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Perfectly preserved ice age cave bear found in Arctic Russia

Reindeer herders in a Russian Arctic archipelago have found an immaculately preserved carcass of an ice age cave bear, researchers said Monday.

The find – revealed as permafrost melts over large areas of Siberia – was discovered in the Lyakhovsky Islands with its teeth and even its nose intact. Previously, scientists had only been able to detect the bones of cave bears that became extinct 15,000 years ago.

Researchers from the Northeastern Federal University of Yakutsk, the leading center for research on mammoths and other prehistoric species, hailed the find as groundbreaking.

In a statement from the university, researcher Lena Grigorieva emphasized that “this is the first and only find of its kind ̵

1; a whole bear body with soft tissue.”

He added, “It is completely preserved with all internal organs in place, including even the nose. This finding is of great importance to the whole world. ”

A preliminary analysis showed that the adult bear lived 22,000 to 39,500 years ago.

“It is necessary to perform radiocarbon analysis to determine the exact age of the bear,” university researcher Maxim Cheprasov was quoted as saying.

The bear body was found by the reindeer herders on Bolshoy Lyakhovsky Island. It is the largest of the Lyakhovsky Islands, which are part of the new Siberian islands located between the Laptev Sea and the East Siberian Sea.

Around the same time, a well-preserved carcass of a cave bear cub was also found in another area of ​​mainland Yakutia, the university said. It did not describe its condition in detail, but noted that researchers were hopeful of getting its DNA.

In recent years, there have been major discoveries of mammoths, woolly rhinos, ice age foals, more puppies and cave lion cubs when the permafrost melts.

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