Bay of Fundya Remains a Treasure Trove of Dinosaur Fossils

Paleontologists continue to unearth prehistoric dinosaur bones along the northern shore of Nova Scotia. The bones—believed to be from the shoulders or hips—were buried in red sandstone along the island’s northern shore before waves recently revealed them. 

"The Bay of Fundy is producing the world's highest tides and eroding these cliffs very quickly," Tim Fedak, the director and curator for the Fundy Geological Museum told CBC News. "Our museum is here and we're down at the beach very frequently. We can see the bones immediately."

Fedak hypothesizes waves would pulverize the fossilized remains into sand in a matter of weeks if researchers weren’t there. Experts estimate the bones are roughly 200 million years old and belonged to large herbivores from the Triassic and early Jurassic periods. The Bay of Fundy provides a treasure trove of research material for prehistoric studies. Similarly sized bones were pulled from the same spot in the late 1990s.

Experts believe a mass extinction occurred in the area based on the volume of findings over the years. This section of Parrsboro cliffs is a boneyard, Fedak said.

"That mass accumulation is very rare. That's another thing that makes this site so, so special," he said. Fedak theorizes the breakup of the giant land mass Pangea into the separate continents the world knows today led to the region’s concentration of fossils. "These are Canada's oldest dinosaurs," Fedak said. "They basically start the dawn of the dinosaurs."