NARGPaleo.org
online home of the North America Research Group (NARG)


NARG Meetings

Unless otherwise noted, meetings are held on
the first Wednesday of each month
at the Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals.
The meeting runs from 7:00pm - 9:30pm.

Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals
26385 NW Groveland Drive
Hillsboro, OR 97124
(503) 647-2418

 

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Eric Gustafson: The Oldest and Newest Natural History Museums in the World.
Eric Gustafson, associate curator for the Condon Collection at the University of Oregon shared a presentation on significant natural history museums around the world.

Museums included the Natural History Museum, London; Hungarian Natural History Museum, Budapest; National Museum of Nature and Science, Tokyo; Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences, Cambridge and Shanghai Natural History Museum. Eric noted the Oregon fossil Promerycochoerus ' at both the Budapest and Shanghai museums. The Sedgwick Museum had writings from Darwin and Mary Anning. He contrasted the Sedgwick with the Shanghai museum showing how the Sedgwick uses an old-fashioned drawers and filled cases system whereas the Shanghai museum is more open, utilizes lighting and capitalizes on interactive technology.

 

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Doug Emlong: Fossil Pioneer
Aaron Currier will narrarate a powerpoint presentation prepared by Guy DiTorrice that looks into the life and significance of the historical paleontologist Doug Emlong. Doug was an infamous fossil collector who lived near the Oregon Coast, collected significant marine mammal fossils for the Smithsonian, and ultimately made a huge impact on the paleo scene in Oregon.

 

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Ethan Schmunk: Was Amphiocoelias the Largest Dino to Ever Live?
Ethan Schmunk, NARG member, gave a presentation on Amphicoelias. Amphicoelias is a genus of herbivorous sauropod dinosaur that is probably synonymous with the genus Diplodocus. From one bone, it has been estimated to be the largest dinosaur ever discovered. Ethan gave an in-depth analysis of the hypothetical size of the sauropod and if it really could have been that large.

 

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Dr. Bill Orr: Lagerstattens and How They Are Good for Fossils.
Dr. Bill Orr will give a presentation on this topic. Copies of his books Oregon Fossils and Oregon Geology will be available for purchase and signing. He will also be able to identify fossils so bring your mystery specimens.

 

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Aaron Currier: Climate Evidence from the Lyons Flora
Aaron Currier gave a powerpoint presentation on the fossil leaves collected by Phil Knutsen. Aaron's students measured and compared the leaves and came to the conclusion that they could predict the possible average annual temperature and average annual precipiation. In addition to the quantitative results, they also correlated it to current climates in the qualitative analysis. The results will be sent to Dr. Herb Meyer who once researched the locality in his youth and now, as Director of Florrisant, studies the climate changes recorded in fossil leaf records around the country .

 

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Mammoths in the Endzone:
The Oregon State discoveries

Dave Ellingson

 

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Fossils of Morocco
Eric Gustafson

 

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Gerry Lukos: Fossils of France
Gerry Lukos, NARG member, visited a natural history museum in France. She gave a presentation on her experience and some of the fossils of France.

Election of Officers for 2016:
President: Aaron Currier
Vice President: Dan O'Loughlin
Treasurer: Peg Johnson
Secretary: Tami Smith
Board Members: Robert Rosé, Linda Harvey,
MacKenzie Smith, Garret Romaine, and
Debra Shannon-Jackson.

 

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Susan Brown: Dinosaurs of the Carnegie Museum
Sue Brown, NARG member, gave a presentation on the newly renovated Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburg, PA. The focus was on the dinosaur exhibit that has been under construction in recent years.

 

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Brad Newport: Holleywood Ranch
The presentation was a recording of the lecture presented by Brad Newport of the Holleywood Ranch on the petrified wood from his property.

 

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Dave Ellingson: Horse Evolution
Dave Ellingson, NARG member and high school science teacher, will talk about his trip to Nebraska to study horse evolution with Bruce McFadden of the University of Florida and the FOSSIL Project.

 

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

NARG members: My Favorite Fossil
NARG members brought their favorite fossil specimens to share with the group. We talked about what the fossil was, where it was found, how old it was, what techniques were used to prepare and preserve it, and the stories behind the find.

 

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Greg Carr: An Alaskan Fossil Adventure
Greg Carr, NARG member, will talk about his trip to Alaska. He spent some time with paleontologists at the University of Alaska where Bernie the thalattosaur is being studied. Greg participated in some university collecting projects as well and will tell about his adventure.

 

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Greg Carr: Using Online Resources to Hunt for Fossils
Greg Carr, NARG member, will discuss online resources he has discovered that we can use to hunt for fossils.

 

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

MacKenzie Smith: Paleontology of Scotland
MacKenzie Smith, NARG member, traveled on a study program through Oregon State University to Scotland to study geology. Along the way he searched for fossils. MacKenzie shared what he learned and found.

 

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

NARG Members: Fossil Hunting in Auctions
Back in April of the this year a fossil collection of extraordinary size was auctioned from a small barn West of Dallas, Oregon. About a dozen NARG members showed up to cast blind bids and hope for the best. The results were revealed a couple of weeks later with surprises in every box.

This month's program was an extended show and tell by the participants of the auction. We shared what we bid on and why, we talked about the fossils and shared what we knew about them. We also talked about the rewards and pitfalls of buying fossils in auctions in general.

Most of the material was from the Eastern side of the country, including amazing plant and animal specimens from Mazon Creek, as well as mammals and mollusks from Florida. There was also a lot of dinosaur material, not to mention some sweet petrified wood specimens too.

 

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Nick Oberzil: Fossil Marine Mammals and Skull Anatomy
Nick Oberzil, a lifelong enthusiast of fossils and skulls, shared his learned expertise on fossil marine mammals. Nick talked about the biology of current living pinnipeds and how their skulls and bones compare to the fossils we might find on the beach today. Nick participated at the Fossil Fest in Newport this past February and showed numerous prepared fossil specimens.

 

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Dr. William Orr: The Origins of Flight
Bill Orr, Director of the Condon Collection at the University of Oregon, gave a presentation on the evolution of flight and evidence from the fossil record that supports the theories. Dr. Orr is NARG's primary advisor.

 

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Julian Gray: Photomicrography
Julian Gray, Curator of the Rice Museum, gave a presentation on photomicrophy. He shared the processes he follows to capture digital images of mineral specimens. He discussed ways we could adapt these ideas to use the equipment we have and digital software to capture high definition images of our fossil collections.

 

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Jauhn Brasseur: Mammoths
Jauhn Brasseur, NARG member, will give a presentation on Mammoths. Bring your mammoth and mastadon specimens for show and tell.

 

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Aaron Currier: The Keasey Formation
Aaron Currier of NARG presented a talk on the Keasey Formation of Northwest Oregon. More than ten years of search and rescue operations in Columbia County have resulted in some amazing discoveries. A PowerPoint showed the geology and biostratigraphy of the formation and, of course, review the prominent fossils. References were on hand for specimen identification.

 

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

FOSSIL Project: Digitizing Collections
One of the first workshops posted on the myFOSSIL.org website is from the "Collections for the 21st Century Symposium." There are six recorded videos and powerpoints, and we discussed the concept of digitization and watched one of the presentations.

 

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Jerry Dodson: Como Bluff, Wyoming Dinosaurs
NARG member Jerry Dodson gave a detailed report about the trip to Como Bluff for another chance to dig dinosaurs.

 

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Susan Brown: So You Want to Go on a Paleo Dig?
NARG member Sue Brown gave a presentation on Penn State's South Dakota Black Hills Paleontological Field Season. Parker's Pit, a cave, was discovered by accident. She explained how the cave was discovered, where the fossil remains have been primarily located in the pit, dangers of excavating in caves, and then the discoveries.

 

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

NARG Members: Fossil Hunting Stories
NARG members discussed recent fossil hunting efforts. Included in the evenings presentation were reports and pictures from Richard Kimball and John Metz on the Pleistocene Bison dig at Woodburn High School. The first of three weekends of sifting through the peat bog revealed one of the richest successes at the locality so far, including some great vertebra specimens.

Also Tim and Tonya Fisher showed pictures and specimens from their recent trip to Lyme Regis in England where they hunted ammonites.

We had a special report from Caleb, our junior member, who talked about his trip to Como Bluff to hunt for dinosaur bones and showed some of the specimens he found.

  Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Aaron Currier: Fossil Hunting from Ohio streams to the Smithsonian
NARG member Aaron Currier presented notes and photos from his adventure back East. From a search for fossils in Ohio to a search for Dr. Kirk Johnson and the infamous Emlong fossils of the Oregon Coast residing at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum in Washington DC, Aaron shared an anecdotal story of the journey.
 

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

MacKenzie Smith: A new species of Osmundacaulis from the Haida Gwaii
NARG member MacKenzie Smith, on break from his undergraduate studies at Oregon State University, reprised his undergrad thesis lecture presented at a paleobotanical symposium in Victoria, British Columbia. The lecture was on"A new species of Osmundacaulis from the Haida Gwaii”.

 

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

NARG Members: NARG Past, Present and Future
NARG members discussed the past, present and future of NARG activities, protocols and policies, advice, and assistance in developing a plan, particularly for new members joining NARG.

Members were asked to share something about themselves; how long they'd been a member, their speciality, and their favorite NARG memory.

 

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Dr. Bill Orr: Conodonts
Dr. Bill Orr, NARG Advisor (Professor Emeritus, and Condon Collection Director, University of Oregon) gave us a presentation on Conodonts.

Conodonts were discovered in the 1800s, but noone knew what they were for 127 years. In 1983 some Carbon impressions were discovered in Scotland that revealed their true nature. Up until then they were used for age-dating rocks to determine extremely precise geo-chronology, yet they hadn't been identified. Were they a plant or animal? Dr. Orr will share the process scientists went through to explain what they were, leading up to what we know about them today.

  Wednesday, April 2, 2014

NARG Members: NAPC and FOSSIL Project
Aaron Currier and Robert Rosé gave a presentation on their visit to the Florida Natural History Museum, the National Association of Paleontologists Conference, and the FOSSIL Project workshop. Goals for NARG's future were discussed, including networking with other fossil groups, academics, and training resources.
  Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Dr. Steven Manchester: The Clarno Formation Paleo Flora
Steve Manchester is a Paleobotanist from the Florida Natural History Museum in Gainesville. Among the many research projects at the University of Florida, Steven has done extensive work on the Clarno Formation in Central Oregon. He shared a talk about the fossil leaves, wood and nuts of this age and what they say about Oregon at the time.
  Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Dr. Torrey Nyborg: Crabbing in Oregon
Dr. Torrey Nyborg, a long-time advisor for NARG, gave us a lecture on his crab research. He is preparing to publish reference material on crabs in Oregon and will be working closely with NARG. This was an exciting opportunity to meet an expert on crabs!
  Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Eric Gustafson: Collecting and Donating Protocol
Eric Gustafson discussed the preferred collecting and donating protocol for the University of Oregon Condon Collection. Eric works in curation at the University and shared extensive knowledge and some great stories.
  Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Paul Jenkins and Emily Start were our guests and talked about using fossils to create art. Paul works with metal and discussed how he created a marine reptile sculpture, while Emily demonstrated how she wire wraps ammonites and other fossils.

 

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Patrick Baker was our guest. He presented photos of the dinosaur digs he volunteered on in October 2012  with the Utah Museum of Natural History and talked about his experience volunteering with this group.

Jerry Dodson, NARG member, followed Mr. Baker with a slide show of his trip with Greg & Debbie to Como Bluff, Wyoming to work on a dinosaur dig there.

  Wednesday, October 2, 2013

NARG members Larry Purchase and Richard Kimball presented a talk on Pleistocene Bison.
  Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Sheila Alfsen gave a talk on Fossil Preservation and Fossil Uses. She works with Dr. Orr in the fossil salvage business and this is information that we need to know about how the fossils are formed in the first place, and then what can they be used for besides just looking nice in a display case. This was a great introduction talk for our new members who may just be starting out looking for fossils. There were specifics that will help the skilled long-time members.
  Wednesday, August 7, 2013

NARG member Phil Knutson is an amateur paleobotanist who has focused his studies on the Lyons Flora, an Oligocene formation of mostly leaves about the same age as the John Day Bridge Creek Flora but here on the West side of the Cascade Range. Phil will review the flora and discuss what's known about the formation so far. This will be followed by a field trip to the area to collect specimens.
  Wednesday, July 3, 2013

NARG member MacKenzie Smith gave a presentation on his trip to Costa Rica. His university Geology Club examined the island nation and prepared reports on various topics. MacKenzies was on the geologic history and paleontological resources. He also gave an update on the research that he completed on the fossil pine cone that Debra found on the coast.
  Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Dr. Bill Orr will presented a lecture on fossil salvage work and environmental consulting. Dr. Orr has consulted with large companies and utilities around the Western US that come across fossil resources (alongside his UO Condon collection direction & education work). He shared what is entailed in this business.
Wednesday, May 1, 2013

"Bug Night" was the theme for this meeting. Robert Rosé led a talk on fossil insects and insect damage on leaves. Members brought specimens from the X Locality at McDermitt and Douglas Pass... plus Kemmerer and some local finds as well.
Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Robert Rosé will once again provided some more knowledge on collecting fossils. In this lecture he talked about finding fossils hidden in plain sight. We also looked at some micro fossils that demonstrate just how small some of the fossils can get.
  Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Lara O'Dwyer of the Rice Museum gave a presentation on the Geology of Ireland. She spent some time there performing research and prepared a slide show. She included what she knows about the geologic history and touched on fossils as well.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Members brought some of their favorite fossils. We discussed the stories behind the discovery, recovery, transport home, preparation, preservation, display and enjoyment. We also discussed our involvement with the upcoming FossilFest in Newport.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Robert Rosé gave a talk on "Tips for fossil hunters on how to find fossil localities." Robert shared insights from his experiences and offered ideas for using maps and books as well as researching localities online.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Members enjoyed a festive evening of fossils and food at the annual Christmas potluck and fossil auction. The event is the primary fund-raiser for NARG.
Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The Amazing Mazon Creek Paleobiota. We watched DVD lecture by a paleontologist who has written papers on the topic and explains much of it. There was an extensive show and tell of material from Illiinois, including the infamous Tully Monster.


Croc Bones

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

"A potpourri of fossil SAR stories." Peg Johnson discussed a recent field trip to the Chuckanut Flora site. Richard Kimball reported recent discoveries/ recoveries at the Yamhill mammoth site. Bruce Thiel discussed recent preparation efforts of four different Ranid crabs from four different formations and how they compare/contrast. Aaron Currier presented the Jurassic crocodile bones collected by NARG in 2007. They've just recently returned from Iowa . The latest news on the discovery was shared.
  Wednesday, September 3, 2012

MacKenzie Smith reprised his talk on the History of Paleontology in the PNW... the one he gave at our FossilFest. We also talked about the South Coast Trip as well as the Mammoth Dig a couple of weekends ago.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Dr. William N. Orr, professor emeritus of U of O, and co-director of the Condon Museum gave a lecture on the "History of Life" as described by the fossil record.

We also reviewed the specimens and information on Northwest fossil formations to be displayed at the NW FossilFest.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

A video recording of the lecture given by Ray Troll and Dr. Kirk Johnson in Lincoln City. The topic was a behind-the-scenes look at the development of their book "Crusin' the Fossil Freeway" and updates on their new book "The Eternal Coastline."
  Wednesday, May 2, 2012

NARG member Jauhn Brasseur gave a powerpoint presentation on a dinosaur collecting trip he participated in last summer in North Dakota.
  Wednesday, May 2, 2012

NARG member Robert Rosé presented a talk on his travels south during this past winter to visit the Tucson rock, gem and fossil show. Robert shared great stories of his search for Devonian fossils and brought them for show and tell.
 

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Professors Dr. Ruth Stockey and Dr. Gar Rothwell presented a paleobotany workshop for NARG members. A brief lecture and instructions on chemical peels were given followed by members having the opportunity do one themselves. An acetate peel was made from some Jurassic petrified wood.

NARG member MacKenzie Smith also presented an abbreviated lecture on his senior thesis that looked at the affects of volcanic ash on growth rates of Metasequoia.

  Wednesday, March 7, 2012

NARG Member Dan O'Loughlin gave a talk on the use of adhesives in the fossil preparation process. What is good to use and what isn't. Dan presented those who attended with an extensive booklet of instructions, advice and references. Members also received samples of adhesives to start developing consistant and correct preservation techniques.
  Wednesday, February 1, 2012

NARG members Bruce Thiel and Aaron Currier gave a powerpoint presentation about collecting dinosaurs. Bruce talked about his experience in Wyoming on the T. rex "Lee" dig in the Summer of 2011. Aaron talked about a Triceratops dig he participated in Montana in 2005.
Wednesday, January 4, 2012

A NARG member gave a powerpoint talk about photographing geology along with hunting for fossils. Tips for capturing your own in the field were shared. ... fossils and photos!
Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Members enjoyed a festive evening of fossils and food at the annual Christmas potluck and fossil auction. The event is the primary fund-raiser for NARG.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Aaron Currier gave the second lecture in the "Bill Orr Lecture Series." The topic was The Evolution of Fish as Revealed by the Fossil Record." There was a slide presentation with fossil specimens, including lobe-finned fish from the Devonian.

*Powerpoint on Vertebrates: Fish
Right click and save the ppt document to your harddrive.

  Wednesday, October 5, 2011

A video presentation of Dr. Bill Orr's lecture from FossilFest. The topic was on Miocene Marine Mammals: fossil invertebrates from the Western side of the state.
  Wednesday, September 7, 2011

A video presentation of Ruth Stockey's lecture from FossilFest. The topic was on Carbonate Concretions: A newly recognized source of
fossil plants of exceptional preservation.
Ruth Stuckey is a Courtesy Professor at Oregon State University and Professor Emeritus, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada.
  Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The August program was a discussion by Robert Rosé on a book titled "The Pterosaurs from Deep Time" by David Unwin, published in 2006.
  Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The July program was an extended show and tell by NARG Members. Favorite collected fossil specimens were discussed... where it was found, how it was collected, preserved, identified, and/or why it's your favorite.
  Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The June program was a presentation by guest speaker Danny Gilmour, a PSU Grad student in archeology working on a Masters degree. Danny spoke on extinct animals recovered from the Willamette Valley including mammoths, bison, and sloths. He described recent research on patterns of extinction and environmental factors over 10,000 years ago.
  Wednesday, May 4, 2011

NARG member Larry Purchase gave a presentation on Woolly Mammoths, and in particular, the specimen recovered near LaGrande.

Larry presented a powerpoint authored by Dr. Jay Van Tassell, Eastern Oregon University, paleontologist on a 12,700 year (youngest in Pacific N.W.) Mammoth, & 3 other large extinct Pleistocene animals, found near LaGrande, Oregon. The humerus slide show titled "Bulldozer Paleontology", explains how NOT to excavate fossils.

  Wednesday, April 6, 2011

NARG member Robert Rosé shared a slide show of his adventure across the Southern United States. Highlights included plant fossils and comparative contemporary plant collections, petrified wood, and echinoids from Florida.
Wednesday, March 2, 2011

NARG members Bruce Thiel & Andrew Berkholtz talked about how they prepare fossils, including tool and tips. Bruce shared a very detailed powerpoint about his efforts, equipment and success preparing crabs. Andrew showed numerous examples of his prepared specimens.

At the March 2nd NARG meeting, there was an election of officers. The new Board of Directors of NARG is:

President: Aaron Currier
Vice-President: Robert Rose
Treasurer: Peg Johnson
Secretary: Susan Bonallo
Board Members: Bill Sullivan, Michael Santino, Dan O'Loughlin, and Larry Purchase.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Paleontology Museums and University Fossil Collections were reviewed in a powerpoint presentation by Aaron Currier. It was an inside look at the Museum of the Rockies, San Diego NHM, The Burke in Seattle, South Dakota SMT, Idaho Museum of NH, and the Carnegie in Pittsburg.
 
Wednesday, January 5, 2011

There was a brief discussion about involvement in upcoming shows; particularly the Fossil Fest in Newport on February 12. Show and tell.
Friday, December 3, 2010

Members shared a festive evening of fossils and food. The annual Christmas potluck and fossil auction was well attended and prosperous for the club.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


Aaron Currier gave the first lecture in the "Bill Orr Lecture Series." The topic was Identifying Fossil Artiodactyla Using Comparative Anatomy." There was a slide presentation with both fossil and contemporary bone specimens. The text Mammalian Osteology by B. Miles Gilbert is recommended for identification.

Ref. NARG Publications

 

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


Dr. Bill Rember from Clarkia, Idaho made a return visit to give another talk on the Clarkia formation. Dr. Rember presented a slide show describing the fossil flora, and he brought numerous specimens preserved as "peels."

Peel images copyright Dr. Bill Rember, Photos copyright NARG.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Courtney Cloyd, Geology and Paleo Program Manager for the US Forest Service, gave a report on the new paleontology bill (Omnibus Public Lands Act of 2009) and how it will affect paleontological resources preservation.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Reports on the prep lab, campout, and the Dinosaurs at the Zoo/OMSI tours. Planning for the Annual Fossil Fest and Portland Regional Gem & Mineral shows.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

A general discussion of the two-week trip to Idaho, Wyoming, Utah and Colorado. Plans for the NARG campout in Mist.

Ref. Search and Rescue

 

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

A general discussion of the Memorial Weekend trip reports to Sumpter and Virgin Valley, and an update on Wally the Whale. We also planned the upcoming two-week trip to Idaho, Wyoming, Utah and Colorado.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Robert Rosé reported on a visit to the Tucson Gem, Mineral and Fossil Show and a collecting trip in the area.

   

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