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Fossil Bird Bones in Matrix Tar Pit Fossils


This bone assemblage was recovered from the Maricopa asphalt seep in Southern California in the 1960’s and 70’s.

Two perfect vertebrae , a partial tarsometatarsus and partial pelvis bone in the matrix.

Obtaining ‘tar pit’ fossils is nearly impossible today, unless from an old collection or from private property.

George Lee, a prominent fossil collector collected and kept quite a bit of this material in his warehouse for decades. It wasn’t until his estate was liquidated in the early 2000’s that it saw the light of day again.

This specimen has been painstakingly prepared to showcase the amazing density of bones from the unfortunate victims to the sticky, natural traps of the oozing asphalt seeps that California is known for.

Species not identified. Rancho La Brea Formation late Pleistocene

  • Model: 1606

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