UCMP’s summer adventures (cont.)

(page 3 of 5)
the field in Western Montana for a few days, relocating and prospecting localities from the Miocene Cabbage Patch formation around Deer Lodge, Gold Creek, and Divide, Montana. Fossil finds were limited, although several promising localities were found for future research. Following the work in Montana, Sam continued to Split Rock, Wyoming, where she collected for a few days in UCMP localities from the 1960s and 70s before returning to Berkeley to work in the UCMP.
Edward Davis spent a week of August in Yellowstone with Robert Feranec sampling large herbivore feces for Robert’s dissertation research. He subsequently traveled to the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge in Humboldt Co. Nevada, home of the Virgin Valley and Thousand Creek local faunas, to concentrate on his own research on the effect of climate change on Miocene mammal faunas. There, he prospected for fossils, took igneous rock samples for radiometric dates, and looked for stratigraphic sections that might be useful for paleomagnetic calibration. Many fossils were recovered from localities that have not
Barnosky camp
UCMP camp in the Split Rock area, Wyoming. Samantha Hopkins and Tony Barnosky added to the UCMP collections from this area in connection with Samantha’s research focus on Miocene mammals from the Rocky Mountains.
  been prospected since the 1909 UCMP expedition led by Annie Alexander. Edward plans future work to investigate the development of the caldera lake that formed the Virgin Valley beds and to study the effect of changing global climate on the environments and organisms around the lake.
Bob Feranec spent the majority of his field season in Yellowstone National Park collecting scat samples for a geochemistry project. The project focuses on determining whether resource partitioning can be determined geochemically in ecosystems where only one photosynthetic pathway is used by plants. Assisted by Edward Davis, this field work entailed following herds of mammals over many miles of territory, waiting patiently for “nature to take its course,” and then collecting samples as fresh as possible before the dung beetles beat him to it. The remainder of Bob’s field season was payback time—aiding Edward in the Virgin Valley and Thousand Creeks Localities in Nevada.

Investigating the Hell Creek
Greg Wilson, Bill Clemens, Harley Garbani, and Nan Crystal Arens continued their research in the Hell Creek

Ed Davis and Bob Feranec in Nevada
Edward Davis (front) and Bob Feranec sampling a volcanic ash for potential radiometric dating in the Miocene Virgin Valley beds, Nevada.

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