Tourists at a state park in Utah began to throw dinosaur tracks into a lake after mistaking them for regular rocks. A park manager says that the area with dinosaurs tracks has been heavily vandalized as of late and people may not know what they're throwing into the lake are dinosaur tracks.
He adds that signs are posted warning people not to do it.
Getting Rid Of Fossils
Park manager Josh Hansen told the Salt Lake Tribune that he heard splashes while he is untying his patrol boat. What he heard was a kid throwing sandstone into a lake. The kid didn't realize that those rocks had dinosaur tracks on them. Hansen was able to save one of the tracks from destruction.
By the time that he reached him, several dinosaur tracks had already been thrown into the lake. This continues a pattern that Hansen noticed over the last six months, people have been vandalizing the site heavily.
Hansen has seen people just pick up rocks to throw them into the lake. He believes that they don't know that the tracks are on the rocks that they're throwing. Red Fleet State Park may send divers into the lake to see if they can find any of the fossils in the lake. Some of the tracks shatter when they hit the surface of the water.
Dinosaur tracks found at Red Fleet State Park date from around 200 million years ago. They belong to 8-foot-tall carnivorous dinosaurs. Many of the tracks could be found on a trail that runs along a slickrock slope. They're a big tourist attraction.
Utah State Park Urges Caution
People having no regard for the dinosaurs fossils found in the park have become such a problem that the Utah State Parks had to write a post on its blog. The blog stated that visitors to Red Fleet State Park have been breaking the sandstone slabs that contain the dinosaur tracks and throwing them into the lake.
Some of these tracks are 200 million years old. Since the main attractions to the park are the dinosaur tracks, they're urging people to make an effort not to destroy them. Hansen is telling people not to disturb any of the rocks that they may find at the park. He adds that it is illegal to displace the rocks that have tracks on them.
Signs were previously placed around the part of the park with the tracks and authorities will be adding more signs to discourage people from destroying the tracks.