Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Frozen bison

A team of international researchers led by Natalia Serduk of the Russian Academy of Sciences in Moscow have just completed a necropsy of the most complete frozen mummy of the extinct steppe bison. The bison (ABOVE, MORE PHOTOS HERE) was discovered by Yukagir tribesmen in the Yana-Indigirka Lowland of eastern Siberia. It had died at the end of the last Ice Age, 9,300 years ago, and its excellent preservation allows anatomical comparison with modern and extinct species of bison and cattle. The lack of fat around its abdomen indicates possible starvation. This bison is one of only four of this species found in the world, and one of only two preserved in their frozen state. Paleontologist Olga Potapova of the Mammoth Site of Hot Springs in South Dakota, U.S., explains, "The next steps to be done include further examination of the bison's gross anatomy, and other detailed studies on its histology, parasites, and bones and teeth. We expect that the results of these studies will reveal not only the cause of death of this particular specimen, but also might shed light on the species behavior and causes of its extinction."

1 comment:

  1. Really cool article! I wonder how many frozen critters are out there that have not yet been discovered.


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