Dinosaur Provincial Park and Flaming Cliffs up for “Seven Natural Wonders” Status

The Dinosaur Provincial Park Formation, one of the richest dinosaur fossil sites in the world is in the line up of contenders to be named one of the world’s top natural wonders.  However, amongst the competition for this prestigious accolade is the Flaming Cliffs site of Mongolia, the location of the discovery of many Asian dinosaurs, including the first fossilised dinosaur eggs and nests.

The on line competition which permits the public to vote for their favourite natural wonder is being run by the New 7 Wonders Foundation.  This is a Swiss based, not-for-profit organisation, founded by Bernard Weber,  Swiss-born Canadian film maker and adventurer.

The list of nominees consists of 261 locations from around the world, split into categories like “mountain”, “river” and “rock formation”.  The United Kingdom is represented by a number of entries, Loch Ness in Scotland is joined by the Calf of Man (in the island category), and a nature reserve in the Channel Islands.

The list of nominations also includes natural wonders such as Niagara Falls, the Grand Canyon and Mount Fuji.

Commenting on the inclusion of the Dinosaur Provincial Park, Brad Tucker, visitor services co-ordinator for the park said:

“This is a wonderful thing. We want to encourage all Canadians to go online and vote for us”.

Acknowledging how stiff the competition was he added:

“We’re up against some stiff competition. We’re amazingly honoured to go to the next step.”

Once the votes have been counted and assessed a short-list of 77 entries will be created.  For Dinosaur Provincial Park, this moonscape of amazing rock formations, already a UNESCO World Heritage Site, just making the initial 261 locations is a real honour.

A View of Part of the Dinosaur Provincial Park

Picture Credit: The Dinosaur Research Institute (Indiana University Press)

“It’s absolutely unique on a global scale,” said David Eberth, a senior research scientist at the Royal Tyrrell Museum, the world-renowned museum where many of the dinosaurs and other fossils from the Dinosaur Park are displayed.

In July, voting will close on the short-list and then a panel of experts will decide the top seven.  The announcement will be made sometime in 2011.

To view the nominations and to vote for the seven natural wonders of the world (hopefully a fossil site such as Dinosaur Provincial Park or Flaming Cliffs), you have to visit the official website for the competition.

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