The raging floodwaters of the Missouri River have exposed a cache of dozens of bison skulls, including specimens as much as 10,000 years old, downstream from Oahe Dam.
The skull collection is likely headed for display in Rapid City museums.
Employees of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers discovered the skulls in recent weeks as the Missouri River has receded following this summer’s flooding. The skulls were found on a sandbar near Pierre, but the Corps declined to reveal the exact location of the cache to deter looters.
Corps employees removed the skulls and are transferring them to the state Archeological Research Center in Rapid City.
Archeologists there and at the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology will travel to the location of the find to search for more bones and fossils. Read more.