Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Wednesday in Wyoming - July 31, 2019

bison, Wyoming State Museum
Wyoming's state mammal is the bison, so it's only fitting that there would be a bison at the State Museum. What makes this exhibit more interesting than might be apparent at first glance is that the base of the poles are not ordinary metal circles but are bison-shaped.

bison exhibit, Wyoming State Museum

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Wednesday in Wyoming - July 24, 2019

This week Cheyenne is hosting Frontier Days, the biggest event of the year. While the highlight is the world's largest outdoor rodeo, the ten days of CFD (shorthand for Cheyenne Frontier Days) are filled with many other events that make it a delight for visitors.

From pancake breakfasts to grand parades to the Thunderbirds' spectacular air show, there's something for everyone.

I particularly enjoyed seeing this float in one of the parades, since it features an early bookmobile. Who can live without books? I certainly can't.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Wednesday in Wyoming - July 17, 2019

Tapiromorph fossil, Wyoming State Museum
This doesn't look like a particularly exciting exhibit, does it?

The boxes may look ordinary, but what's inside is anything but ordinary. This exhibit, which traveled to the Wyoming State Museum earlier this year, contains fossils from a tapiromorph.

If you're like me, you've never heard of a tapiromorph. I knew about tapirs, because I'd seen one in a zoo, but tapiromorph was a new word for me. The short version of a long story is that it's a prehistoric animal that appears to be closely related to modern tapirs.

Here's more information about tapirs in general and the techniques used to identify the fossils.

tapiromorph exhibit, Wyoming State Museum

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Wednesday in Wyoming - July 10, 2019

It's not easy to remove fossils from the earth. This exhibit, which is next to the Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton I showed you last week (see the tail on the left side?), shows some of the tools scientists used.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Wednesday in Wyoming - July 3, 2019

Tyrannosaurus rex Wyoming State Museum
One of the largest exhibits in the Wyoming State Museum is this replica of a Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton. If you were wondering why it's there and so prominent, it's because Wyoming is noted for its fossils, including those of dinosaurs.

The quotation on the back wall says, "There is no square on earth as rich as Wyoming in its fossil forms of extinct life. From the Permian ... to modern annals, nearly all of the life that ever lived upon the earth can be found within the limits of the state. -- Curator William H. Reed, University of Wyoming, 1899"

Who knew that the Equality State was also a treasure trove for fossil hunters?