Digging for prehistoric whale bones on Lake Waccamaw - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Digging for prehistoric whale bones on Lake Waccamaw

COLUMBUS COUNTY -- Archeologists and a paleontologist were on Lake Waccamaw, digging up bones of a prehistoric mammal.

The scientists were digging for bones of a whale that they say dates back nearly a million years.

Earlier in May, Cathy Neilson was swimming off her pier when she stumbled upon something that felt like a rock.

"We kept stubbing our toes on this thing every time we came to this certain area.  We got some snorkels, and we got down there and started finding this long grey piece," said Neilson.

It turns out that Neilson was stepping on part of a whale's jaw bone.

A state paleontologist and a team of archeologist uncovered the skull of a prehistoric whale in Lake Waccamaw, part of an area that was once covered by ocean water.

They won't know what type of whale they have discovered until they examine the bones.  What they know for sure is that this find is worth more than money; it adds value to understanding North Carolina's prehistory.

Once restored, the skull will be on display at the forestry museum in Whiteville.


Reported by Max Winitz

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