06/26/2016 12:28 EDT

Bay Of Fundy Fossils Unearthed From Early Jurassic Period

PARRSBORO, N.S. — Researchers are digging through the sandstone cliffs on the Nova Scotia shore of the Bay of Fundy in search of 200-million-year-old bone fragments that could reveal more about the diversity of life at the dawn of the dinosaurs.

The director of the Fundy Geological Museum said the crew has unearthed bones of lizards from the early Jurassic period and the tip of the snout of what he believes could be a meat-eating dinosaur, one of the first to be found in the Parrsboro area.

Tim Fedak said the fossils scattered along Wasson Bluff date back to a time of great evolutionary change, marking the boundary between the mass extinction event at the end of Triassic period and the rapid proliferation of species that followed.

Fedak said the bones are dispersed in discrete layers of red sediment twisted by the shifting and sinking of an ancient rift basin that was formed when the supercontinent Pangea splintered apart.

He said the forceful tides of Fundy erode the rocks, continually exposing and abrading new specimens, making annual monitoring of the site all the more important.

The museum invited volunteers out to the field over the weekend and plans to stream an online broadcast from the dig site Monday to answer questions from paleontology enthusiasts.

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