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Cretaceous Airport

Dinosaurs have been found in strange places, but the following excerpt from Cretaceous Airport, an informative booklet by Louis Jacobs, Ph.D., describes one of the more unusual settings in which dinosaur fossils are found.

"'In a few minutes, we will be landing at DFW Airport.'" That is what you hear as you arrive at the world's second busiest airport. But buckle your seat belts as you read this: Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport is the home to dinosaurs, sea monsters, sharks and other denizens of the ancient world.

"Over 90 million years ago, the ocean ran all the way up and past the DFW Metroplex; there was no land where Houston, Austin and San Antonio are located. That was all under water. In fact, to the northwest of DFW Airport, the ocean flooded through the interior of western North America to join in one continuous sea way with the Arctic Ocean.

"Waterways at DFW erode the earth and expose the strata, or layers, in which dinosaur and other fossils are found. East of the runways at DFW you will find marine fossils, mosasaurs, plesiosaurs and sea turtles but west of the runways, a baby Nodosaurus was recently found by a twelve-year old student. Other finds include a Tenontosaurus and a ferocious 40-foot meat-eater, Acrocanthosaurus."

Dr. Jacobs, who has led and participated in expeditions around the world in search of dinosaurs, has been instrumental in working with local museums, the Dallas Paleontological Society, and amateur fossil collectors to organize a survey of the fossil history of the DFW Metroplex.

Cretaceous Airport is recommended by The Dinosaur Society. This 28-page booklet, including four pages in color, is available for only $3.95. Educational discounts available. For more information, please fax inquiries to Louis Jacobs, The Saurus Institute, at 214-768-2701. Proceeds from the sale of this booklet go to support dinosaur science (ISBN 1-883515-01-7).

About the Author
Highlights of a taped interview with Dr. Jacobs are included in Arts & Letters Dinosaurs. Pull down the Database menu, select Sound Effects and A Visit with Louis Jacobs, Ph.D.

A former visiting scholar at Harvard, Professor Louis Jacobs teaches at Southern Methodist University, in Dallas, Texas, and serves as director of the Shuler Museum of Paleontology at SMU. Louis Jacobs doesn't fit the popular image of the tweedy, pipe- smoking professor. His ready smile, and penetrating wit seem at odds with academia. However, when one asks him for a specific number or date, he is likely to look for it written on the back of his hand. "I misplace notebooks," he explains ruefully, "but I've never lost my hands."Professor Louis Jacobs is an eminently likeable man, a quality that has helped him lead expeditions on several continents in search of dinosaurs.

The account of his African adventures can be found in his book, Quest for the African Dinosaurs, winner of The Dinosaur Society's 1994 Colbert Award for the Best Dinosaur Book for Adults. Published by Villard Books, Quest for the African Dinosaurs can be ordered at your favorite bookstore (ISBN 0-679-41270-0). While in Malawi, Africa, Dr. Jacobs and his team discovered hundreds of fossils and the remains of a brand-new dinosaur, which he christened Malawisaurus.

Dr. Jacobs' latest book is LoneStar Dinosaurs, published by Texas A&M Press.

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