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Mexican paleontologists recover most of mammoth skeleton from Pleistocene era


Paleontologists have managed to recover much of the skeleton of a mammoth discovered last December in the central Mexican municipality of Tultepec, the National Anthropology and History Institute, or INAH, said.

Mexican paleontologists recover most of mammoth skeleton from Pleistocene era
Mexican paleontologists recover most of mammoth skeleton from Pleistocene era
The mammoth skeleton was discovered last December in the central Mexican municipality of Tultepec 
[Credit: Mauricio Marat, INAH]
Paleontologist Luis Cordoba Barradas, who is heading up the recovery effort, said the position of the bones at the site, located in the central state of Mexico, indicates "the specimen may have been partially cut up by a human group," the INAH said in a statement Tuesday.

The arrangement of ribs and other large bones - including the humerus, fibula and femur - and around a dozen vertebra indicates the animal may have become trapped in mud due to its heavy weight and been cut up or ripped apart by humans and other predators, the expert said.

The most notable skeletal pieces recovered to date include "some large pieces whose anatomical relationship has been preserved, including the cranium and the pelvis," the INAH said, adding that subsoil sediments helped preserve most of the bones.

The mammoth was found last December during drainage work in the town of San Antonio Xahuento.

Results of a stratigraphic analysis showed the mammoth lived at the very end of the Pleistocene epoch (between 14,000 and 12,000 years ago).

Source: EFE [May 19, 2016]
TANN

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