Fossils collected from the field are carefully wrapped in toilet paper, placed in a box and labeled with the collectors name, date, and position in the section (so distance from the top of the collecting trench). All boxes are then taken back to the only place available for processing and storing fossils, “The A-Frame”. Here, the fossils are carefully unwrapped, trimmed, boxed and given a catalog number. They are then placed in one of the collection cabinets. The group of fossils collected this summer will be transported to the University of Colorado Museum to be researched by myself and Jenell Thoene (Museum and Field Studies Graduate Student).
As you can see, this space is less than ideal! First, the space is way too small. Our paleontology team can’t even fit in the room at the same time. There is little work space and little storage space – boxes are stacked on the floors and it’s hard to keep track of items. The other issue is the rodents! As soon as you walk in, the smell will hit you! Then you can see little pellets in the corners (right next to the rodent deterrent devices – clearly not effective).
Hopefully the folks at Florissant will be able to build a much better work space and I hear that plans have been in the works to build facility for visitors with new exhibits and a collections facility. This has been the plan for many years, but the funding keeps getting delayed. This is so unfortunate. Although Florissant is a small park, the research and programs offered there are so important and they have a great need for those funds and those facilities!