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History from Time Immemorial…

... is being told by fossils and their world of stone, leading us in a long trip back in time to the Jurassic!

About 140 million years ago this region was covered by a large lagoon, it had a subtropical climate and it was home to animals like ammonites and Archaeopteryx birds - a transitional species between reptiles and birds. Nowadays we can imagine how its landscape was looking like searching for fossils in one of the Altmühltal Nature Park's stone quarries.

Exhaustive information about fossils and geology are to be found in the region's specialised museums, too. They are like a window looking onto the Jurassic era and its mysteries. Besides impressive exhibitions, here you can also find guided tours both for ...

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The Primeval Bird

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Archaeopteryx

Only ten specimens of this fascinating fossil exist worldwide, and all of them have been found in the Altmühltal Nature Park!

The primeval bird known under the scientific name of Archaeopteryx lived about 150 million years ago, towards the end of the Jurassic. Despite its reptile features like teeth and a long vertebrate tail, the archaeopteryx was no pterosaur – in fact it had feathers, as only birds have.

Lithography

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Art and Stones

The lithographic technique was developed between 1796 and 1798 by Alois Senefelder.

In Germany only the Solnhofen limestone slabs were suitable for this flatbed printing process, thus the Altmühltal Nature Park soon became an important site for lithography. Nowadays lithography is still in use, especially for artistic purposes, for instance in the Lithographie-Werkstatt laboratory in Eichstätt.
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Naturpark Altmühltal
Naturpark Altmühltal