Friday, Aug 18 2017
All Cities
Choose Your City
'I've grown fat, got a tan & now look like a Siberian'
Vladimir Lenin, 1897, in Siberian exile

WORLD EXCLUSIVE - Meet this extinct cave lion, at least 10,000 years old

By Anastasia Koryakina
26 October 2015

'Sensational' find of two cubs, the best preserved ever seen in the world, announced today.

The cave lions were almost perfectly preserved in permafrost and could be much older. Picture: Academy of Sciences of Yakutia

The unprecedented discovery of the ancient predator was made this summer in the Sakha Republic, also known as Yakutia. The cave lions were almost perfectly preserved in permafrost and could be much older.

The Siberian Times is proud to be working with the Academy of Sciences of Yakutia which will introduce the cubs properly at a presentation to the Russian and international media in late November.

Along with the two lions, paleontologists will also show other Pleistocene animals preserved by ice in this vast region, the largest and coldest in the Russian Federation. Among these will be the famous woolly mammoth Yuka, the 'Oimyakon' mammoth, the carcass of a Kolyma woolly rhinoceros, and Yukagir bison and horses.

Interested media organisations are invited to use the contacts below if they wish to attend. 

The cave lions - Panthera spelaea (Goldfuss) - lived during Middle and Late Pleistocene times on the Eurasian continent, from the British Isles to Chukotka in the extreme east of Russia, and they also roamed Alaska and northwestern Canada. The extinct creatures were close relatives of modern Afro-Asiatic lion.

Finds of  their remains are rare: today's announcement about the existence of the pair is coupled with the confident claim that they are best preserved ever unearthed in the world. 

Yuka


Yukagir mammoth

Along with the two lions, paleontologists will also show other Pleistocene animals preserved by ice in this vast region, the largest and coldest in the Russian Federation. Picture: Academy of Sciences of Yakutia, RGO

Full details will be given at the presentation in November, including the first results of research into the lions.

Previously, only fragments of carcasses, parts of skeletons and individual bones had been found. Until now, in Yakutia, only skulls, some teeth and bones were unearthed which has prevented scientists having more than an approximate image of the extinct creature.

Like other ancient animals, the cave lion became extinct: research on the two cubs could help to explain why they died out around 10,000 years ago, since the animal had few predators, was smaller than herbivores, and was not prone to getting bogged down in swamps, as did woolly mammoths and rhinos. One theory is a decline in deer and cave bears, their prey, caused their demise.  

'The find is sensational, no doubt,' said a source close to the discovery. It is known the remains are free of dangerous infections such as anthrax following initial microbiological analysis, but no other significant details or pictures will be released before the presentation.

For bona fide media wishing to attend, please contact:

Anastasia Koryakina

Tel: +7 924 170 0012

e-mail: anastacia_joy@mail.ru

Dr Albert Protopopov 

Tel: +7 924 660 6395

e-mail: a.protopopov@mail.ru

Comments (54)

" i hope the DNS was preserved so they can possibly clone and bring the species back " - seriously doubt the cave lions were running a server on the internet.

While the cave bear statement seems a little off, it's possible that juveniles did play a small part in an adult cave lion's diet - but we'd need some research paper to show that.
Brian USA, South Carolina
27/10/2015 13:04
15
2
"One theory is a decline in deer and cave bears, their prey, caused their demise." Cave bears the prey of cave lions? Sorry, I'm not buying it. Cave bears were larger and stronger. A cave lion would be quite foolish to try and make cave bears their prey!
Harry, Santa Fe, New Mexico
27/10/2015 09:05
1
7
Humans of that age have been found. In Washington DC, Bernie Sanders, Mitch McConnell, Nancy Pelosi.
Jim Sirman, Hodges, SC, USA
27/10/2015 08:22
46
22
Wayne - In 1991 people found an incredibly well preserved human from about 5000 years ago: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%96tzi
John Abbe, Eugene, OR, USA
27/10/2015 08:14
2
1
These finds are amazing. I hope that the Siberian Times will publish all the findings of the examinations. I am a freelance journalist and would love to see the cubs and take photographs of them - but unfortunately it is too far from here.

For this reason, I hope to read all the fascinating details in your publication.

Thank-you
Steven Lang, Grahamstown, South Africa
27/10/2015 02:57
16
1
i hope the DNS was preserved so they can possibly clone and bring the species back.
Me, va/us
27/10/2015 01:55
9
10
one photo?
Mike, Canada
26/10/2015 23:27
10
0
Not yet, just Bigfoot.
Cave man, New York
26/10/2015 21:30
1
7
Just wondering if any humans of that time have been found frozen.Cheers.
Wayne, Brisbane Australia
26/10/2015 18:17
24
5

Add your comment

We welcome a healthy debate, but do not accept offensive or abusive comments. Please also read 'Siberian Times' Privacy Policy

Name

Town/Country

Add your comments

The views expressed in the comments above are those of our readers. 'Siberian Times' reserves the right to pre-moderate some comments.

Control code*

Type the code

* obligatory


News

Business

The Bank of Russia official exchange rates of foreign currencies
EUR69.65USD59.25GBP76.35Other...