Oregon State Football Stadium Construction Turns Up Ice Age Mammoth BoneBy Russell Westerholm
During construction for upgrades at Oregon State University's football stadium, workers Ice Age mammoth bones where the locker rooms were to be installed.
According to The Corvallis Gazette-Times, archaeologists from the school removed at least one large mammoth bone from the construction site Tuesday. The school is blocking off the area of the discovery while construction continues.
"We believe we have an intact femur from a mammoth," OSU spokesman Steve Clark told The Gazette-Times. "There also appear to be bones from other species, including possibly a bison and a camel.
Loren Davis, an associate professor of anthropology at OSU, examined the bones at the discovery site Tuesday and confirmed there did not appear to be any human remains and the animals appeared not to have been killed. She said the area where the bones were found was likely once a bog or a marsh.
"Animals who were sick would often go to a body of water and die there, so it's not unusual to find a group of bones like this," Davis said in a press release. "We had all of these types of animals in the Willamette Valley back then."
OSU has been upgrading Reser Stadium for more than a decade, expanding its capacity by 11,000 over the last three years.
"It just goes to show there's a whole world of the past that exists underground," Davis told The Oregonian. "It's so neat we could find it here at Reser Stadium. As you're watching a football game, you can think, beneath your feet, lie the bodies of extinct animals that relate to the past."