Archaeologists in Serbia have discovered the world's first mammoth graveyard, a field containing the remains of at least five giant beasts who lived here tens of thousands of years ago.
Last week's discovery in the Kostolac coal mine, east of the Serbian capital of Belgrade, is the first of its kind in the region. It could offer important information about the ice age in the balkanssays Miomir Korac of the Archaeological Institute of Serbia.
“There are millions of mammoth fragments in the world, but they are rarely accessible for exploration”He told The Associated Press. "A mammoth field can offer incredible information and shed light on what life was like in these areas during the ice age”.
The remains were found during a coal dig 20 meters underground. Korac says the field occupies about eight hectares of sandy ground.
In 2009, a mammoth skeleton was found much older well preserved in the same place. Vika, as the female's skeleton was named, dates back a million years ago and belonged to the hairless, also called southern mammoths.
The bones discovered last month probably belonged to the so-called woolly mammoths, which disappeared about 10,000 years ago, says Sanja Alaburic, a mammoth expert at the Natural History Museum of Serbia.
Alaburic explains that “the discovery is interesting because, unusually, there are many bones in one place”, Probably dragged by the Torrential rains.
Korac and Serbian archaeologists have already contacted colleagues from France and Germany to consult them. Says they are needed at least six months of work Before the bones are dug up
Another mammoth skeleton it was discovered north of Serbia in 1996. It belonged to a female mammoth that lived about 500,000 years ago and it is currently exhibited in the town of Kikinda, near the Hungarian border.
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