MERCED COUNTY (CBS13) – The ice age has returned to Merced County with an incredible find unearthed by Caltrans workers at a construction project on Highway 99.

On Wednesday, paleontologist finished removing mammoth bones dating back to the ice age from the construction site.

“Caltrans is committed to preserving these historical artifacts,” said District Director, Carrie Bowen. “We are using the proper protocols to maintain their integrity for future study.”

Caltrans stopped construction once the bones were unearthed. Scientists were then called in to document, catalog and remove the fossils.

Along with mammoth bones, paleontologists also identified the partial remains of dogs, horses, bison, camels and antelope. While not unheard of, scientists say it was unusual to find so many ice age fossils in Merced County.

Caltrans is now resuming work on the construction project and will keep a paleontologist on-site to monitor the work.


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