A team of 12 scientists recently completed an audacious fossil hunting expedition to James Ross Island in Antarctica, and returned with over one ton of marine, avian, and dinosaur fossils that are between 71 million and 67 million years old. Highlights of the expedition include plesiosaurs and mosasaurs, two marine reptiles from the late Cretaceous Period. From Smithsonian Magazine:
To reach Antarctica, the scientists flew to South America, and then endured a five-day trip through the Drake Passage. The passage is famous for some of the roughest seas on Earth, and the team battled seasickness throughout the journey. Once they arrived offshore, they set up their home base with the assistance of both helicopters and inflatable boats.
“It’s a very hard place to work, but it’s an even harder place to get to,” Steve Salisbury, a researcher at the University of Queensland and one of the scientists on the expedition, says in a release…
Over five weeks, the team camped on Vega island, hiking over six miles a day to to reach their main hunting grounds where they systematically sorted through rocks.