Posted: 6:21 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2014

Fossil from Ice Age found in South Lake Union

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The Burke Museum in Seattle
The Burke Museum in Seattle

By KIRO 7 STAFF

SEATTLE —

A mammoth tusk fossil dating to the Ice Age was found in Tuesday in the South Lake Union area.

Construction workers digging at 528 Pontius Ave. found the fossil, stopped work and called the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture.

"Burke Museum paleontologists have examined the fossil and we are confident that it represents a tusk from an ice age mammoth,” said Christian Sidor, the museum’s curator of vertebrate paleontology. “Because the fossil is on private property and does not seem to be associated with an archaeological site, it is up to the landowner to decide what they would like to do with the tusk.”

Sidor said the Burke staff is happy to excavate the fossil if the landowner would like to take that step.

“The discovery of a mammoth tusk in South Lake Union is a rare opportunity to directly study Seattle's ancient natural history,” he said. “As a public repository, the Burke Museum would be pleased curate the tusk and provide access to scientists and others wishing to study it.”

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