CSU Collaborates on Research Trip with Visiting Scientists

On the weekend of August 10, Dr. David Schwimmer and four CSU geology students joined scientists from the Smithsonian Institution and the University of Southern Mississippi on a research trip. The four CSU geology students and Dr. Schwimmer led a field trip for visiting scientists to several research localities in the region, in search of important fossils from the Cretaceous Period.

"It was a great opportunity for CSU students, and me, to bring together colleagues from the top institutions to our best research sites. All considered, rarely do seven PhD geologists get together in South Georgia to consider matters about 75-million-year-old events,” said Schwimmer. “The results of this weekend will be new collaborations and publications, new ideas, and perhaps PhD graduate school opportunities for CSU geology majors. In addition, some of the most important published research specimens from my work may be permanently cataloged into the US National Museum."

The visiting scientists were exploring several areas where Dr. Schwimmer has collected and published on vertebrate fossils ranging from dinosaurs to sharks in Mesozoic deposits in the Chattahoochee Valley. The Smithsonian scientists included Dr. Matt Carrano, curator of dinosaurs, and Dr. David DeMar, researcher on fossil fishes, and they were visiting to expand the museum’s collections of Late Cretaceous vertebrate fossils. Drs. Mark Puckett and Alyson Brink and students from the University of Southern Mississippi were collecting sediment samples to correlate the ages of strata in Georgia with those in Mississippi, using micro fossils as the dating tools. All of the visiting colleagues took extensive collections to bring back to their institutions, and further visits and collaborations are planned for this academic year.