New Mastodon Exhibit Opens at Halifax Museum of Natural History

The new exhibit at the Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History opened on Saturday.

Age of the Mastodons centers on the discovery of fossils of two of the enormous beasts, which roamed what is now Nova Scotia more than 75,000 years ago before the last ice age.

The upper teeth of a mastodon found in a Nova Scotia gypsum mine in 1991 are part of the Age of the Mastodon exhibit, which opened Saturday at the Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History. -Eric Wynne

A mastodon tusk was discovered during work at the National Gypsum Quarry at Carrolls Corner in October 1991. This led to an excavation which uncovered approximately 65% ​​of an adult male skeleton and 5% of a juvenile.

Fossils and a life-size mastodon cast are the showcase for the new exhibit. He will remain in Halifax for the remainder of the year and then spend three years on the road across the province. The exhibit will return to the Halifax Museum in 2026.

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The lower jaw of a Mastodon found in a gypsum mine in 1991 is part of a new exhibit at the Halifax Museum of Natural History. -Eric Wynne

Jeff Gray, the curator of visitor experience and exhibits at the museum, said the fossils have been in the museum for 30 years and the COVID-19 pandemic has provided an opportunity to create an exhibit around them.

Unsure if traveling exhibits could be brought to the province due to restrictions, the opportunity arose to create the new exhibit, Gray said.

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