Are dinosaur fossils a national resource for research and education, or do they belong to those who own the land they are found on -or who buy them from the owners? Part of the problem is the desirability of dinosaur fossils, which fuels a black market in stolen or smuggled fossils. There are those who believe that fossils should be treated as sacred relics, for scientific reasons: after all, the connection between a fossil and the place its found in is an important scientific tool. Others, like commercial paleontologist Japheth Boyce, say it doesn’t matter because there are plenty of fossils, and there will always be more found. To illustrate the overabundance of fossils in our midst, Boyce points to the bounty of Hadrosaur and Triceratops dinosaur fossils that remain unexcavated at just two sites in the western United States.
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