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Last Updated: Wednesday, 19 May, 2004, 07:21 GMT 08:21 UK
Dinosaur tracks moved from dump
Cambridge University picture of prints
The tracks need to be moved to protect them from damage
Fossilised dinosaur tracks found at a dump are to be cut away from the site so they can put on show at a museum.

The tracks were unearthed at Ardley Quarry and Landfill Site in Oxfordshire in 1997.

Experts believe the tracks in the limestone were made by Megalosaurus and Cetiosaurus 170 million years ago.

Oxfordshire County Council plans to put the footprints, which cover an area of half a kilometre square, on display at a new visitor centre.

The new centre is to built at the County Museum in Woodstock.

Meat-eating beast

The footprints cannot be preserved where they are because they would be at risk of damage from frost, rain and ongoing activity at the site, owned by Viridor Waste Management.

Evidence of Megalosaurus and Cetiosaurus activity has been found in Oxfordshire before, but this site is thought to have particular significance.

The two types of dinosaur which are believed to have created the tracks had very distinct characters.

Megalosaurus was a fierce, meat-eating beast like Tyrannosaurus rex, while the vegetarian Cetiosaurus was more similar to a Brontosaurus.




SEE ALSO:
Dino feet leave their mark
30 Jan 02  |  Science/Nature


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