Mammoth site work continues in mud

Date:

Share post:

Scientists and volunteers got their hands dirty this weekend at the mammoth dig site in rural Mahaska County.

Mammoth site work continues in mud
Workers sift through mud at the mammoth dig site in rural Mahaska County Saturday morning searching for mammoth fossils [Credit: Oskaloosa Herald/Duane Nollen]

The work crew at the site was sifting through mud Saturday morning after workers pumped about 1,000 gallons of ground water that seeped into the pit Friday. That’s about the volume of a small swimming pool, said Dr. Jim North of William Penn University.

“We’ve found some interesting artifacts, so we’re screening,” North said. “We started out looking for large bones and we’re finding small ones.”

The crew is working in a stream bed, so there’s old vegetation, new vegetation and lots of little rocks to sort through, he said.

The mammoth dig site has drawn experts from across the Midwest who want to investigate the site.

Sarah Horgen of the University of Iowa Natural History Museum is coordinating the research effort. She said a group from the Illinois State Archaeology Survey was at the site this past weekend. Also, two high school students from Indianola and Pella helped at the site, she added.

Horgen said that so far more than 100 people have worked at the site and several of those have been there more than once. Also, there are between 35 and 40 people on a waiting list to come investigate the site, she added.

Horgen said mammoth expert Chris Widga from the Illinois State Museum has studied a mammoth tooth found at the dig site and identified one of the two mammoths unearthed at the site as a woolly mammoth. The identify of the second mammoth is undetermined, she said.

North said that the mammoth site has been incorporated into the curriculum of William Penn University science classes this semester. He said students from a comparative anatomy class have uncovered about 14 bones at the site.

North also said that he has written a proposal to use William Penn’s scanning electron microscope to study fossils found at the site. If the proposal is approved, he can use the scanning electron microscope to look at the minerals contained in the fossilized bones and the soil of its surroundings to compare them.

Source: Duane Nollen | Source: The Oskaloosa Herald [October 09, 2012]

ADVERTISEMENT

spot_img

Related articles

Tombs with elaborate carvings found in SW China

Two ancient tombs are found at a construction site in Bazhong city, Southwest China's Sichuan province. Two ancient tombs...

Untangling the Tree of Life

These days, phylogeneticists -- experts who painstakingly map the complex branches of the tree of life -- suffer...

Astronomers discover cosmic double whammy

An international team of astronomers, including Lancaster's David Sobral, has discovered a cosmic one-two punch never seen before. Astronomers...

Largest prehistoric whale unearthed in Egypt

The largest basilosaurus, a genus of early whale, has been unearthed at Fayoum’s Valley of Whales, Minister of...

Shang-era ruins found to be ancient garrison

Through the excavation of the two ancient cities at Wangjinglou heritage site, archaeologists found an interesting saucer-shaped ancient...

Ice Age horse fossil found near Las Vegas

Bones scratched from a hillside northwest of Las Vegas last year have been traced to an ice age...

Humans ate domestic dog, wild cat, fox and badger between 7,200 and 3,100 years ago

Between 7,200 and 3,100 years ago, humans that lived in the Cueva El Mirador at Atapuerca (Burgos) included...

X-rays used to probe colonial-era shipwreck mystery

Delaware archaeologists turned to a Sussex County hospital this week hoping to find some clues surrounding a marine...