Fossilized Mammoth Shows Ancient Humans came in Arctic at least 45,000 years ago

Fossilized Mammoth Shows Ancient Humans came in Arctic at least 45,000 years ago

On analyzing the remains of the frozen carcass of a male woolly mammoth found in Siberia, Russian scientists suggest that the findings provide evidence that people inhabited Arctic regions thousands of years earlier than previously known. The male mammoth was excavated from a bluff on Yenisei Bay on the Arctic Ocean in 2012 that was killed by hunters 45,000 years ago, providing the earliest indication of the presence of humans in the Arctic. Damage to its ribs appears to have been caused by spears thrown by hunters, while shoulder-blade and cheekbone injuries probably came from hand-held thrusting spears. Ann Gibbons, contributing correspondent for the journal Science, which published an analysis of the frozen mammoth, said the fossil showed it had been bettered and shot by humans mad the finding super-important.

Vladimir Pitulko, senior research scientist at the Russian Academy of Sciences' Institute for the History of Material Culture in St. Petersburg, till now the oldest evidence of humans in Arctic regions date back to more or less 30,000 years ago. He added that people who endured the harsh Arctic conditions likely lived a hunter-gatherer lifestyle and provides an endless source of different goods: food with meat, fat and marrow; fuel with dung, fat and bones; and raw material with long bones and ivory. “They certainly would use them as food, especially certain parts like tongue or liver as a delicacy, but hunting for the ivory was more important”.

Despite of the harm that led to the death of the woolly mammoth, scientists think mammoth-hunting may have been a critical factor in enabling people to survive in the Arctic and trek across northernmost Siberia. The first humans to reach the New World crossed that land bridge which later on spread through the Americas. Pitulko said that the fact that humans populated Arctic regions sooner than previously known suggests the possibility that people also crossed the Bering land bridge earlier than currently suspected.

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