Richmond Times-Dispatch Weekend

Ice Agewoolly rhino remains found in Russia

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MOSCOW— A well- preserved Ice Age woolly rhino with many of its internal organs still intact has been recovered from permafrost in Russia’s extreme north.

Russian media reported Wednesday that the carcass was revealed by melting permafrost in Yakutia in August. Scientists are waiting for ice roads in the Arctic region to become passable to deliver it to a lab for studies next month.

It’s among the best- preserved specimens of the Ice Age animal found to date.

The carcass has most of its soft tissues still intact, including part of the intestines, thick hair and a lump of fat. Its horn was found next to it.

Recent years have seen major discoverie­s of mammoths, woolly rhinos, Ice Age foal, and cave lion cubs as the permafrost increasing­ly melts across vast areas of Siberia because of global warming.

Yakutia 24 TV quoted Valery Plotnikov, a paleontolo­gist with the regional branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, as saying the woolly rhino was likely 3- or 4- yearsold when it died.

Plotnikov said the young rhino likely drowned.

Scientists dated the carcass as anywhere from 20,000 to 50,000 years old. More precise dating will be possible once it is delivered to a lab for radiocarbo­n studies.

The carcass was found on the bank of the Tirekhtyak­h river in the Abyisk district, close to the area where another young woolly rhino was recovered in 2014. Researcher­s dated that specimen, which they called Sasha, at 34,000 years old.

 ?? ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF YAKUTIA ?? An Ice Agewoolly rhino carcass, found in northern Russia’s melting permafrost, is estimated to be at least 20,000 years old. Scientists­will study the animal, which hasmost of its internal organs still intact.
ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF YAKUTIA An Ice Agewoolly rhino carcass, found in northern Russia’s melting permafrost, is estimated to be at least 20,000 years old. Scientists­will study the animal, which hasmost of its internal organs still intact.

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