Dinosauriernas tidsålder i skandinaviska Arktis: en resurs för forskning och bevarande av det geologiska arvet

Tidsperiod: 2021-01-01 till 2024-12-31

Projektledare: Benjamin Kear

Medarbetare: Aubrey Roberts, Jørn Hurum

Finansiär: Vetenskapsrådet

Bidragstyp: Projektbidrag

Budget: 3 480 000 SEK

This project partners two of Scandinavia’s leading natural history museums to investigate ancient polar ecosystems and pioneer fossil geoheritage in the Arctic. The beginning of the Age of Dinosaurs was marked by cataclysmic extinction and extreme global warming that spurred major evolutionary advances. These included the first adaptation of reptiles and amphibians to life in the oceans. However, the precise dynamics of this transition remain unclear, and especially the role of the polar regions as a possible climate refuge and major diversification centre. We will test these hypotheses using spectacular fossils from the Scandinavian Arctic, and a rigorous multidisciplinary approach integrating research with museum-based geoheritage applications. AIM 1. Compile a total-evidence stratigraphical chronicle of environmental change across the Scandinavian Arctic. This will employ iconic museum collections and new field data recovered from East Greenland and Svalbard. AIM 2. Determine the diversity and distribution of early marine tetrapod ecosystems, and pinpoint the emergence of oceanic apex-predators. This will combine phylogenetics, bone microstructure and isotopic geochemistry to infer radiation histories and lifestyle. AIM 3. Coordinate research with geoheritage initiatives to promote sustainable management of polar fossil resources. This will utilise travelling exhibits, virtual museums and geotourism to support fossil conservation and benefit remote Arctic communities.