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The Hell Creek formation of western North Dakota and eastern Montana contains a large variety of plant, pollen, and vertebrate fossils. A high quality plant fossil site near Marmarth, North Dakota was studied to obtain megafloral fossils characteristic of the unit. Plant fossils from the unit were obtained, photographed, and identified so as to obtain a more thorough knowledge of the depositional environment and climate of the region during the Cretaceous period. Fossils identified indicate a forested, deltaic environment rich in water and sediment influx. Introduction The Hell Creek formation of Western North Dakota and Eastern Montana has long been considered one of the richest Cretaceous vertebrate fossil sources in the globe. During the Cretaceous period, a large inland sea covered much of what is now the central United States. This large waterway deposited a wide variety of lithologic facies, ranging from ash beds to coarse, cross-bedded sandstones. Many of the facies within the Hell Creek contain fossils of large vertebrate species, such as the Tyrannosaurus rex and Triceratops. While these sensational finds have given the Hell Creek its fame, much more can be learned from the plant and pollen fossils also preserved. The Hell Creek formation and the overlying tertiary Fort

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Research Report



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