Volunteers unearth mammoth bone in Kennewick - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Volunteers unearth mammoth bone in Kennewick

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KENNEWICK, WA.-- After eight long years of research and digging, volunteers at the Coyote Canyon Mammoth Site finally have their hands on the 17,449-year-old humerus bone of a mammoth!

The bone had to be carefully extracted, but is now on its way to being preserved by the MCBONES Research Center Foundation. But, what's amazing is that the geologists and archeologists who helped dig it up already know a number of details about the creature just by looking at the bone. 

"We know it's a male, because of this bone," Bax Barton, a paleontology research associate at the Burke Museum. "We can tell in this particular case the age of the development of the animal... So how old was he when he died."

To be specific, he was 43. 

Experts also say, however, that the bone is just one piece of a much larger puzzle they are trying to solve by studying the sediment surrounding it.