Famous Tar Pits: "La Brea"

“La Brea,” of course, is Spanish for “The Tar.” These are soft deposits of tar over which water accumulates. Perhaps once every hundred years, an animal blunders in, is trapped, and dies.

The Spanish and American settlers in this part of California dug out the tar to use it. Eventually, someone became curious about all the bones and scientists started to study this evidence of past life in North America. By that time, the top 10,000 to 12,000 years of evidence was gone, losing us a chance to understand what happened after the glaciers retreated. It could have been a snapshot of evolution in action. It’s still a fascinating look into the past.

The picture is courtesy of LotStreetWiz, who visited the La Brea Museum in the background. In the foreground is the largest of the famous Tar Pits.

THIS POST WAS made later and BACKDATED to the date when the picture was taken.


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