An arucaria cone fossil. The araucaria is more commonly known as the monkey puzzle tree. Photo supplied.

Fossil plants to be discussed at Courtenay Museum

Cretaceous paleobotany: Food for dinosaurs, food for thought

The Vancouver Island Paleontological Society, and the Courtenay and District Museum and Paleontological Centre are hosting a paleobotany afternoon at the museum. Four species of fossil plants will be described as part of a mini-symposium that will be the lead up to the main paleontological symposium event on August 17-20 in Courtenay. For more information, go to

On Saturday, June 16, from 1-4:15 p.m., Dr. Alex Bippus, Oregon State University, will describe “Fossil mosses from the early cretaceous of California and Vancouver Island.”

Next, Dr. Ruth Stockey, Oregon State University will describe a species of Araucaria from Brannen Lake, Vancouver Island. (The araucaria is more commonly known as the monkey puzzle tree.)

Dr. Brian Atkinson, University of Kansas, will describe “Dog days of the dogwoods,” some of the oldest fossil dogwoods from Vancouver Island ever found.

The final speaker is Dr. Gar Rothwell, Ohio University, who will describe a fossil conifer with his presentation, “Parataxodium flora of the North Slope Alaska.” This species is similar to the Metasequoia.

Join VIPS this paleo botanical appetizer and learn what dinosaurs ate.

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