Denver Museum of Nature & Science Assembles Excavation Crew, Prepares to Begin Work on Snowmass Dig Site

Denver Museum of Nature & Science Field Report from Snowmass: Monday, November 1, 2010

Note to Reporters and Editors: Starting today, the Denver Museum of Nature & Science will take the lead on communications related to the excavation of the mammoths and mastodons found near Snowmass Village.  The Museum will issue a daily update about the progress of the excavation, and provide images, video and interview clips frequently for your use. We will also notify you when Museum scientists will be available for interviews, and when there will be opportunities to visit the dig site to gather your own photos and video. 

Today: An influx of Museum scientists, staff and volunteers are arriving in Snowmass today to prepare excavating the dig site at Ziegler Reservoir on Tuesday. 

Also, Museum educator Samantha Sands is visiting Glenwood Springs High School, Carbondale Middle School, and Basalt Elementary School with some of the mammoth and mastodon bones recovered thus far, and other specimens from the Museum's collections. Sands will visit additional schools in the Roaring Fork Valley on Tuesday and Wednesday. 

Over the weekend: Dr. Steve Holen, the Museum's curator of archaeology, prepared the dig site for excavation with the assistance of a small advance team. They created a site map which identifies the areas where mammoth and mastodon bones have been discovered so far. They took samples of peat and silt from the site which will be sent for radiocarbon dating. These samples will give scientists a much better idea about the age of the bones preserved at the site. In addition, the advance team set up a grid over the juvenile Columbian mammoth. The grid will guide the excavation crew in digging dig the fossil in a careful and systematic way.  

Media Availability: Dr. Steve Holen will be available for interviews today by appointment. 

For additional information about the excavation, interview clips, video clips and still images from the site, please check the Denver Museum of Nature & Science's home page and press page. 

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About the Denver Museum of Nature & Science The Denver Museum of Nature & Science is the Rocky Mountain Region's leading resource for informal science education. A variety of engaging exhibits, discussions and activities help Museum visitors celebrate and understand the natural wonders of Colorado, Earth and the universe. The Museum is located at 2001 Colorado Blvd., Denver, CO, 80205.  To learn more about the Museum, check www.dmns.org, or call 303-370-6000.

Many of the Museum's educational programs and exhibits are made possible in part by generous funding from the citizens of the seven-county metro area through the Scientific & Cultural Facilities District.

Media Contact:
Laura Holtman
Public Relations Manager Denver Museum of Nature & Science
C: 303-548-4336
laura.holtman@dmns.org

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