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Massive Mastodon discovery in Cape Breton


By Nathan Coleman
Friday, May 9, 2014, 11:47 AM

A discovery in Little Narrows, Cape Breton is helping researchers widen their knowledge about a massive prehistoric creature.

Workers at a gypsum quarry have uncovered bones of a Mastodon.

Back in 1991, workers came across a tusk and big teeth from a Mastodon. This time around, they found the tibia.

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The fossils found in Little Narrows were recovered in an area that had been in filled by material deposited during the Ice Age.

“The fact that it had been preserved in clay, as it was, actually was very fortunate for us because it did an excellent job of preserving the material,” says Kathy Ogden with the Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History. "Mastodons and dinosaurs belong to two different groups. Dinosaurs lived much earlier and were part of the reptile group. The Mastodons lived much later and in fact, likely overlapped with human habitation of Canada.”

Mastodons lived during the Quaternary Period ,which ended about 10,500 years ago. The material found in Milford in 1991 dated back 80,000 years.

The bones are cracking as they dry out and researchers are hoping to strengthen them from the inside to be able to withstand further study.

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