For the second time in history, a newborn woolly mammoth has been unearthed.
The find, unearthed by gold miners in Canada’s Yukon region, is North America’s first of its kind.
A female baby mammoth’s mummified body was discovered on Tr’ondek Hwech’in First Nation lands.
This is an amazing find for paleontologists as well as this First Nation.
A miner spotted the newborn mammoth while digging through mud with a front loader.
He had an insight and came to a complete stop, summoning his supervisor.
When his boss, Brian McCaughan of Treadstone Mining, learned what he had done, he immediately paused the process and sought the necessary specialists.
Dr. Grant Zazula, the Yukon government’s paleontologist, would never forget that day.
“Seeing a real woolly mammoth has been one of my career aspirations as an ice period paleontologist.”
“That dream came true today,” he remarked.
Several woolly mammoths have been discovered in North America, but none have been preserved as well as the one discovered in Yukon.
Nun cho ga, which translates as “big baby animal” in the Tr’ondek Hwech’in Hän language, is about the same size as the baby mammoth Lyuba found in Siberia in 2007.
The scientists from the Yukon Geological Survey and the University of Calgary who discovered the frozen mammoth say she is at least 30,000 years old.
The grass discovered in Nun cho ga’s stomach might show how she died.
Dr. Zazula speculates that Nun cho ga, who was only 30 to 35 days old, may have wandered away from her mother while munching on some grass and been caught in the muck.
“And that thing happened extremely quickly, from becoming stuck in the mud until burial,” he stated.
Regardless of how she died, Nun cho ga is being lauded for her rediscovery.
A group of Tr’ondek Hwech’in elders discovered her at the mining site and brought her to a special blessing rite.
The corpse was gradually shown to the group of scientists, miners, and local officials, shrouded in a tarp.
“It stole my breath away when they lifted the covering,” stated Tr’ondk Hwch’in Elder Peggy Kormendy.
“Everyone must handle it with decency.”
When it happens, it will be strong, and we will heal as a result.
We must as a people.”
In the following months, the Yukon Government and the Tr’ondk Hwch’in will work together to learn more about Nun cho ga.
A miner in Yukon was working when his equipment unearthed an incredible find: a juvenile woolly mammoth.