Date of Press Release: August 29, 2013
“Changing Shorelines, Early Habitations, and Marine Reptiles of Southeast Alaska”
Jim Baichtal, Forest Geologist, Tongass National Forest
Friday, September 13, 2013, 7 p.m., Egan Lecture Hall, University of Alaska Southeast
The ancient ancestors of marine mammals such as dolphins and killer whales are emerging along with changing sea levels and coastlines due to deglaciation. A fascinating presentation on the discovery of 220 million year old Triassic marine reptile fossils from several localities in Southeastern Alaska, including the recently discovered Thalattosaur, a fossil marine reptile similar to today’s marine iguana.
Tongass National Forest Forest Geologist Jim Baichtal will kick off the University of Alaska Southeast Evening at Egan Fall Lecture series with a presentation highlighting some current geologic studies here in Southeast Alaska. The presentation will share the findings of two areas of ongoing research. First, research focusing on changing sea levels and coastlines since de-glaciation has resulted in models to predict early habitation sites. Jim will share the development of the paleoshoreline models and the incredible results of their application.
Secondly, Jim will give an update on the discovery, excavation, and identification of 220 million year old Triassic marine reptile fossils from several localities in Southeastern Alaska. These include several species of Ichthyosaur ranging in size modern day dolphins to some larger than killer whales. He will also share the discovery and preparation of the recently discovered Thalattosaur, a fossil marine reptile similar to today’s marine iguana. The lecture summarizes many years of data collection and partnerships with numerous organizations such as the US Geological Survey, University of Alaska Southeast, and the University of Alaska Museum.
The Evening at Egan Lecture series runs consecutive Fridays through Nov. 15, 2013. For the full line-up, please see the website at: www.uas.alaska.edu/eganlecture
Evening at Egan lectures are simulcast on UATV Cable Channel 11 or live via Flash streaming video.