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Museum to unveil bison fossils

NaturalHistoryMuseumSAN DIEGO — Paleontologists at the San Diego Natural History Museum today will unveil the fossilized bones of an Ice Age bison — bones that turned to stone and then rested in what is now North County for 200,000 years.

Caltrans officials said the bison was uncovered during excavations for the State Route 76 East project at Pala Mesa, near Bonsall. It is the first fossilized bison found in Southern California, according to experts at Caltrans and the San Diego Natural History Museum at Balboa Park.

The bison has been moved from North County to the museum, where paleontologists are carefully cleaning sediment from the bones, Caltrans officials said. The state agency usually hires scientists to watch large construction sites for important geologic or anthropologic finds.

The bones will be unveiled at 10:30 a.m. today at the museum at 1788 El Prado in the heart of Balboa Park.