This trail features seven types of animals that once lived in the area now known as Badlands National Park. Each of these lineages met a different fate as the climate changed. Some moved, some adapted to the changes, and some are now extinct. . . . — — Map (db m114175) HM
Rock layers in Badlands National Park contain fossils that show a dramatic cooling and drying of global climate over millions of years. The oldest rock layers contain marine fossils, roughly 70 million years old, from when this area was . . . — — Map (db m113124) HM
Oredonts were common throughout the Badlands, but became extinct. Their fossil remains provide evidence of their lives and habitat. Fossils can develop over time when animal or plant remains are quickly covered in sediment and replaced by . . . — — Map (db m113122) HM
Dogs have changed and adapted over millions of years. Members of the dog lineage gradually evolved in to the wolf by growing longer, stronger legs and a shorter tail. This increased size led to increased strength and power to hunt food and . . . — — Map (db m113177) HM
These rocks were deposited millions of years ago when rivers and wind spread silt, sand, and ash across the landscape. About 500,000 years ago, ancient rivers began eroding this area, leading to the present day landscape. Modern rivers, rain, . . . — — Map (db m113126) HM
Prehistoric alligators lived in swampy conditions, as they do today.
Physically, alligators have changed mostly in size over the last several million years. Modern alligators are larger, growing up to 14 feet long. Ancient alligators grew . . . — — Map (db m113092) HM
The discovery of this specimen led to the golden age of paleontology in North America. After acquiring this fossil from fur traders, Dr. Hiram Prout wrote about it in 1846. His description captured the attention of scientists. At that time, . . . — — Map (db m113176) HM
Ammonite fossils found in the park are evidence that this area was under water 75 million years ago. Some ammonites could grow to more that three feet across and served as a food source for giant mosasaurs and other predators.
The Western . . . — — Map (db m113115) HM
Your fossil discovery begins a scientific process. Every detail is important, even the area around the find. A fossil and its surroundings reveal what types of plants and animals existed and how they lived, died, and changed.
The . . . — — Map (db m113123) HM
Fossils can reveal how animals lived and died, and what their environment was like. Evidence from one of the park's nimravid fossils offers crime-scene clues. The size and location of the holes in the forehead of this fossil match the knife-like . . . — — Map (db m113121) HM
Horses have adapted in North America over millions of years. As woodlands changed to grasslands, the dog-sized, primitive horses gradually evolved into the lineage that led to the modern-day horse.
Mesohippus was the first three-toed . . . — — Map (db m113091) HM