Students from a William Penn University anatomy class are getting hands-on experience out at the Mahaska County mammoth site today. Biology professor Dr. Janet Ewart took two groups of classes out to the site today to help dig out some new bones.
A team of scientists digging at a Mahaska County mammoth site have a theory on why the bones they're finding are so spread out and at many different depths. University of Iowa Museum of Natural History education coordinator Sarah Horgen says the land where a local farmer found the bones has shifted significantly since the mammoth died.
Scientists are trying to locate more mammoth bones buried underneath Mahaska County farmland. On Friday afternoon, the team used underground radar equipment to try to find out whether the skull or large concentrations of other bones are underground---and where they might be.
The mammoths discovered at a site in Mahaska County belong to different species. One is a Woolly mammoth, the other is a Columbian mammoth, according to the University of Iowa scientists and naturalists leading the dig. Professor Emeritus Holmes Semken told CRI that this is a big development---finding two different species together is rare. He mentioned that Woolly mammoth bones and Columbian mammoth bones had only been found together at one other spot in the U-S, to his knowledge; at a mammoth site in Hot Springs, South Dakota.
A geologist from the University of Iowa is trying to help the excavation team at the Mahaska County mammoth site answer some questions. Soil deposits at the site can tell the scientists more about when the mammoths died---and what the area might have looked like back then.
The Mahaska County mammoth site is teaching local naturalists about what this area might've looked like thousands of years ago---but it's also a learning tool for students. William Penn anatomy students got a chance to excavate some bones this week.
The excavation team at the Mahaska County mammoth site is scrambling to find answers now that it's found even more pieces to the puzzle. On Monday, scientists discovered a big piece of one of the mammoths' skulls---yesterday, when CRI reporters visited the site, the team also uncovered a tusk. These bones are helping scientists put together more of the mammoths' history.
Scientists from the University of Iowa are processing data gathered by an underground radar sweep of the site where a Mahaska County farmer found prehistoric mammoth bones. The group visited the site last week to try to "see" underground.