Denver Museum of Nature & Science Confirms Dinosaur Fossils Unearthed
at Highlands Ranch Construction Site
HIGHLANDS RANCH, Colo. ― May 20, 2019 ― The Denver Museum of Nature & Science is exploring a Highlands Ranch construction site where dinosaur fossils have been uncovered. The fossils were discovered near Wind Crest, a continuing care retirement community developed and managed by Erickson Living in Highlands Ranch. A limb bone and several ribs from a horned dinosaur were the first fossils uncovered. Work will continue for the next several days to weeks at the secured construction site to determine the size of the bone bed.
“We are so grateful to Wind Crest and Brinkmann Constructors for allowing us the opportunity to evaluate this potentially important scientific find,” said George Sparks, president and CEO of the Denver Museum of Nature & Science.
“It’s always exciting to get a call about possible fossils, and I can’t wait to share more details as we continue to dig,” said Dr. Tyler Lyson, curator of vertebrate paleontology at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. “Finds like this, while relatively rare, are a great reminder of how dynamic our planet is and how much more there is out there to discover.”
Lyson studies the evolution of dinosaurs and turtles and is particularly interested in what was occurring in the Rocky Mountain region 66 to 68 million years ago, which is the age of the rock layer where the fossils are embedded.
“On behalf of the residents and employees of Wind Crest, we are thrilled to be part of such an incredible scientific discovery,” said Craig Erickson, executive director of Wind Crest. “We appreciate the invaluable expertise of the Denver Museum of Nature & Science and our partners at Erickson Living and Brinkmann Constructors as we work together on this exciting opportunity for all of us to learn more about our earth’s rich history.”
“This is a remarkable discovery that our team takes great pride in unearthing. We are grateful for the scientific expertise brought to this discovery by the Denver Museum of Nature & Science and Wind Crest’s great generosity in sharing it,” said David Rahm, project director with Brinkmann Constructors.
Since the discovery occurred at an active construction site, Lyson and his team will work closely with Wind Crest and Brinkmann to safely explore the site and document the fossils. Construction will continue while the Museum team works to determine the number and type of fossils.
The construction site is not open to the public.