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University of Iowa News Release


April 4, 2011

PHOTO: "Fossil Guy" Don Johnson (right) talks with attendees at a program at the UI Museum of Natural History.

'Fossil Guy' returns to the UI Museum of Natural History

Don "The Fossil Guy" Johnson returns to the University of Iowa Museum of Natural History in April with educational programs at 2 p.m. on Saturday afternoons. All "Fossil Guy" programs are free and open to the public and will be held in Macbride Hall auditorium.

Each program consists of a 30-minute talk by Johnson, a local amateur paleontologist, followed by a close-up, hands-on, question-and-answer session using his collection of fossils and artifacts. Presentations are geared toward elementary-age children.

The series and subjects are as follows:

— April 9: "Dinosaur Predator! Dinosaur Prey!" Learn about the connections between meat-eating and plant-eating dinosaurs at different time periods long ago and from around the world. See a life-sized replicas of the mighty Allosaurus's skull and the powerful jaw of Tyrannosaurus rex. See and touch real dinosaur bones, teeth and claws, including bones of "Laura," the duck-billed dinosaur.

— April 16: "Survivor Among the Mammals." A wide variety of mammals roamed North America during the Oligocene Age, about 30 million years ago, and their remains are preserved as fossils in the White River Badlands of South Dakota, Nebraska and Wyoming. Learn about many extinct herbivores, including oreodonts, hornless rhinos, giant pigs and three-toed horses. Don will also share some of his experiences hunting for these fossil mammals in Nebraska.

— April 23: "Under the Feet of Triceratops." Learn about the mighty Triceratops and other horn-faced dinosaurs. See and touch a fossil Triceratops shoulder blade, jaw, frill section and teeth; a replica horn; and models of other horn-faced dinosaurs. Also learn about the many small animals that lived under the feet of Triceratops, including fish, salamanders, turtles and mammals. During a hands-on interactive time, Don will help visitors identify many of these small fossils from the famous Hell Creek Formation near Jordan, Mont.

For more information on the "Fossil Guy" and other Museum of Natural History programs, visit or call 319-335-0606.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500

MEDIA CONTACTS: Sarah Horgen, Museum of Natural History, 319-335-0606,; Steve Parrott, University News Services 319-384-0037,; Writer: Ryan Lindsay