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16,000 Ice Age Fossils Found at La Brea Tar Pits

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Long before Los Angeles became synonymous with Hollywood movies and television the only drama in town was the traffic on the horse trail now known as the 101 freeway. But even before that -- tens of thousands of years ago -- the Miracle Mile's "Museum Row" was the domain of sabertooth tigers, ground sloths, and other giant, seemingly fantastical creatures of the last ice age.

The motherlode was unearthed in 2006, when workers were digging a new underground parking lot near the Tar Pits. Scientists examining the thousands of fossils decided was a good day to give us an update on a project that could take up to five more years to complete:

Writes the Canadian Press:

So far, scientists have unearthed five of the 23 boxed deposits, removing some 16,000 fossil bones. Among the finds: partial skulls and lower jaws of half a dozen saber-toothed kittens, several ribs and skull of a camel, and assorted remains of a giant jaguar, ground sloth and baby mammoths.
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Finally, a worthwhile story to tell while walking your out-of-town friends passed the eau-de-tar approaching LACMA. Check out a photoessay from the Tar Pits here.