Ancient rhino remains unearthed during rail project preparations

Črni Kal, 24 February - Preparations of the site for the construction of the Koper-Divača rail track have unearthed 120,000-year-old rhinoceros bone fossils. The excavations will continue for the next three weeks, with the rail project put on hold during this period, said 2TDK, the company managing the project, on Monday.

The excavation site is a filled Karst cavity, with three major bones and a number of small, fragmented pieces dug up so far.

The remains are fragile, but moderately well-preserved. Taking into account similar Karst findings, experts from the Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts (ZRC SAZU) believe that the rhino roamed the Earth 120,000 years ago, according to 2TDK.

The preparatory work for the rail project construction started in March last year and is expected to be completed by the end of July this year.

The 2TDK company would like to sign contracts for the principal construction works by the end of the year.

Currently, 2TDK is picking contractors, the company's CEO Dušan Zorko told the newspaper Primorske Novice today. Two public tenders for the principal works attracted 29 bids altogether and the company is expected to select the two main contractors in autumn.