09 May 2011

Orcutt & Hopkins, 2011

It's been a long time coming, but as of today, my first paper is officially published.  It's in this month's Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology and has the thrilling title 'The canid fauna of the Juntura Formation (Late Clarendonian), Oregon.'  It's far from groundbreaking work, as most of it is a redescription of misidentified specimens, but it does have its noteworthy elements.  It includes the description of a jaw of the giant dog Epicyon saevus found during our lab's field work in 2008.  It provides information on the postcrania of the even more giant E. haydeni and the much smaller (but previously unknown from the Northwest) Carpocyon.  Perhaps most importantly, it's the first publication to come out of the Hopkins Lab's Juntura Project.  The Juntura Basin east of Burns in southeast Oregon was the research focus of the pioneering paleoecologist J. Arnold Shotwell (also of the U of O) until the 1970s, but has been largely neglected since Shotwell left the field.  Our lab's field work in the area has been the first concerted research project there in nearly forty years, and if nothing else my paper stands as the first fruits of what will hopefully (and presumably) be a very fruitful paleontological endeavor.

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