Fossil mammoth excavation

Fossil mammoth excavation

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This image is part of the feature The Truth Behind Mythical Monsters

Credit: SPUTNIK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Mammoth excavation. Palaeontologists standing with the partially unearthed fossil of a woolly mammoth (Mammuthus primigenius). The front section of the skull is at centre. The woolly mammoth was a large, elephant-like mammal with a thick, hairy coat. It lived on the steppes of Siberia and in much of Europe up until about 10,000 years ago. Woolly mammoths died out as Eurasia warmed up at the end of the last ice age, and forests spread across the steppes. The arrival of human hunters may also have hastened their extinction. Photographed in Siberia, Russia.

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