Palaeontologists Rich McCrea and Lisa Buckley, working for the Tumbler Ridge Museum Foundation (TRMF), identified an accumulation of distinctive dinosaur bone material at a new site near Tumbler Ridge on Monday 21 June, 2004.
The site was brought to the attention of the TRMF by knowledgeable amateur palaeontologists John and Maureen Schulting of Prince George, who had suspected that they had found dinosaur bone and skin. However, their attempts to have this confirmed through sending photographs to universities and other museums were unsuccessful. Once they learned of the existence of the TRMF, they called to share their discovery, and were delighted that it was confirmed to be dinosaurian.
McCrea and Buckley, who have already contributed so much to the study of northeastern BC dinosaurs, explained: ?This recent find of British Columbia?s second dinosaur bone deposit demonstrates that the skeletal record of dinosaurs in this region is more extensive than previously supposed. We anticipate that further discoveries of dinosaur skeletal material will be made in the area. ?
British Columbia?s first significant dinosaur skeletal find (discovered in 2002 and now in its second year of excavation), represents western Canada?s oldest dinosaur material. The new find is much younger, of an equivalent age to the well-known Alberta material. McCrea and Buckley state: ?Though the new site has not been studied long, it seems reasonable to predict that the type of dinosaurs will be quite different from those currently being excavated [at the older site], but may have similarities to the dinosaurs being found just across the border in Alberta?.
The TRMF is planning to apply for permits to allow this material to be collected by their palaeontologists, so that it can be stored and researched in Tumbler Ridge?s new Peace Region Palaeontology Research Centre, and eventually displayed for public education and enjoyment.
TRMF extends its appreciation to the Schultings for the exemplary way in which they handled their discovery, bringing it to the attention of reputable palaeontologists rather than trying to remove parts of it. All regional fossil hunters are encouraged to follow their example.