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The Cretaceous in Alabama, US

Cretaceous in Alabama map

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Cretaceous Fossils

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Paleontology and geology

Rocks from the early part of the Cretaceous Period are all deeply buried in Alabama, but the last half of the Cretaceous is well preserved at the surface. These rocks contain both freshwater and nearshore sediments, indicating that the shoreline of the Gulf of Mexico lay far inland from its present position. This sandy shoreline ran from near Auburn in the east to just north of Montgomery and Tuscaloosa, then curved northward to just west of the Muscle Shoals area.

Fossil leaves from these sedimentary layers suggest that near-tropical forests covered the part of the state not inundated by the sea. Offshore lay a rich, warm ocean filled with marine life that left behind many fossils of clams, snails, ammonites, nautiloids, and even some complete skeletons of marine vertebrates such as turtles, fish, and mosasaurs. Fossils are so abundant in these layers that Alabama is recognized as one of the best locations in the world for collecting a variety of Cretaceous marine fossils.

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Organizations | Research and Collections


Museums (showing 1 of 1 listings)

Alabama Museum of Natural History: Collections: Experience the natural diversity of Alabama through exhibits from the Age of Dinosaurs, the Coal Age, and the Ice Age. View the Alabama Museum of Natural History's extensive collections of geology, zoology, mineralogy, paleontology, ethnology, history, and photography. Located in historic Smith Hall on the University of Alabama campus, the Museum's mission is to broaden the knowledge of natural sciences and human culture through collections and quality programs of research, instruction, and service; many family-friendly events are offered.

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Research and Collections

Researchers (showing 1 of 1 listings)

David T. King's Homepage: David King, Jr., a professor of geology at Auburn University, has assembled a web page detailing his work on Alabama geology. Topics covered here include meteor impacts in Alabama, Alabama dinosaurs, and the Paleozoic and Mesozoic geology of the state. Numerous scientific papers are posted here.

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