Rangers discover ancient fossils in the California Valley. “The right place at the right time”


“Important” scientific discoveries were made in the Mokerumne River basin at the foot of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

Greg Francek, a ranger at the East Bay Municipal Utility District, explained how he found fossils millions of years ago while exploring the valley last summer.

“I looked around the area further and found a second tree,” Francek said. EBMUD statement Released on Thursday. “And one-third, etc. After finding dozens of trees, I realized that what I was seeing was the remains of a petrified forest.”

Petrified wood Derived from plant materials that are protected from rot when buried in sediments. After that, when the groundwater flowed through the sediment, it turned into stone.

Later, Francek discovered fossilized bones from “unknown vertebrates” in the woods.

“It was really like’the right place at the right time’.” Francek said, According to KTXL. “When I found the bone, I knew it was a bone, but at that moment I didn’t realize that I was actually seeing the bones of a great beast that roamed the landscape millions of years ago. That’s it. “

Francek sought a paleontology and geology expert who made more discoveries in the area.

The discovery of these fossils included elephant-like mastodon, prehistoric 400-pound salmon with spiked teeth, camels, three-fingered horses, turtles, and “pig-like mammals” called tapirs. included.

Bones are believed to date from 23.8 million to 5.3 million years ago in the Miocene. Approximately 1.4 million people in the San Francisco Bay Area get water from the Mokerumne River basin, and EBMUD has managed 28,000 acres of land in the basin for nearly 100 years.

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