Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Parking Garage Fossils

The LA Times reports that a major deposit of Pleistocene fossils has been uncovered during excavations for construction of a new parking structure for the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The site is conveniently near the Page Museum at the famous La Brea Tar Pits, which will be taking possession of the fossils.

According to the article the paleontologists have found 16 separate stratigraphic units representing different depositional episodes and fossils identified so far include a nearly complete Columbian mammoth and a horse. Though near the La Brea Tar Pits, the deposit is in a much sandier matrix, making it easier to work in than the thicker asphaltum. It's estimated to be the same age as the tar pits, 10 to 40,000 years ago, but there hasn't been time to perform any dating on these specimens yet.

I've cooperated on projects in the past with the project director, Robin Turner of ArchaeoPaleo Resource Management, who's very sharp.

Click through the slide show, which has some great shots.

If you ever are in LA and have any interest in natural history, I urge you to go to the Page Museum, which is just an unbelievable place.

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