Jun 18, 2018 | Updated: 09:54 AM EDT

Ice Age Animal Fossils Discovered At Metro Purple Line Extension Construction Site In Los Angeles

May 08, 2017 06:15 PM EDT

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At the Metro Purple Line Extension being excavated at Wilshire and La Brea Avenue in L.A.’s Miracle Mile District, construction workers discovered fossils of animals that are dated during the Ice Age. It was said to be the second time that the Los Angeles site was discovered to have fossils.

According to Los Cerritos News, a camel bone and a mammoth or mastodon bone were unearthed last April 12 and 13. The one responsible for finding the fossils was identified to be Metro’s contractor Skanska, Traylor, Shea. The progress of the construction of the Metro Line was halted to focus on preserving the fossils first.

"It's one thing to read in a history book that these animals used to live all over North America, but it makes it more real when they're found in your city," said Ashley Leger, the paleontological field director for Cogstone Resource Management Inc. "This is what lived there thousands of years before they were ever there," she added.

With that said, after the fossils were obtained, paleontologists transfer it to Cogstone Resource Management’s lab in Riverside, California. The previous discovery in the same Wilshire/La Brea Station were noted to be a tusk, tooth fragments and a nearly complete skull from a mastodon. In which were found at the excavation site last November as reported by Live Science.

The team from Cogstone Resource Management then brought them to their lab to identify each of them. Then reported that the first was a rare camel bone from the extinct camel (Camelops hesternus) which originated 45 million years ago. The La Brea Tar Pits in the station was mentioned by scientists to have more than 600 species of plants and animals. However, only 40 camel remains were found.

The other fossil was then identified to be a 36-inch-long (91 centimeters) thighbone, or femur, of either a mastodon or mammoth. Nonetheless, all fossils uncovered in the La Brea excavation site would be donated to the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County.

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