Click to learn more about the Asphalt Stork

She's Got LegsAsphalt Stork

The extinct Asphalt Stork (Ciconia maltha) is the only species of stork found at Rancho La Brea and is probably most closely related to the White Stork (Ciconia ciconia). The museum holds at least 500 bones from this species in its collections which may only represent about 30 individuals. This skeleton on exhibit stands at about 4 feet 5 inches tall. Storks are related to the extinct teratorns and the new world vultures.

This terminal phalanx probably belongs to the individual that was discovered in box 5B of Project 23. It has an unusual appearance because this animal may have injured itself in life and the bone shows this healed wound. This is known as a paleopathology.