Fossils unearthed at California construction site

July 7, 2014

Giant teeth from a 40-foot (12-meter)-long shark and portions of what could turn out to be an entire whale skeleton are among the hundreds of fossils being carefully unearthed at a dam construction site in California's Silicon Valley.

The San Jose Mercury News reports Monday that over 500 marine fossil specimens have been uncovered at the Calaveras Dam replacement project in Fremont, California.

Most of the fossils are believed to be about 20 million years old, dating to the Miocene Epoch, when the ocean extended as far inland as Bakersfield.

Scallops, clams, barnacles and the teeth of an extinct hippopotamus-like creature called a Desmostylus have all been dug up.

Paleontologists will continue working with construction workers for the next two or three years on the massive job to replace the dam with one more capable of withstanding earthquakes.

Explore further: Brazil court orders work on Amazon dam suspended

Related Stories

Brazil court orders work on Amazon dam suspended

August 14, 2012

A federal court in Brazil has ordered the suspension of work on the huge Belo Monte hydro-electric dam in the Amazon, the third largest dam in the world, a court official said Tuesday.

Massive tech campus sparks mystery in San Jose

March 20, 2014

San Jose has given the green light to a massive new office complex, but city officials and the developer aren't revealing the name of the technology company that will occupy it.

Recommended for you

The hand and foot of Homo naledi

October 6, 2015

The second set of papers related to the remarkable discovery of Homo naledi, a new species of human relative, have been published in scientific journal, Nature Communications, on Tuesday, 6 October 2015.

Who you gonna trust? How power affects our faith in others

October 6, 2015

One of the ongoing themes of the current presidential campaign is that Americans are becoming increasingly distrustful of those who walk the corridors of power – Exhibit A being the Republican presidential primary, in which ...

Chimpanzees shed light on origins of human walking

October 6, 2015

A research team led by Stony Brook University investigating human and chimpanzee locomotion have uncovered unexpected similarities in the way the two species use their upper body during two-legged walking. The results, reported ...

The dark side of Nobel prizewinning research

October 4, 2015

Think of the Nobel prizes and you think of groundbreaking research bettering mankind, but the awards have also honoured some quite unhumanitarian inventions such as chemical weapons, DDT and lobotomies.


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.