On PBS NOVA: Ice Age Death Trap
Monday, February 13, 2012
In the Rocky Mountains, archaeologists uncover a unique fossil site packed with astonishingly well-preserved bones of mammoths, mastodons, and other giant extinct beasts. The discovery opens a highly focused window on the vanished world of the Ice Age in North America.
In the episode, Professor Dan Fisher wonders if liquefaction could explain how all these mastodons died. Liquefaction is an earthquake phenomenon that can happen when earthquakes hit an area where the water table is high, it mixes solid ground with water and creates a kind of quicksand into which even entire buildings can sink.
“What we in fact have at Snowmass is something that looks more like a snapshot of a living population,” he said. “It really looks like what you would get if you took a whole family unit and just flipped the switch on them all at the same time.” The episode aired February 1, 2012 but you can watch the entire program on the PBS website.
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