Rare 12-Million-Year-Old Gannet Skeleton Found on Chesapeake Bay

Rare 12-Million-Year-Old Gannet Skeleton Found on Chesapeake Bay

Scientists are in a jubilant state following the unearthing of an almost entirely intact avian skeleton, estimated to be around 12 million years old, on the Chesapeake Bay’s shores.

The discovered bones were identified as belonging to a gannet, a type of sizable seabird that currently favors nesting along the Chesapeake region.

Ordinarily, avian remains rarely undergo the fossilization process due to their inherent fragility.

Dr. Stephen Godfrey, stationed at the Calvert Marine Museum in Solomons Island, expressed his astonishment, stating, “In all my time along Calvert Cliffs, I’ve never encountered a bird skeleton so remarkably well-preserved. This occurrence is remarkably uncommon.”

This find holds the potential to offer valuable insights into the ecosystem of the bay millions of years in the past, Godfrey noted.

He further elaborated, “We’re privileged to possess this specimen, which has found its rightful place in our enduring collection. As it enters the public domain, it becomes a part of humanity’s shared heritage. Plans are underway to proudly showcase it and commemorate its significance.”

Spanning approximately 20 miles, the western coast of Chesapeake Bay boasts cliffs laden with fossils that trace back to the Miocene epoch.

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