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'The Yenisey began life with a groan and ended with a boldness we could never dream of'
A.P. Chekhov, 1890

Still snarling after 40,000 years, a giant Pleistocene wolf discovered in Yakutia

By The Siberian Times reporter
07 June 2019

Sensational find of head of the beast with its brain intact, preserved since prehistoric times in permafrost.

The Pleistocene wolf’s head is 40cm long, so half of the whole body length of a modern wolf which varies from 66 to 86cm. Picture: Albert Protopopov

The severed head of the world’s first full-sized Pleistocene wolf was unearthed in the Abyisky district in the north of Yakutia. 

Local man Pavel Efimov found it in summer 2018 on shore of the Tirekhtyakh River, tributary of Indigirka.

The wolf, whose rich mammoth-like fur and impressive fangs are still intact, was fully grown and aged from two to four years old when it died. 

Pleistocene wolf

The wolf, whose rich mammoth-like fur and impressive fangs are still intact, was fully grown and aged from two to four years old when it died. Picture: Albert Protopopov

The head was dated older than 40,000 years by Japanese scientists.

Scientists at the Swedish Museum of Natural History will examine the Pleistocene predator’s DNA.

‘This is a unique discovery of the first ever remains of a fully grown Pleistocene wolf with its tissue preserved. We will be comparing it to modern-day wolves to understand how the species has evolved and to reconstruct its appearance,’ said an excited Albert Protopopov, from the Republic of Sakha Academy of Sciences. 

Map

Local man Pavel Efimov found it in summer 2018 on shore of the Tirekhtyakh River, tributary of Indigirka.

The Pleistocene wolf’s head is 40cm long, so half of the whole body length of a modern wolf which varies from 66 to 86cm. 

The astonishing discovery was announced in Tokyo, Japan, during the opening of a grandiose Woolly Mammoth exhibition organised by Yakutian and Japanese scientists. 

CT scan


CT scan


CT scan

CT scan of the wolf's head. Pictures: Albert Protopopov, Naoki Suzuki

Alongside the wolf the scientists presented an immaculately-well preserved cave lion cub. 

‘Their muscles, organs and brains are in good condition,’ said Naoki Suzuki, a professor of palaeontology and medicine with the Jikei University School of Medicine in Tokyo, who studied the remains with a CT scanner. 

‘We want to assess their physical capabilities and ecology by comparing them with the lions and wolves of today.’

Pleistocene wolf


Pleistocene wolf

‘This is a unique discovery of the first ever remains of a fully grown Pleistocene wolf with its tissue preserved.' Pictures: Naoki Suzuki

The cave lion cub named Spartak - previously announced - is about 40cm long and weighed about 800 grams. 

Scientists believe the cub died shortly after birth. 

The recent discovery follows that of the remains of three cave lions in 2015 and 2017 by the same team.

The cave lion cub named Spartak - previously announced - is about 40cm long and weighed about 800 grams. Pictures: The Siberian Times, YSIA

Spartak


Spartak


Research


Frozen cave lion cub

Comments (143)

Only in Russia...and only in Siberia. Very nice!
Michel S., France
12/06/2019 22:54
2
2
To je něco.
Arno, Чешская Республика
12/06/2019 18:38
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0
Incredible find...la natura ci sorprende sempre!
Chiara Parisi, Italia
12/06/2019 16:12
7
5
I just read a comment by Scott Z from the USA. They don't raise them too bright in America, ey, mate? Evolution is a lie? Ha ha ha Better go read your bible then, since your lack of reality really shows. You must LOVE that Donald Trump. We hear he is a real lunatic. Please keep him there. We do not want whackos like him in SOUTH AFRICA!
Fruitty, South Africa
12/06/2019 12:58
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How did it taste? Mmmmm Yummy!
Fruitty, South Africa
12/06/2019 12:55
2
12
Do you know how much plastic they found in the ocean? Did you see the island that the beach is nothing but bits and chunks of broken tooth brushes and miles of micro plastic? Did you see when they capture animals and find used bottles in their stomach? Did you not see the Red Water in Florida? How about the thousands of fish that beach themselves, and are dieing all over? All this chemicals, they dump it in the water. The ice is melting. Do some research, the top scientists say humanity will end before 2049. In 30 years, that is less then my age. How about you? Do you know any kids? They are not going to live to your age. Please - stop saying Climate change is not real. WAKE UP - The rain-forest? Look at the animal and insect populations. How many Bees have died? Did you see hurricane Michael? They are still dealing with the damage. What about all these facts, who really believes this is natural? Open your eyes
Ceasar, America
12/06/2019 12:31
25
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It doesn't take a scientist to realize that all the pollutants and gases we are constantly spewing into the air IS altering the atmosphere , Oceans and which are planetary heating. Earth has never done this , this quickly, (IT) does not work that way. Only fools refuse to understand it or try.
Don Clark, United States
12/06/2019 09:50
35
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For the climate change deniers out there, you’re either funded or fooled by conservative billionaires: https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/meet-the-money-behind-the-climate-denial-movement-180948204/
Kimberly, California
12/06/2019 05:00
24
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The religious nut doesn't fall far from the religious tree. Creationist are insane. As far as climate change and global warming; Humans account for 3% of the carbon sent into the atmosphere. The other 97% comes from organic decay, volcanoes and forest fires. Climate change is a natural process that follows the solar cycle. Global warming caused by man is a complete hoax backed by pseudoscience and cherry picking of data. Humans who live such finite lives judge the health of the planet by their observation of decades or hundreds of years of climate change, out of 4.6 billion years of existence. It's complete and utter nonsense. Fear, born out of constant worry. All day long, every minute of the day, worried... about everything! That is the cause of the "global warming" insanity.
Michael Dale Sipes, Jr., USA
12/06/2019 04:22
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The Pleistocene wolf’s head is 40cm long, so half of the whole body length of a modern wolf which varies from 66 to 86cm.

That is really impressive. We have a wolf sanctuary near where I live so I’ve gotten to see a modern wolf up close. Having just the head be almost half the body length is just enormous.
Mike Kennedy, USA
12/06/2019 03:29
16
2
Aaron. I respectfully suggest that you learn to spell, punctuate and refrain from using run on sentences before you step into an argument as to whether some Americans are limited.
JD, Seattle
12/06/2019 02:39
14
7
Global Warming is a natural occurrence and no one is going to tell me any different!

I'm sure humans are quickening the process with the help of man made chemicals put in the air the soil and oceans..........Brain washing is a great form of conspiracy which is rife throughout the world via media everything is put out there for us all to believe because that's just another way of controlling the plebs of every country.. ....Viva La Freedom to Thoughts and Speech! ✌
NotBrainwashed, NZ
11/06/2019 19:31
28
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Hopefully they have a conservator working with them. As soon as the remains were removed from the permafrost they began to decay. If they are not properly handled and environmentally conserved their future preservation is at risk.
JL, NM, USA
11/06/2019 17:26
15
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Il y a beaucoup de ressemblance avec la tête de l' ours surtout les photos prises en latéral;..
Lucien Bilodeau, Kébec,..
11/06/2019 09:05
5
2
And KEITH- Yeah, it's cows Farting, and the sun (which is about 5 billion years old) suddenly changing in the last 100 years (which is nothing in the scheme of things) - YEP-THAT'S what's causing climate change.



Not human pollution, and the tons of plastic in the sea.



Der!
Jason, Brighton, England
11/06/2019 07:48
28
11

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