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Ice Age Fossils Returned To Tule Springs Monument

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Tule Springs Fossil Beds will be getting back thousands of fossils from a California museum.

The first permanent superintendent to take over the Tule Springs Fossil Beds National Monument will be welcomed to Nevada by the return of Ice Age fossils once housed in a California museum.

After the National Park Service announced Jon Burpee will follow interim superintendent Vincent Santucci, Tule Springs preservation groups got what they have hoped for for many years.

"We were able to celebrate the return of 10,000 fossil specimens from Tule Springs to Nevada," Santucci said.

A collaboration between the BLM, the Bernardino County Museum and the Nevada State Museum allowed the fossils to return to their home, in the hopes that visitors may one day enjoy them in a visitor-friendly monument site.

The Tule Springs Fossil Beds National Monument was created in December 2014. 

Tule Springs is located at the northern edge of Las Vegas, and now protects about 23,000 acres of land that still struggles with illegal dumping and target shooting.

As the National Park Service enters its centennial year, Santucci said the plans for a Tule Springs visitor center need to be done with care, to create something that can be enjoyed for decades to come.

Picture of a newborn baby mammoth jaw

Vincent Santucci, Senior Paleontologist, National Park Service

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Prior to taking on the role of Broadcast Operations Manager in January 2021, Rachel was the senior producer of KNPR's State of Nevada program for 6 years. She helped compile newscasts and provided coverage for and about the people of Southern Nevada, as well as major events such as the October 1 shooting on the Las Vegas strip, protests of racial injustice, elections and more. Rachel graduated with a bachelor's degree of journalism and mass communications from New Mexico State University.