Giant Pleistocene wolf head discovered in Siberia with impressive fangs still snarling after 40,000 years

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

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, snarling…

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Giant wolf from Pleistocene discovered in Siberia. Photo by Albert Protopopov via The Siberian Times

Here another sensational find from Siberia: The first ever remains of a fully grown Pleistocene wolf with its tissue 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: 

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

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. A true giant!

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

A lion cub too

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

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

Another amazing and exciting find from Siberia!

[The Siberian Times]

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