Ancient mammal tracks found at dinosaur site |

Ancient mammal tracks found at dinosaur site

Associated Press Writer

=SALT LAKE CITY – Scientists at Dinosaur National Monument say they have found hundreds of tiny footprints left by mammals 190 million years ago.

Dan Chure, paleontologist at the monument, says he and paleontologist George Engelmann of the University of Nebraska spotted the tracks earlier this month on a canyon wall.

Chure says the tracks are a rare find, mostly because they were left behind at a time when the area was a vast Sahara-like desert where towering sand dunes seldom preserved signs of animal life.

Most of the tracks are smaller than a dime. Chure says the mammals – perhaps the size of a rat – were among the few species that were able to survive between large sand dune fields where there was water, dinosaurs and a few plants.

Dinosaur National Monument straddles the Utah-Colorado border.

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