Vandals Destroy Dinosaur Nests and Footprints
A rare and extremely significant dinosaur nest site vandalised.
Everything Dinosaur has received press reports that vandals have smashed a number of dinosaur eggs and footprints that made up part of an outdoor display at the Mirador del Cretáceo dig site in Coll de Nargó, Catalonia (north-eastern Spain). The tourist attraction was opened in 2005 and combines a serious palaeontological study of Upper Cretaceous highly fossiliferous sediments with a tourist attraction, which permits onlookers to walk round the site and to view some of the fossil specimens in situ as well as other exhibits that show how dinosaurs nested.
Some of the items believed to have been smashed include dinosaur eggs that had been reassembled from the fossil remains to give the impression that they had just been laid.
Sites containing dinosaur egg remains and evidence of nesting behaviour are extremely rare and the dig site in the Pyrénéen village is believed to represent the largest location of its kind yet discovered in Europe. In addition, the fossils are very well preserved and these in conjunction with the numerous dinosaur footprints that have been mapped in the area indicate the presence of at least six different types of dinosaur present in this Late Cretaceous ecosystem.
One of the Fossilised Eggs Preserved at the Site
Picture credit: (Xavier Delclòs, Faculty of Geology UB)
Sadly, this is not the only example of vandalism reported upon by Everything Dinosaur, back in 2012, team members from Everything Dinosaur published an article about an act of dinosaur vandalism in Alberta, Canada.
To read more about this incident: Hooligans smash duck-billed dinosaur fossils.
More recently, a sauropod bone at the Dinosaur Monument in Utah was broken and a piece stolen, this theft and the damage to that part of the bone that remained led to the specimen having to be removed.
Salvador Moyà, the manager at the Palaeolithic Institute of Catalunya (ICP) called the destruction of the fossils “inconceivable” and the mayor of Coll de Nargó, Senor Benito Fité stated that this was a “catastrophe”.
These incidents are all to frequent, especially at sites which are relatively open and allow public access. Back in 2013, the site was raided by a local resident and several specimens stolen. These were only returned when it became public knowledge that whoever was responsible for the theft would face prosecution for their criminal action.