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The Madera Tribune

Bone-ified progress continues at Fossil Discovery Center

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webmaster | 04/12/12

The Fossil Discovery Center has been busy and we are more than pleased at the variety and quality of activities being held there.

The Boy Scouts have an Eagle Scout project going where the Scouts are learning to make rope from tules that will be used to bind tule mats they are weaving to form the sides of an Indian house that will be constructed at the site. All authentic, and it is amazing to find the array of natural materials that were used successfully before newer kinds of technology were developed.

Field trips are going well and April and May are booked solid with the exception of spring break. Under the direction of center manager Blake Bufford, the students are formed into small groups and rotated through stations including the video, place in time of the middle Pleistocene, models and fossils, the preparation lab, mock pond and mock dig. We try to answer every question and there are lots of them. Today’s youth are picking up a surprising amount of knowledge through the resources available now.

We also have a newly installed micro-fossil collector for demonstration and participation. The recovery system washes about 50 pounds of soil in 30 minutes, revealing evidences of plant and animal life that existed at the site. It allows the paleontologist to understand and establish information about climate, the food chain and fill in some of the spaces in the search for as much information as possible about the area 10,000 to a million and a half years ago...


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