Idaho's Official State Dinosaur

Idaho is known for its beautiful scenery and outdoor activities. However, many people aren't aware that this state is also home to unique prehistoric creatures.

Fun fact: On July 6, 2023, Oryctodromeus, a creature about as big as a golden-retriever, was officially crowned Idaho's one and only state dinosaur. While Oryctodromeus hails from a bygone era, its recent accolade as Idaho's official state dinosaur grants it newfound significance.

Sketch courtesy of L.J. Krumenacker // Forest Service U.S. Dept. of Agriculture
Sketch courtesy of L.J. Krumenacker // Forest Service U.S. Dept. of Agriculture

In a near-unanimous vote of 61-2, the Idaho House of Representatives bestowed the honor upon the prehistoric creature through the passing of Senate Bill No. 1127.

According to the Post Register, IHR credited the distinction to a fourth-grade class at Ucon Elementary School in Bonneville Joint School District 93, with the assistance of L.J. Krumenacker, an adjunct professor at Idaho State University and a research affiliate at the Idaho Museum of Natural History, the students made a historic decision.

Josh Wheeler Idaho State Representative // Facebook
Josh Wheeler Idaho State Representative // Facebook

What do we know about Idaho's Oryctodromeus?

For starters, we know this tiny dino took center stage during the Cretaceous Period, approximately 98 million years ago.

What sets Oryctodromeus apart from its ancient peers is its groundbreaking lifestyle – it holds the title of the first documented dinosaur to have crafted subterranean abodes. In an era where innovation meant survival, Oryctodromeus disrupted the norm, reshaping our understanding of dinosaur behavior. A pioneering spirit in the world of dinosaurs, Oryctodromeus has rightfully earned its place in the vibrant tapestry of Idaho's fossil history.

Although not as abundant as in other parts of the United States, AZ Animals reports Idaho actually has six different dinosaur species that walked the land millions of years ago.

Scroll on for a look at a five (of the six) dinosaurs that lived in Idaho. 

5 Dinosaurs That Once Roamed Prehistoric Idaho

Nestled amid Idaho's breathtaking landscapes and outdoor adventures lies a hidden chapter in its rich history: the existence of remarkable prehistoric creatures!

Beyond the scenic wonders, features five of the Gem State's six captivating dinosaurs, each with a story etched in the ancient rocks of Idaho.

Scroll on for a look at the extraordinary creatures that offer a glimpse into the fascinating world of Idaho's prehistoric terrain.

Gallery Credit: Ryan Antoinette Valenzuela

Idaho dinosaur fossils: a fascinating portal to the past

The allure of dinosaur fossils in Idaho lies in the captivating journey through time they offer. Each fossil is a tangible piece of Earth's ancient puzzle, a snapshot frozen in stone, unlocking secrets of prehistoric life.

Idaho's fossil-rich landscapes unveil a trove of mysteries, compelling enthusiasts to explore the untold narratives of colossal creatures that once roamed these very grounds.

You might say Idaho's dinosaur fossils are more than mere relics; they're portals to a dynamic past, inspiring us to marvel at the resilience of life and the ever-evolving tapestry of our planet.

Wyoming Dinosaur Center

Thermopolis Wyoming has one of the most interesting and active dinosaur museums in the world. As they continued to make new finds in the area they put in on display, so you can discover and learn.

Let's have a look at some of what is on display.

Gallery Credit: Glenn Woods

Your Kids Will Love Seeing Dinosaurs on this Colorado Road Trip

A drive from Dinosaur, Colorado to Vernal, Utah is filled with dinosaurs.

Gallery Credit: Nate Wilde

You Can Stay in a Colorado Hotel Full of Dinosaur Bones

You’d never know it from looking at the outside, but a hotel in Colorado is a museum filled with dinosaur bones on the inside.

Gallery Credit: Nate Wilde

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