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Tooth of 16,000-year-old cave lion discovered in France's Puy-de-Dôme


A cave lion's tooth has been discovered by archaeologists near Vic-le-Comte (Puy-de-Dôme), on a site that has been excavated for two years.

Tooth of 16,000-year-old cave lion discovered in France's Puy-de-Dôme
The cave lion disappeared about 10,000 years ago, at the end of the last Ice Age
[Credit: WikiCommons/Sehmur]
The tooth measures about 4 centimetres and is believed to date back 16,000 years. Several objects from the same period have already been found at the site.

The cave lion is close to the African lion. Males could weigh up to 300 kg. These animals disappeared about 10,000 years ago, at the end of the last Ice Age.

Tooth of 16,000-year-old cave lion discovered in France's Puy-de-Dôme
The cave lion's tooth is believed to be 16,000 years old [Credit: La Montagne]
This discovery is a real surprise for Frédéric Surmely, heritage curator at the regional archaeology department of the Drac: "In 25 years of career and excavations, it is the first time that I have made such a discovery in Auvergne. There have been no others to my knowledge."

However, he believes that "it is not surprising" to find the prehistoric animal in Auvergne: "What is surprising is the level at which it was found. At that point, global warming was already underway and the cave lion was in decline."

This is not the first time that archaeologists have made a significant discovery in the area. In 2009, they had already found a mammoth molar just 150 metres from the lion's tooth.

Source: Ouest-France [July 05, 2018]

TANN

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