Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The fossils of La Brea

We're learning more all the time

From LA's La Brea tar pits have come a huge trove of fossils, with over 200 vertebrates represented. Mammoths, sabertooths, short-faced bears (one of my favorites) - they're all here.  The point in this article is that this is not just a source for exhibits, but for ongoing investigations using DNA and other modern techniques. Where did the ancestors of these creatures, especially the massive mammals, come from? More importantly for our own time, where did they go?  Why did so many species vanish in such a short time?  Paleontologists are making new findings... and yes, it's still OK for us to look in awe at the exhibits. 

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