Beautiful dinosaur discovery: 170-million-year-old footprint found in Scotland

The dinosaur footprint/apatosaurus, a type of sauropod (© The Hunterian, University of Glasgow/iStock/Warpaintcobra)

An extremely rare 170 million year old dinosaur footprint has been found in Scotland. Paleontologists, however, are keeping the exact location secret until they can make their research.

The footprint was discovered earlier this year by Dr. Neil Clark, curator of palaeontology at the University of Glasgow’s Hunterian Museum. Clark told Fox News that he simply had a meet in Inverness in the Scottish Highlands and decided to “make a visit to the Jurassic rocks” in the area.

“After about a half hour looking, I saw the footprint and was able to immediately recognize if the footprint of a sauropod dinosaur,” he told Fox News. “I did a double take on the footprint as I could not believe that such an obvious footprint had not been seen previously, given the number of researchers who visit the coast each year.”


Developed were huge dinosaurs with a long neck and a long tail. The footprint is about 30 cm by 20 cm.

A picture of the dinosaur footprint created by Dr. Neil Clark – for scale, the yellow GPS-in addition to the footprint is approximately 5.5 cm

(© The Hunterian, University of Glasgow)

While many footprints of dinosaurs found on the Isle of Skye, the footprint spotted by Clark is the first to be found on the Scottish mainland. “Previously, all of the dinosaurs found in Scotland are to be found in the west of the country and belongs to a different geographic area called the Hebrides Basin,” Clark explained. “The new discovery adds dinosaurs to a different geographic area called the Moray Basin.”

Dating back to the Middle of the Jurassic period about 170 million years ago, Clark described the footprint as extremely rare. Palaeontologists, he said, the use of the footprint in order to gain insight in the distribution of the dinosaurs.

The precise location of the footprint is kept a secret, while Clark raises money for his research. “I’ve tried to crowdfund the project in order to do what is accurate mapping of the area by a drone to show the footprints of dinosaurs,” he told Fox News. “The research will be started as soon as we are able to crowdfund enough to cover the costs.”


Apatosaurus, a type of sauropod (iStock)


The discovery of the footprints on the Isle of Skye was announced earlier this year.

On the other side of the Atlantic ocean, an incredible dinosaur trail, which still shows the traces of a baby dinosaur, is found on NASA’s Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.

Last year, vandals destroyed a dinosaur footprint in the rock at a renowned paleontology site in Australia.

Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

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