In a remarkable feat, three amateur explorers have stumbled upon more than 100 fossilised eggs of dinosaurs in Madhya Pradesh. The eggs, belonging to the Cretaceous Era (approximately 144 to 65 million years ago), have been discovered in Kukshi-Bagh area of Dhar district, some 150 kms south-west of Indore.
The rare find is a significant step in the study of pre-historic life in the Narmada Valley.
"All the eggs were discovered from a single nesting site in a start to end exploration for 18 hours at the site in Kukshi-Bagh area, 40 kms from Manavar. As many as 6-8 eggs were found per nests," an excited Vishal Verma of the Mangal Panchayatan Parishad, a group of amateur explorers, told Hindustan Times from near the site.
|Stupendous discovery: Mangal Panchayatan Parishad members with the fossilised eggs. (HT Photo)|
"The eggs are from upper cretaceous era when the dinosaurs were yet to be extinct. These eggs can be categorised in three types of soropaud dinosaurs, which were herbivorous. These animals used to come from far away areas to lay eggs on the sandy banks of the rivers in this area, identified scientifically as Lameta bed," Verma said.
The dinosaurs were 40-90 feet in length, he added.
Along with the fossilised eggs, the team - comprising two other members Rajesh Chouhan and Govind Verma - also discovered footprints of the dinosaurs through which they could also trace the 'track way' of the heavy animals now extinct.
• The richest dinosaur field in India is in the "Deccan Traps" near Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh.
• A small but ferocious dinosaur, about the size of adult humans, was named Jubbulpuria after it was found in Jabalpur by Matley in 1933.
Geological Survey of India's former Director (Palaeontology) Dr Arun Sonakia who was also at the site of the find told this correspondent over telephone, "It's a good job done by amateurs. With this find, the scientists would be able to know more about the spread of the dinosaurs. It can also throw light on the reasons of extinction."
"Plus the nesting sites and large number of fossilised eggs would also throw light on the variety of dinosaurs that existed in the cretaceous era," Sonakia added.
The Parishad had earlier discovered fossilised bones of the dinosaurs in the region.