the_final_straw
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Hi! Two weeks ago I returned from birmingham universities geology trip to Almeria. Along the many interesting features we did see, such as a clast as big as a church, and a goat stampede, one of the things we did not see was a fantastically preserved coastal floor with a wonderful array of footprints, from flamingoes to a perplexing single lion's print in the middle of the bed.

This is because a good 15-20 years ago while our lecturer was fresh out of university, a geology trip from another university destroyed the bed trying to collect the fossils, and also graphittied the rocks- with there names. He wont tell us which university however, and I want to know if any of you have been on the same trip, and been told the same story, and found out.
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alex p
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the only exposure of the mudflats we saw in sorbas were in a cliff section so the only prints we got to see were in loose debris, there werent any exposed platform.

as for the lecturer knowing which uni destroyed the area *if they did*; i doubt it. many unis that do geology use that area (manchester, cambridge and liverpool were at the same outcrop as us on the same day) and i know portsmouth do it as well. so if he does know its either geuss work, or he was there, and if he was there its a protected area which does often have one of the police groups check up on, why not talk to or report at the time?

also, the area gets alot of attention from collectors, the whole story seems questionable
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Age_of_Innocence
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(Original post by the_final_straw)
Hi! Two weeks ago I returned from birmingham universities geology trip to Almeria. Along the many interesting features we did see, such as a clast as big as a church, and a goat stampede, one of the things we did not see was a fantastically preserved coastal floor with a wonderful array of footprints, from flamingoes to a perplexing single lion's print in the middle of the bed.

This is because a good 15-20 years ago while our lecturer was fresh out of university, a geology trip from another university destroyed the bed trying to collect the fossils, and also graphittied the rocks- with there names. He wont tell us which university however, and I want to know if any of you have been on the same trip, and been told the same story, and found out.

Say hello to Ivan for me.
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hothedgehog
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Southampton go too. One of our lecturers tells us a story about that area but it wasn't destruction like you say, just something along the lines of him getting arrested for taking a few samples so I don't think it's the same situation. To be fair, what's fallen out of the cliff is fair game to be taken imo.
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alex p
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(Original post by hothedgehog)
Southampton go too. One of our lecturers tells us a story about that area but it wasn't destruction like you say, just something along the lines of him getting arrested for taking a few samples so I don't think it's the same situation. To be fair, what's fallen out of the cliff is fair game to be taken imo.
lol, ian h?

southampton is notorious for field trips - getting in trouble and injuries. 2 guys with us doing the 5 week course were arrested for "robbery", clive b and rex got into trouble in tenerife in a national park and i ended up getting threatened by every farmer in menorca and the us army
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hothedgehog
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(Original post by alex p)
lol, ian h?

southampton is notorious for field trips - getting in trouble and injuries. 2 guys with us doing the 5 week course were arrested for "robbery", clive b and rex got into trouble in tenerife in a national park and i ended up getting threatened by every farmer in menorca and the us army
Yeah, it was Ian! I've not heard too much about mapping project fiascos but Ian was telling us about the spain trip where the hostel they were staying in got stormed by a bunch of tourists to the area. A bit random!

I've heard many amusing things about Rex in Tenerife... mainly alcohol fuelled - i'm quite looking forward to that trip! In fact, i'm quite looking forward to 3rd year :yep:

We went on one of the last fieldtrips clive boulter did with us and i am totally convinced he is actually a goat.
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alex p
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(Original post by hothedgehog)
Yeah, it was Ian! I've not heard too much about mapping project fiascos but Ian was telling us about the spain trip where the hostel they were staying in got stormed by a bunch of tourists to the area. A bit random!

I've heard many amusing things about Rex in Tenerife... mainly alcohol fuelled - i'm quite looking forward to that trip! In fact, i'm quite looking forward to 3rd year :yep:

We went on one of the last fieldtrips clive boulter did with us and i am totally convinced he is actually a goat.
i wouldnt think its too random, 50 drunk english people in spain, probably wrecking stuff, its kind of understandable really :p:

yeah, rex is great for that, our year it was him and the phd's doing crazy little thing called love at the karaoke bar, and the year before him and and another phd doing barbie girl.

lol, the older geology lecturers are far too exuberent and fit, its odd, john marshall included in that, hes very fast for a small man. i think the worst one with clive was his jokes about his own shorts/hot pants when lying down in reference to dorrik stows balls popping out of his during a girls viva
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hothedgehog
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(Original post by alex p)
i wouldnt think its too random, 50 drunk english people in spain, probably wrecking stuff, its kind of understandable really :p:

yeah, rex is great for that, our year it was him and the phd's doing crazy little thing called love at the karaoke bar, and the year before him and and another phd doing barbie girl.

lol, the older geology lecturers are far too exuberent and fit, its odd, john marshall included in that, hes very fast for a small man. i think the worst one with clive was his jokes about his own shorts/hot pants when lying down in reference to dorrik stows balls popping out of his during a girls viva
Ha ha.. brilliant... it's odd without stow here because we hear all kinds of stories about him and see his stuff referenced left right and centre. Still, it's awesome when in the second year the lecturers become really friendly and awesome. They were never like that in first year.
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Silky666
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(Original post by the_final_straw)
Hi! Two weeks ago I returned from birmingham universities geology trip to Almeria. Along the many interesting features we did see, such as a clast as big as a church, and a goat stampede, one of the things we did not see was a fantastically preserved coastal floor with a wonderful array of footprints, from flamingoes to a perplexing single lion's print in the middle of the bed.

This is because a good 15-20 years ago while our lecturer was fresh out of university, a geology trip from another university destroyed the bed trying to collect the fossils, and also graphittied the rocks- with there names. He wont tell us which university however, and I want to know if any of you have been on the same trip, and been told the same story, and found out.
Apologies for the late reply. But stumbled across this while researching my old University.
Here are the facts as i remember them :
Southampton Uni.. class of 94.
I think we were in Almeria in 97 .
Was the Geology lot with the following lecturers : definitely Harding. Possibly Westie and Boulter.. I think Murray and others. Bit hazy so dont take it as certain.

Anyway.. a group of us stumbled across this fossilized river bed or beach with bird prints.
There was no tape or evidence of previous work.
A few of us started to chip away and before you know it there were 15 students hacking away. Totally destroyed a good 15ft slab if memory serves me right. It was like a crazy pack mentality.
Lecturers didn't see it ( actually i think one unnamed one saw and said nothing ).
Stuffed the fossils in our rucksacks and hiked out.
Hours later , maybe next day, Spanish police turn up ( about 7 ) at our hotel with some head government guys from antiquities or their version of our national trust.
All our rooms searched. Fossils removed. We got to keep our passports ( still had 4 days or so to go ).. but all lecturers passports taken and some taken away to police station and arrested.

Apparently a local Uni turned up to check on it as they had been working for a while to preserve the fossils. Only to find it in pieces.
We were the only foreign uni in the area so wasn't much detective work.

There were threats of the some jail for lecturers. But pretty sure the spanish uni said if everything was returned it was ok . !!?
Weird given the place was wrecked.

I have no explanation of why it happened other than it was like a pack mentality.
Very ashamed of the whole event. We all were. Had spent the previous 2yrs finding fossil footprints and Ichthyasaurs etc. without issue. We knew the rules and genuinely had an attitude of respect for geology.
Its just went from looking at them to hacking at them in about 20 seconds. Just crazy and obviously very wrong.
No excuses all the years later. Sorry.

Anyway hope you enjoy the reality behind that event.
Regards Silky.
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Justvisited
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(Original post by the_final_straw)
a perplexing single lion's print in the middle of the bed
This can be explained in terms of a scenario where the lion was swimming in shallow water which covered the bed, except that along the lion's route there was a single point with a slight rise of the "coastal" bed which allowed the lion to make just one single paw contact with said bed. At all other times/points it was free swimming. I'm also thinking flamingo legs are longer than lion ones, which explains why they made all their own prints where the lion didn't. That constrains the typical water depth to quite tight margins.

What's more interesting though is why there would be flamingo prints all around this lion print/track. Doesn't sound like hunting flamingos was the first thing on the lion's mind, nor escaping the lion on the flamingos', or they'd have been flying off and defo not leaving any prints. Plus lions aren't very natural swimmers so in the water they wouldn't be in their element for hunting as per their stalking/chasing/pouncing MO.
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