The most notable animal fossils, and the best studied aspect of island paleontology, are the pygmy mammoth (Mammuthus exilis). Remains of this species have been known on the Channel Islands since 1856 when they were discovered by a coast and geodetic survey. In 1994 a nearly complete adult skeleton was discovered and excavated on Santa Rosa.
Please visit the The Pygmy Mammoth under the History & Culture section for more information.
Did You Know?
Painted Cave on Santa Cruz Island is one of the world’s largest known sea caves. The cave measures 1215 feet in length (the size of more than four football fields), has a 160 foot entrance, and is almost 100 feet wide.