March of the Fossil Penguins

Fossil penguin discoveries and research

Arriving in Dunedin

with 3 comments

These tree ferns stand outside the hallowed halls of the Otago University Geology Museum.  During our trip to the South Island, we will be spending a lot of time working in the lab and museum in this building. Dr. R. Ewan Fordyce, discoverer of many incredible marine fossils ranging from penguins to whales, will be hosting us.

Things are always busy in the Geology Museum, with fossil preparation, geological dating from microfossils, exhibit creation, and even whale dissections occurring in the average month.  We are getting into some exciting work preparing, sampling and interpreting new penguin fossils.  In the photo below, Dr. Paul Brinkman begins exposing bones from a juvenile fossil penguin skeleton, one of the only examples of its kind.  We hope to determine the species and learn how this ancient animal grew over the next few days and weeks.    More from the lab, and from the field, soon!

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Written by Dan Ksepka

December 15, 2011 at 1:07 am

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3 Responses

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  1. Those pics bring back fond memories.

    Have fun!

    Traumador the Tyrannosaur

    December 15, 2011 at 2:29 am

  2. I have yet to visit NZ but the Otago Univ. Geological Museum is now on my bucket list. Very much looking forward to reading about the progress you make with the fossil penguins.

    Nina F

    December 15, 2011 at 12:35 pm

  3. Traumador, perhaps we have met before. When did you visit the museum? Nina, the museum is free and open most days of the year – I hope you do get a chance to stop by and see the wonderful exhibits.

    Dan Ksepka

    December 21, 2011 at 2:20 pm


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