This week, in a southern Indiana cavern, researchers have discovered the skeletal remains of several extinct species of animals dating all the way back to the ice age. The skeletal remains were found in unexpectedly great condition, almost as if they were placed in a time capsule. Several paleontologists agree that this is the greatest, most significant bone finding in Indiana state history. Rob Houchens, a paleontologist working in the area, along with his colleagues, have dug up thousands of bones from animals that have been extinct for more than 40,000 years. Perhaps even more exciting, is the fact that Houchens said himself that they are just scratching the surface of what could potentially be hiding deeper within these caverns.
Such animals include the flat head Peccary, in addition to several ancient ancestors of snakes, porcupines, and ice age bears. In addition to the dead species, there are still some creatures making these caverns their home, including the black crayfish, which can live to be over one hundred years old.
Indiana caverns is now listed as the ninth largest cave system in the country, spanning 38 miles, only one of which is currently open to the public. The owners of the cave system believe that only 1% of all the bones here have been discovered so far, and that there is much more to uncover. This is a logical hypothesis, considering the fact that these remains were trapped under glaciers when they sealed off the cavern thousands of years ago. This is without a doubt, going to help scientists take another great step towards finding out more about the mysterious era known as the ice age.