At around 10,000 years old, Smilodon californicus, is one of the younger fossils in the Department of Earth Sciences’ Geology Collection. The bones of this large sabre-toothed cat come from the tar pits of Rancho La Brea, in California, where tar from underground hydrocarbon deposits continues to seep to the surface today. During the last ice age, sabre-toothed cats came there to feed on other animals that had become trapped in the tar, and they became stuck as well.
Item reference: BRSUG 26478
Photographer: Simon Powell
Copyright: Department of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol
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