2012-01-12 / Front Page

Mammoth unveiling at Fossil Discovery Center in Chowchilla

Chowchilla, CA. – The popular Fossil Discovery Center, which has been open a little more than a year since October of 2010, is unveiling the latest and largest of its new exhibits this Friday.

The Fossil Discovery Center has completed the new exhibit, which is the body of an entire Colombian Mammoth that will now greet visitors as they enter the museum. Standing at approximately 13 feet tall, it’s an impressive greeting.

The mammoth will be unveiled at a special event Friday, Jan. 20 at the Fossil Discovery Center. There will be hors d’ouevres and wine from various award winning Madera Wine Trail wineries poured as well. Members can attend the event for just $20 while non members’ tickets cost $25. Membership can be purchased at www.maderamammoths.org.

The Fossil Discovery Center brings to life a very different Central Valley from the Pleistocene era around 700,000 year ago. The area we now call home once harbored numerous unique and fascinating creatures.

Towering Colombian Mammoths, larger even than the Wooly Mammoth, grazed in the fertile grasslands. Sabretoothed cats, California’s state fossil, competed for food with other predators like the Dire Wolf, hunting other prehistoric animals that lived here, including Harlan’s Groundsloth, and relatives of today’s camels known as Camelops. Another denizen was the Short Faced Bear, the largest bear to ever walk the Earth, known to be 11 or taller when standing up.

It’s the remains of these animals and more, that are on display at the Fossil Discovery Center of California in Chowchilla. Perhaps even more impressive, is each of these fossils was unearthed at the dig site, located adjacent to the museum, making Chowchilla home to the largest Pleistocene era fossil bed in the western United States.

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