Dinosaur Provincial Park is an extremely beautiful park that is located in the heart of Alberta’s Badlands in Canada. Apart from its alluring beauty, the park is also home to fossil discoveries that draw important insights into the Age of the Reptiles. It has about 35 species of dinosaur fossils that are as old as 75 million years.
The park is nestled in a section of the Grassland Natural Region known as Dry Mixedgrass Subregion. As cold as Alberta can be, this part is the driest and warmest part of the province. The regions features exposed shales and sandstones that together constitute extensive badlands – the largest in Canada.
About 75 million years ago, mighty rivers flowed around this region. Unfortunately, they dried and left sand and mud deposits that make up the walls and hills of the modern day Dinosaur Provincial Park. Again, the area will experience another major climatic change during the ice age (1500 years ago) when the melting ice formed steep sided channels which have resulted in the badlands.
According to Scientists, the landscape was different in the Cretaceous Period, 75 million years ago. The area boasted lush forests mighty rivers, warm inland seas and swampy lowlands that were home to the extinct dinosaurs among other animals. This is why between 1979 and 1991, of the 23,347 fossils collected, 300 of them belonged to dinosaurs.
Of the 35 species of dinosaurs found, only the Hadrasauridae, Ornithomimidae, Tyrannosauridae,Nodosauridae, Pachycephalosauridae and Ceratopsidae families can be said to be well represented. Of course there are other animals’ fossils such as those of marsupials, amphibians and fishes; but the dinosaur fossils are what keep the holidaymakers interested in the park.
If you are more of a modern traveler who is interested in the ‘now’ rather than the past, you will not be disappointed by the parks avifauna species. Among the endemic birds you can expect to see here are the golden eagle, merlin sparrow, prairie falcon, loggerhead shrike, grasshopper sparrow and ferruginous hawk.
The Dinosaur Provincial Park is a great weekend getaway that will help your relax, unwind and rejuvenate your fatigued muscles for another work week. Head out here and have the fun of your life.