• Tufan Akbay

Mummified Woolly Mammoth Found by Canadian Miners

Miners working in the Klondike gold deposit on Eureka Creek in Canada have unearthed a mummified woolly mammoth frozen in its entirety.

Upon quick examination, it appears to be a female and roughly the same size as the 42,000-year-old baby woolly mammoth "Lyuba" found in Siberia in 2007.

The mammoth is a very important discovery for Tr'ondëkHwëch and the Yukon Government. The Elders of Tr'ondëkHwëchnamed the baby mammoth Nun choga, meaning "big baby animal" in Han. Geologists from the Jukon Geological Survey and the University of Calgary who excavated the frozen mammoth from the site suggest that Nun choga died in the ice age, which was more than 30,000 years old, and died in frozen soil.

The discovered ice age remains provide an extremely detailed look at when Nun choga roamed the Yukon alongside wild horses, cave lions and giant steppe bison.

The discovery of Nun choga marks it as the best-preserved and almost completely mummified first woolly mammoth found in North America. A partial mammoth cub named Effie was found in a gold mine in the interior of Alaska in 1948.

The Yukon region is world-renowned for its fossil record of ice age animals. But mummified remains, along with their skin and hair, are rarely found. The baby mammoth, called Nun choga, was the most complete mummified mammoth ever found in North America.

In the coming months, Tr'ondëkHwëchand the Yukon Government will work together to respectfully protect and learn more about Nun choga and share these stories with the global scientific community.

Photos: Arkeofili