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A 12-year-old found a 69 million-year-old dinosaur fossil while hiking with his dad

October 16, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Nathan Hrushkin has wanted to be a paleontologist for as long as he can remember, and the 12-year-old has already made a significant discovery.

He found a partially unearthed dinosaur fossil while hiking with his dad this summer at a conservation site in the Horseshoe Canyon in the Badlands of Alberta, Canada.

The fossil was a humerus bone from the arm of a juvenile hadrosaur -- a duck-billed dinosaur that lived about 69 million years ago, according to a news release from the Nature Conservancy of Canada.

Nathan and his dad, Dion, had found bone fragments in the area on a previous hike and thought that they might have washed down from farther up the hill.

Nathan said the fossil was very obvious and it looked like "a scene on a TV show or a cartoon or something. "

They sent pictures of the bone to the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Paleontology, which identified the fossil and sent a team of paleontologists to the site.

Fossils are protected by law in Alberta, and the NCC said that it is important that people don't disturb any fossils they may find.

Hadrosaur bones are the most common fossils found in Alberta's badlands, but few juvenile skeletons have been found, the statement said.

"This young hadrosaur is a very important discovery because it comes from a time interval for which we know very little about what kind of dinosaurs or animals lived in Alberta," François Therrien, the Royal Tyrrell Museum's curator of dinosaur palaeoecology, said in the statement.

Nathan had heard of the hadrosaur before his big find but said it wasn't the most well-known dinosaur.

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