City of Mesa, AZ

111 Ranch Paleontological Project

 

Charles K. Knight mural of some of the animals found in 111 Ranch beds. 

Charles R. Knight mural of some of the animals found in
111 Ranch beds.

 

 The 111 Ranch crew excavates the skull of a Rhynchothere, a four-tusked elephant relative. The crew applies a plaster jacket to a fossil.

(Left) The 111 Ranch crew excavates the skull of a Rhynchothere, a four-tusked elephant relative.
(Right) The crew applies a plaster jacket to a fossil.

Museum Researchers: Principal Investigator Curator Dr. Robert McCord
Andria Skaff, Erin Schirtzinger, Gavin McCullough
Location: East of Safford
Age: Blancan NALMA, Pliocene, 2.4 million years before present
Geological Unit: Gila Conglomerate
Discoveries Include:   Elephants, camels, horses, bears, giant sloths, Glyptotherium, bone crushing dogs, other canines, giant capybara, other rodents, birds, giant tortoises, other turtles, lizards, snakes, and petrified wood.
Comments:                  The Panamanian land bridge had only recently reconnected South and North America and this locality represents a rich assembly of animals going south and coming north.

Publications from 111 Ranch Paleontological Project
 
2009 Who is Kinosternon arizonense?
Robert McCord. Proceedings of the Arizona Nevada Academy of Science 44:6.
2007 Blancan LMA reptiles and amphibians from the Gila Conglomerate, 111 Ranch area, Graham County, Arizona (abstract).
Robert McCord. Proceedings of the Arizona Nevada Academy of Science 42:27.
2005 Miocene and Pliocene vertebrates from Arizona.
Morgan, G.S. and White, R.S., in Heckert, A.B. and Lucas, S.G. (editors), Vertebrate Paleontology in Arizona, New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science, Bulletin 29:115-136.
2005 Pliocene vertebrate faunas from southeastern Arizona and southwestern New Mexico.
White, R.S., Morgan, G.S., and Thompson, M.E. (editors), October 16 - 18, 2005: Road Log and Guidebook, Mesa Southwest Museum Bulletin 10.
2005 Pliocene vertebrate faunas from southeastern Arizona and southwestern New Mexico: road log.
Morgan, G.S. and White, R.S., in White, R.S., Morgan, G.S., and Thompson, M.E., (editors), Pliocene Vertebrate Faunas from Southeastern Arizona and Southwestern New Mexico, October 16 - 18, 2005: Road Log and Guidebook, Mesa Southwest Museum Bulletin 10:1-33.
2005 Early explorations for vertebrate fossils near Safford, Arizona.
White, R.S., in White, R.S., Morgan, G.S., and Thompson, M.E. (editors), Pliocene Vertebrate Faunas from Southeastern Arizona and Southwestern New Mexico, October 16 - 18, 2005: Road Log and Guidebook, Mesa Southwest Museum Bulletin 10:35-44.
2005 Locality gazetteer, Safford and San Simon Basins, Graham County, Arizona, Duncan Basin, Greenlee County, Arizona and Hidalgo County, New Mexico and Mangas basin, Grant County, New Mexico (Pliocene).
White, R.S., Evander, R.A., and Morgan, G.S., in White, R.S., Morgan, G.S., and Thompson, M.E. (editors), Pliocene Vertebrate Faunas from Southeastern Arizona and Southwestern New Mexico, October 16 - 18, 2005: Road Log and Guidebook, Mesa Southwest Museum Bulletin 10:45-53.
2005 Annotated bibliography for the 111 Ranch beds: geology and paleontology.
White, R.S., in White, R.S., Morgan, G.S., and Thompson, M.E. (editors), Pliocene Vertebrate Faunas from Southeastern Arizona and Southwestern New Mexico, October 16 - 18, 2005: Road Log and Guidebook, Mesa Southwest Museum Bulletin 10:55-59.
2005 Arizona Blancan vertebrate faunas in regional perspective.
White, R.S. and Morgan, G.S. in McCord, R.D. (editor) Vertebrate Paleontology of Arizona, Mesa Southwest Museum Bulletin 11:117-138.
2004 Camelops from North America, with special reference to Hagerman, Idaho and the 111 Ranch, Arizona (abstract).
Thompson, M.E. and White, R.S. Getting over the hump: Blancan records of Abstracts with Program, Annual Meeting of the Geological Society of America.
2003 Late Cenozoic camelids (Mammalia: Artiodactyla) from Graham County, Arizona (abstract).
Thompson, M.E. and White, R.S. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology v. 23 (Supplement of Number 3):103A.
2002 A faunal revision and overview of recent research of the Blancan 111 Ranch fossil beds in Graham County, Arizona (abstract).
McCullough, G.M., A. Skaff, E.E. Schirtzinger, and L. Thrasher. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology v. 22 (Suppl. to No. 3):86A.
2002 Environmental reconstruction of the 111 Ranch (Blancan) fossil beds in southeastern Arizona using isotopic analysis, taphonomic observations and cenogram analysis (abstract).
Skaff, A., and G.M. McCullough. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology v. 22 (Suppl. to No. 3):107A.
2002 Camel tracks and trackways from late Pliocene deposits,Graham County, Arizona (abstract).
Thompson, M.E., Meldrum, J., White, R.S., and Thrasher, L.C. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology v. 22 (Supplement to Number 3):114A.
2001 New fossil records from the Blancan 111 Ranch Beds, Graham County, Arizona: Results of cooperative efforts by a federal agency, public and private museums, and the amateur community.
Robert McCord, Lawrence Thrasher, Richard White, B.J. Tegowski, Andria Skaff, Gavin McCullough, and Erin Schirtzinger. Mesa Southwest Museum
Bulletin 8:113-120.
2001 Renewed investigations of Pliocene (Blancan) vertebrate fossil beds in southeastern Arizona: preliminary research of the taphonomy and paleoecology of
111 Ranch fauna (abstract).
McCullough, Gavin M. and Schirtzinger, Erin E. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology v. 21 (Supplement to Number 3):79A.
2001 Recent discoveries at the 111 Ranch fossil locality, Safford, AZ (abstract).
Andria L. Skaff. Mesa Southwest Museum Bulletin 8:111.
2000 Proboscidean fossils from the San Simon River Valley, Graham and Cochise Counties, Arizona .
B. J. Tegowski and Richard S. White. Mesa Southwest Museum Bulletin 7:101-112.
2000 Glyptodonts and other fossils of the San Simon Valley, Graham County, Arizona.
Lawrence C. Thrasher. Mesa Southwest Museum Bulletin 7:113-124.

 

Paleontologists excavate around a plaster covered Rhynchothere skull. 

Paleontologists excavate around a plaster covered Rhynchothere skull.

 

Sometimes the fossils are hard to move. 

Sometimes the fossils are hard to move.

 

Lab volunteers carefully work on a Glyptotherium, a giant prehistoric armadillo relative.

Lab volunteers carefully work on a Glyptotherium, a giant prehistoric armadillo relative.