Woolly mammoth exhibition coming to Taipei this year

Staff writer, with CNA

Tue, Sep 17, 2013 - Page 4

A woolly mammoth that died and was frozen in permafrost 39,000 years ago will be displayed at an exhibition in Taipei in November.

The mammoth, nicknamed Yuka, was discovered off the coast of Russia’s Sakha Republic in Siberia in 2010 and is considered one of the most well-

preserved mammoth specimens to date.

Yuka is currently being exhibited in Yokohama, Japan, where it was first displayed to the public, drawing hundreds of thousands of visitors.

The female mammoth is estimated to have died at the age of 10 and its skin, trunk, tail and four legs remain in good condition, according to Media Sphere Communications, one of the organizers of the Taipei exhibition.

“We suppose that the mammoth fell into water or got bogged down in a swamp, could not free herself and died. Due to this fact, the lower part of the body, including the lower jaw and tongue tissue, was preserved very well,” Semyon Grigoriev, head of the expedition that discovered the remains, told the Siberian Times in May.

However, Discovery News reports that Yuka was a two-and-a-half year-old juvenile when it died, perhaps at the hands of humans.

The scientists were also able to obtain blood and muscle tissue from the mammoth for further studies.

Among the more than 200 items to be showcased at the exhibition, would be a prehistoric wooly rhinoceros called Kolyma and the skeletons of antelopes, bison and saber-tooth cats from the Pleistocene era, which lasted until the end of the last great ice age around 12,000 years ago, the organizers said.

The exhibition will run from Nov. 16 to March 2 next year at the National Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall.

Additional reporting by staff writer