Indiana Sewer Project Unearths Trove of Mastodon Bones

This April 15, 2019 photo shows Joe Schepman, right, and his son, Brad, standing with the remains of a mastodon found on their property in Seymour, Ind. Atlas Excavating recently discovered the remains of a mastodon on property owned by Schepman. The remains include the majority of a tusk, part of a jawbone with teeth, two upper leg bones, a vertebrae, a joint and part of the skull. The tusk was split into two pieces and together made up about a third of the tusk. (Jordan Richart/The Tribune via AP)

SEYMOUR, Ind. — Workers installing sewer lines across a southern Indiana farm unearthed the fossilized bones of a mastodon that likely stood about 9 feet (2.7 meters) tall.

The bones include most of a tusk, parts of a skull and a jawbone with teeth. They were recently dug up on a farm in Seymour, about 60 miles (96 kilometers) south of Indianapolis.

This April 15, 2019 photo shows remains of a mastodon found on a private property in Seymour, Ind. Atlas Excavating recently discovered the remains of a mastodon on property owned by Schepman. The remains include the majority of a tusk, part of a jawbone with teeth, two upper leg bones, a vertebrae, a joint and part of the skull. The tusk was split into two pieces and together made up about a third of the tusk. (Jordan Richart/The Tribune via AP)

Joe Schepman owns the farm with his family. He tells The Seymour Tribunethat “it’s amazing to think about something this large roaming around this area.”

Ron Richards is senior research curator of paleobiology at the Indiana State Museum. He says the mastodon would have stood between 9 (2.7 meters) and 9½ feet (2.8 meters) tall.

Richards says the fossil’s age will be determined using radiocarbon dating.