29 December 2010

Winter Update

It has been cold. And rainy. But this has not stopped us from accomplishing a lot both outside and inside.

Current matters of the digging kind:

1. Box 7A is almost done!

Katlynn Thompson on the 7A throne
and volunteer Katlynn Thompson makes excavating the rest of it look easy

2. Box 14 has been exposed down to more levels.

After removing more fill and plastic we have exposed more of the deposit edges and found more boards, metal bands, crumbling sides, buried artifacts from initial excavation (electrical wiring and a tupper-ware lid) and discovered this:

box 14 hole
??? A hole in the west side edge of the deposit.

Recent finds of the ancient kind in 14 include:

dire wolf sacrum
Dire wolf sacrum found at bottom of level 3

proximal humerus of Little Timmy
Little Timmy's humeri. Here is the proximal end of one standing exposed. It has an old break that caliche filled. This end was removed at that break and the rest of the bone lies in level 4. We also have its other humerus lying to the west in L4.

coyote skull under hard asphalt
A coyote skull, seen under the dark hard asphalt in this picture.
It's molars are in the lower center.

caliche layer
We continue to be captivated in curiosity by box 14 caliche. This is the top of a layer of it that we exposed in grid D-3 L4.

caliche in D3-L4 wall
Here is a cross-section of caliche in the D-3 L4 south wall.

caliche close-up
And a closer look because we love it so much.

Recent excavator activities of the non-digging kind

Last month excavators and Aisling took some time to make 2 new temporary museum exhibits featuring findings from Project 23. After putting some good use to the many cold rainy days of December, we now have an exhibit about the taphonomy of our box 1 American lion "Fluffy" and an exhibit about how box 5B was excavated and what we found. Come check them out in the Page Museum near the "fishbowl"!

Also, we have been starting to screen-wash non-asphaltic matrix buckets from box 5B to see if they are sterile. Here Michelle and Karin break apart matrix of different soil types within a grid that have been soaking in water.
screen washing

We are planning on having a larger washing station made for us so we can quickly sort through
the buckets

Stay warm!
pit squirrel warming up