The prints, found in Dinosaur Valley State Park in the city of Glen Rose, were located as widespread drought caused water in the Paluxy River to dry up completely in certain areas of the park, a Texas Parks and Wildlife Department spokesperson said.
The incredibly well-preserved trail of dinosaur steps is believed to belong to the Acrocanthosaurus; the carnivorous dinosaur was a three-toed theropod that grew up to 11.5 metres in length. The Acrocanthosaurus roamed the park 113 million years ago.
The area of the new footprints has been named the “Lone Ranger trackway.” The single dinosaur trail is about 30 metres long and is believed to contain 140 tracks in total, only about 60 of which are visible now.
In video posted by Dinosaur Valley State Park, the prints are clearly visible in the dry riverbed, with even the creature’s claw marks still preserved.
Another dinosaur species, the Sauroposeidon, has also had its tracks found in the park. The Sauroposeidon was over 18 metres tall and weighed 60 tons.
Currently, most of Texas is in a drought, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. As per the Drought Monitor data, last week over 87 per cent of the state was categorized as experiencing either severe, extreme or exceptional drought.
Several other states are also experiencing drought, including Nevada and Arizona, where such extreme conditions have caused Lake Mead to see staggering declines in water levels. In July, a sunken Second World War-era landing craft was discovered. This month, even more human remains were also found there.
Internationally, drought in Spain revealed a prehistoric stone circle known as the Dolmen of Guadalperal (dubbed the “Spanish Stonehenge”) in one corner of the Valdecanas reservoir.
Europe’s second-longest river, the Danube, has also recently reached its lowest water level in nearly a century. The drought has exposed the hulks of dozens of German warships sunk during the Second World War near Serbia’s river port town of Prahovo.
In other areas in Europe, including in France and across the Iberian peninsula, water levels have declined or been reduced to a trickle in previously thriving areas.
According to the BBC, not all droughts are caused by climate change, but an overabundance of heat in the atmosphere is drawing greater amounts of moisture out of the earth and worsening droughts.
NASA reported that the past eight years have been the warmest since modern record-keeping began in 1880. In 2021, Earth was about 1.1 degrees warmer than it was when the Industrial Revolution was underway.
NASA said this warming is “largely due to human activities that have increased emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.”