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Published April 25, 2010, 01:26 PM

Public fossil digs planned in ND

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Paleontologist John Hoganson with the North Dakota Geological Survey is heading four public fossil digs this summer in the western part of the state.

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Paleontologist John Hoganson with the North Dakota Geological Survey is heading four public fossil digs this summer in the western part of the state.

Hoganson came up with the idea for public digs a decade ago and pitched it to state tourism officials. He says the digs have become popular, drawing thousands of people from 24 states and four countries.

This year's digs begin in mid-June. The first is at a 60-million-year-old site that contains fossils of 15-foot crocodiles, crocodile-like reptiles, turtles and fish.

There is a fee to take part in the digs.

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