Fossils of rhinoceros, artifacts found in Kalinga’s upland town

By Villamor Visaya Jr

TABUK CITY, Kalinga, July 24 (PNA)-Local officials are upbeat on the tourism prospects in the province as National Museum scientists, archaeologists and researchers have recently found almost-intact body of a rhinoceros, other fossils and artifacts in the upland Sitio Greenhills, San Pedro, Rizal in Kalinga province.

Due to the discovery, Rizal Mayor Marcelo Dela Cruz said the town would possibly reclaim its distinction as an archaeological site because the ancient tools and fossil remains of a pre-historic animal believed to be about 800,000 years old—which have been subject for laboratory validation — were found.

“The scientists are very happy because they found the almost 70-percent intact body of a rhino, which cannot be found in other archaeological sites,” he added.

Aside from the mayor, Paleontologist Dr. Thomas Ingicco, Professor at the UP Diliman Archaeological Studies Program also personally supervised the daily diggings which started on June 8 and will be finished on July 8.

Dela Cruz said that the artifacts—which also include stone flakes which are being used to cut during the early times–and fossils would be brought by the National Museum workers to Metro Manila for safekeeping “but we can deposit and display it in our town later if we can make a secured museum.”

Based on the paleontological researchers, history records that the first discovery in the area was a jaw of a pre-historic rhinoceros in 1935.

Due to the discovery, the mayor said he has coordinated with the local council to “protect, preserve and promote the 16-square-km. Elephant Hill of Rizal as a world archaeological destination.”(PNA)