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Giant Wolf’s Head Discovered

This story may not be Madeira related, but it is fascinating. A 32,000-year-old giant wolf head whose brains, teeth, fur and soft tissues are still intact was found in Siberia last year, and details of the discovery have just been released by the Yakutia Academy of Sciences.

A press release confirms that the wolfs head was found last summer in what is known as the ‘eternal ice’ located along the river edge in Yakutia in Eastern Siberia. The remains were then transferred to the Yakutia Academy of Sciences, and studied by both Russian and Japanese palaeontologists who established that the frozen head belonged to a 32,000-year-old Pleistocene wolf (Canis dirus).

The length of the head is 41.5 centimetres long and is approximately half the size of a modern wolf whose body length varies between 66 and 86 centimetres.  It is thought that the Pleistocene wolf  was a huge animal, and the fact that the brain, teeth and some of the soft tissue and skin are intact has made this a ‘sensational discovery.

In a statement by Albert Protopopov of the Yakutia Academy of Sciences ‘this is the first time that anyone has discovered the preserved remains of a Pleistocene Wolf and that researchers will be able to compare its DNA (which will be done in conjunction with researchers from the Swedish Museum of Natural Species) with today’s modern wolf.

Samantha Gannon

info at madeira


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