By Staff Reports
(Apple Valley)–On Sunday, May 8, Curator of Paleontology Eric Scott will explore the fossil record of the ancient Mojave Desert in a lecture, “Waters of Life: The Mojave River in the Ice Ages,” at 2pm at the Victor Valley Museum in Apple Valley. This presentation is included with paid museum admission.
The present-day Mojave River flows north and east, mostly underground, to pass through Hesperia, Victorville and Barstow on its way towards Baker. “During the Pleistocene Epoch-the ‘Ice Ages’-global and regional temperatures were frequently cooler than today, and the ancestral Mojave River flowed at the surface along most of its length, fed by more runoff from year-round snow and ice blanketing the San Bernardino and San Gabriel Mountains,” said Scott.
“The ancestral Mojave River filled low-lying basins north and east of the mountains to form broad freshwater lakes,” Scott continued. “Abundant plants and animals, including several extinct species of very large mammals, all thrived on this ready source of fresh water. In the Victor Valley region, ancient river sediments laid down by the ancestral Mojave River are still present, and preserve the fossilized remains of extinct animals such as mammoths, horses, camels, sloths, and even giant bears. The ground under your feet is a rich treasure trove of bones and teeth of Ice Age animals that once called this area home!”
This lecture will be of special interest to visitors who plan to attend a field trip led by Scott, “Mojave River and Lake Manix,” which leaves from the Victor Valley Museum on Saturday, May 14. Trip participants must pre-register.
The Victor Valley Museum is at 11873 Apple Valley Road in Apple Valley. Admission is $5 (adult), $4 (senior or military), and $2.50 (student). Children under 5 and San Bernardino County Museum Association members are free. Parking is free. For more information, visit www.sbcountymuseum.org. The museum is accessible to persons with disabilities. If assistive listening devices or other auxiliary aids are needed in order to participate in museum exhibits or programs, requests should be made through Museum Visitor Services at (760) 240-2111 at least three business days prior to your visit.