The Royal Saskatchewan Museum is working on conserving a paleontological discovery in the province.
In early October, an operator stockpiling gravel a few kilometres east of Saskatoon spotted something out of the norm. The company, Inland Aggregates, quickly looked up the number for the RSM, which confirmed the fossil was a tusk from a woolly mammoth.
“Conservation of ivory from fossil animals is extremely delicate as, once the tusk becomes exposed to air, it begins to dry out, expand, and crack,” Royal Saskatchewan Museum curator of vertebrate palaeontology Tim Tokaryk said in a news release.
The release goes on to say that the quick action of the crew helped properly conserve the tusk.
Work by industry can uncover rocks that are millions of years old, and in turn, lead to the discovery of fossils like this.
The Royal Saskatchewan Museum’s collection of mammoth remains includes bones, teeth, and a partial skeleton found near Kyle. The release says discoveries like these tell of a tundra of ice fields in Saskatchewan during the glacial period.