Visitors to a US state park in Utah had been destroying 200 million-year-old dinosaur tracks by way of throwing them into the water, park officers say.
While this has been an ongoing downside for a few years, officers say the dangerous behaviour has greater dramatically in the ultimate six months.
The dinosaur tracks are one of the most largest attracts to Red Fleet State Park and plenty of had been irrevocably broken.
Visitors had been throwing the tracks round as though they have been simply rocks.
Devan Chavez, a spokesman for the Utah Division of State Parks, told the Washington Post that a minimum of 10 of the bigger footprints left by way of dinosaurs, starting from three to 17 inches (eight to 43cm), have disappeared in the ultimate six months.
“There are few other places where visitors can hike, swim, boat, and relax right next to dinosaur tracks,” park supervisor Josh Hansen says.
Some of the bigger tracks have been left by way of a dinosaur known as a Dilophosaurus, which used to be “about the size of a small horse”, in accordance to Mr Hansen.
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Recently, a juvenile used to be stuck with two tracks in his fingers as he used to be about to throw them in the water, Mr Hansen says.
The vandalism has no longer been intentional, and a majority of it’s been accomplished by way of youngsters who “just want to make a big splash in the water,” he added.
Mr Hansen instructed the BBC the park can be in a position to recuperate one of the vital tracks, nevertheless it all is determined by how they hit the water and if they have got shattered in the method.
In a observation at the Red Fleet State Park Facebook web page, park officers prompt guests no longer to disturb any rocks at the dinosaur monitor.
They discussed whilst it isn’t unlawful to throw rocks into the water, it’s unlawful to displace the ones containing tracks.
Park officers are having a look at choices to remedy the issue and for now, have put further indicators in position to discourage any rock throwing.
Citations can be used as a preventative measure.