We have often seen palaeontologists and archaeologists on the Discovery channel working on the excavation sites of extinct animals brushing and cleaning their remnants. Coming across fossils of various long-dead animals, birds and other creatures is quite usual for the archaeologists. However, what takes them by surprise is the fact, that at times these remnants are extremely well preserved by the nature.
Some of these extremely well preserved remnants of extinct animals are:
Yuka Woolly Mammoth
Researchers have although come across a number of well-preserved fossils of woolly mammoths, however, they say that Yuka is till date the most amazingly preserved fossil. The remnants were found accidently in 2010 in Siberia?s distant region Yakutia and are of a baby woolly mammoth that is 1.8 meter long. Yuka?s corpse is said to be around 39,000 years old and is so well-kept by nature that it?s the first woolly mammoth found with blood vessels and folds in brain fully intact.
Dinosaurs Feathers in Amber
Some Canadian palaeontologists discovered feathers and other unseen structures when they dug up the amber collection in a museum. They hunted through an array of microscopic amber pieces dating to at least 80 million years back and found 11 M&M sized bubbles having traces of prehistoric fuzz and feathers. A lot of them resembled modern feathers related to flying, while others related to diving.
The palaeontologists even found that the amber nuggets had preserved the colours of the feathers like grey, red, white and brown. This discovery has resulted in revealing a lot in terms of key evolutionary stages in feather development from the ancient non-avian birds and dinosaurs.
Dinosaur with Rhino look
Remnants of baby Chasmosaurus belli were discovered in 2015 in Alberta, Canada assumed to be only 3 years old and 5 metres long. The fossil of the dinosaur dates back to 75 million years and the surprising fact is that through all these years the body is completely whole.
The fossils of this juvenile predator were so aptly preserved that its skin had imprints on the rocks beneath it. The researchers say that it is quite rare to find a baby dinosaur which is not torn apart or eaten in any way.
Archelon Ischyros- A Sea Turtle
Archelon is a type of sea turtle, the largest of all ever known and the second largest after Stupendemys. These were slow moving turtles which rarely dived deep except when wanting to hibernate on the seabed.?
The first fossil was found in 1895 by Dr G.R. Wieland that dated to around 80.5 million years back. The estimated weight of this Archelon was more than 2200kgs and could swim for long distances considering that they had huge flippers.
Trilobites are fossils of extinct marine arthropods and making their first appearance some 521 million years ago in the early Cambrian period. Trilobites remnants have been found across all the continents with some of the them preserved with body parts like gills and antennae still soft.
They, however, disappeared 250 million years ago in the Permian period?s mass extinction. The fossils of Walliserops is a 5 inch trilobite that is said to have swam through Devonian seas now Morocco around 150 million years back i.e. even before the hatching of first dinosaur.
Cave Lion Cubs
Yakutia seems to be a hub for animal fossils as a pair of cave lion cubs dating some 10,000 years back was also discovered in this region. The cubs named Uyan and Dina were not even a week old at the time of their death.
Researchers believe the reason of their death could be a landslide trapping them in their den and with no scope for air their bodies were well preserved. Although the palaeontologists discovered Panthera spelaean in 1810, but they only had animal tracks and bones. These two cubs in turn are the best fossil so far with not just their organs but also their fur still undamaged.
The Claws of Therizinosaurus
Therizinosaurus was a type of huge sized theropod dinosaur. The first fossils of this species were found in Mongolia in 1948. The researchers originally thought the fossil to be of one of the turtle-like reptiles.
These dinosaurs are believed to have small skulls but deep, heavy, and broad bodies. Their forelimbs reached upto 2.5 meters or even 3.5 metres in length with the most fascinating and scary feature being their gigantic claws. The claws on the discovered fossil reached upto 1 metre in length.
It is intriguing surely to read about the extinct animals but equally scary to think of the consequences if they would have been alive today.