Paper No. 229-2
Presentation Time: 2:00 PM
ASSESSING THE PRESENCE, CONDITION, AND MANAGEMENT CONCERNS OF PALEONTOLOGICAL RESOURCES IN LAKE CLARK NATIONAL PARK AND PRESERVE, ALASKA
This study provides baseline documentation of the presence, condition, and associated management issues concerning paleontological resources (fossils) in Lake Clark National Park and Preserve (NP&P), Alaska. The park is known to visitors and researchers alike for its many glaciers and active volcanoes, but less is known about the paleontological resources in the park. Fossils from Lake Clark NP&P range in age from Late Triassic (228-209 Ma) to Paleocene-Eocene (66.0-33.9 Ma). The oldest known fossils in the park are those from the Late Triassic Kamishak Formation (237-209 Ma). The majority of paleontological resources in the park are from the middle Jurassic (174-164 Ma) rocks of the Iniskin-Tuxedni region. This region includes the Fossil Point site—home to the most well-known, best preserved, and most easily accessible fossils in the park. Fossils from this site include marine invertebrate fauna such as ammonites, bivalves, and belemnites. Other fossiliferous rock units in the park contain conodonts, a few brachiopods, fossil wood and plant material, as well as marine invertebrates similar to those found at Fossil Point. Paleontological data were compiled from published and unpublished reports, museum records, field notes, and field surveys. Additionally, the Alaska-wide paleontology database has been expanded to include data from the park. The database incorporates basic information about fossil sites with management-focused fields in a format that can be easily queried and viewed spatially. This report coupled with the Alaska region database provides park managers and staff with comprehensive documentation of fossil sites and recognition of high-risk and/or scientifically interesting sites that may warrant future action by National Park Service officials.