from the Late Triassic Period (220-200 million years ago).   The collaborative efforts of three paleontologists – Xavier Jenkins with Arizona State University’s … Read More

Theft of the Don-Mobile at Dinosaur Journey

On Saturday, February 3, a 1993 Dodge Dakota truck was stolen from the Museums of Western Colorado’s Dinosaur Journey, a truck that was a key tool in the museum’s mission and efforts to discover and excavate fossils from paleontological sites such as the Mygatt-Moore Quarry in Rabbit Valley near the Utah border. This truck played a significant role in transporting water, equipment and tools to the dig sites, which are often in remote areas, and … Read More

2018 Digs Preview

Dinosaurs of the Western Slope: A Four-Day Paleo Expedition Summer 2017 is over, but at the Museums of Western Colorado we already are planning the 2018 ‘dig’ season. One of the new experiences to be offered in 2018 is a longer expedition, designed for the most avid dinosaur lover! Those for whom one day out at the quarry or in the lab simply is not enough will spend four days fully immersed in paleontology of … Read More

Museums of Western Colorado Volunteer Kay Fredette Honored as Colorado’s Outstanding Tourism Volunteer of the Year

As a retired dental hygienist, she used to clean people’s teeth. Now, as a 78-year-young superstar volunteer at Dinosaur Journey in Fruita, she cleans dinosaur teeth, bones, and other fossil specimens. For her 31 years of volunteer work with the Museums of Western Colorado, Kay Fredette was honored in October at the annual Colorado Governor’s Tourism Conference with the 2017 Jack Snow Award for Outstanding Volunteer of the Year. “I cannot imagine anyone more worthy … Read More

Opening a Quarry

At the end of spring, on the eve of summer, each year the Museums of Western Colorado prepares to open the Mygatt-Moore Quarry in Rabbit Valley for dig season. It’s not as easy as just unlocking a gate and digging with a shovel… We first have to remove the excess dirt and rock we put over the quarry every fall. We do this to protect the site from fossil poaching, vandalism, and to keep winter … Read More