The Plesiosaur Project:
Bringing Back the Tiger of the Cretaceous Seas
A project of the Oregon Paleo Lands Institute & Mitchell School
Tropical Leaf, Clarno Formation
Interactive, hands-on exhibits in the field center will include information about several different themes:
How Oregon was Built:
The Ancient Continent and Accreted terrains
The first Volcanoes: the Clarno Formation
A History of Oregon’s Cascade Volcanoes
Adding the Coast Range: When the Willamette Valley was a bay.
The Columbia River Basalts.
The Ice Age.
Ancient Life and Ecosystems:
Oregon’s Age of Dinosaurs—Ancient Reptiles of Sea and Air. (Plesiosaurs, Ichthyosaurs, Pterosaurs)
Age of Mammals: A brief glimpse.
Ice Age Oregon: Mammoths, Sabertooths, and Giant Sloths.
Fossils of the Wheeler High School Fossil Beds
Climate Change, Extinctions, and Climates through Time:
Causes /Mechanisms of Climate Change, Extinctions
Ancient Climates of Oregon and the Northwest:
Devonian (Chilly climates at the poles; tropical seas—a landscape of extremes.)
Pennsylvanian ( Climate switches from cold to hot—Giant insects rule!)
Permian (Climate Change—a torrid globe—wipes out 90 percent of life—the greatest extinction.)
Cretaceous—warm age of the dinosaurs.
Eocene and the Eocene-Paleocene thermal Maximum: Bananas grow at Clarno.
Oligocene: Climate chills as oceanic circulation changes—the record of the Painted Hills.
Miocene: Cooling continues; grass takes over—a short warming here coincides with Columbia River basalt eruptions.
Pliocene-Pleistocene: Cooling goes on a rampage.
Climate Change today, and what we can do:
Evidence for climate change.
Consequences of Climate Change
What we can do about Climate Change
Wheeler County and the John Day Basin:
What to do and see here.
The Painted HIlls, John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, provide documentation of cooling here, from 38 to 30 million years ago.