Examining Yuka wooly mammoth baby, ancient bison & horse in Yakutsk, Siberia / Russia [pictures]

Russia’s Republic of Sakha-Yakutia is pretty proud of being the land, where mammoths could be found nearly every year.

Recently, the Yukagir community area in Yakutia’s Arctic zone has brought many valuable findings for the world of paleontology. Eight years ago, it was the intacted Yukagir mammoth head and foot. They were shown at 2005 World Expo in Japan. A few years ago, there was already an ancient horse remains found. Read the related post with photographs.

Last year was prominent with two events. In August, the well-preserved corpse of an ancient bison was discovered at the same place in permafrost. In Novermber, the wooly mammoth baby nicknamed Yuka was delivered on snowmobiles from the Yukagir area, Russia’s Arctic Siberia, to Yakutsk. A story is here.

And… today… thanks to the Academy of Science of the Republic of Sakha-Yakutia… I had an unique chance to photograph how Russian and international scientists had been conducting examination on palentological findings — the Yuka wooly mammoth baby, ancient bison and horse — in Yakutsk, Russia’s Siberia, precisely at Institute of Geology of Diamonds and Precious Metals, Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Science.

Take a look at photos and learn more about the Yuka wooly mammoth baby discovered in Russia’s Siberia, and the event.

Click thumbnails to see big images.


History of the Yuka finding: In August 2010, almost complete carcass of a wooly mammoth was discovered by members of Yukagir community on the Laptevs sea shore at Oyogossky Yar location near the Kondratievo River mouth, Yakutia, Russia’s Siberia. The wooly mammoth carcass and its bones found separately nearby were transported to the Yukagir community ice-house and kept there till November 2011, when it was transported to the city of Yakutsk.

Description of the Siberian wooly mammoth baby, Yuka:

The mammoth carcass with fore and hind legs is well preserved, covered with reddish hair, 35-40 cm long. The carcass length from the trunk base to the tail base makes 177 cm.

The head skin is considerably deformed and its area is considerably smaller than usual due to absence of the skull and lower jaw. There are external auricles, 17 cm long.

The trunk is preserved completely. It is 102 cm long, which makes it the longest one among the previously found baby mammoths.

The back from the neck base to the mid-chest has undamaged skin. The abdominal part lacks most of the ribs, vertebrae, pelvis and viscera. There is a cross diagonal rupture, 40cm long, in the area of lumber vertebrae. The rupture edges are mainly smooth. The rupture is 10.5 cm wide in the middle and becomes narrower at the ends. Through this rupture, most likely, somebody, maybe a paleolithic man, took off all the vertebrae, most ribs, haunch bone with sacrum, left shoulder-blade and viscera.

The visible part of the tail is 8 cm.

The skull nasal bones are absent, they are broken at the base. There is the upper jaw with teeth preserved. The fourth milk tooth has about 7-8 plates, which assumes that the Siberian wooly mammoth calf was about 3-4 years old. The lower jaw is well preserved.

The haunch bone is covered with tendons and fragments of muscle tissue, and so is the left shoulder-blade. The bone is undamaged.

Remains in the intestines are much mummified, destructed, and dark-gray in colour.

The people who discovered the wooly mammoth also found 9 ribs near the carcass, with their fragments likely being inside the skeleton.

Conclusion: Judging from the dental system, the age of the Siberian wooly mammoth is estimated at 3-4 years. Sexual characters indicate that it is a female. Undoubtedly, remains of Yuka wooly mammoth calf are of great scientific and museum value.


The paleontological examination was done within the International Seminar on Research of Paleontological Objects (a young wooly mammoth named Yuka, an ancient bison and an ancient horse carcasses) hosted by the Academy of Sciences of the Sakha Republic (Yakutia) from 27 February to 3 March 2012.

Host: Academy of Sciences of the Sakha Republic (Yakutia)

Seminar partners:

— International Mammoth Committee
— Research Institute of Applied Ecology, North-Eastern Federal University
— Institute of Geology of Diamonds and Precious Metals, Siberian Branch, RAS
— Yukagir community

Participants: Leading researchers from Russia, France, Japan, the USA.


Evgeny MASHENKO, Institute of Paleonthology, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow
Alexei TIKHONOV, Institute of Zoology, RAS, St.Petersburg
Sergei GORBUNOV, International Mammoth Committee, Moscow
Bernard BUIGUES, International Mammoth Committee, France
Daniel FISHER, University of Michigan, USA
Hiromi KATO, University of Kinki, Japan


Opening of the seminar, 27 February:
09.00 – 10.00 – Registration of participants and guests of the seminar
10.00 – 12.30 – Opening of the seminar. Plenary session
12.30 – 12.45 — Briefing by Dr. Hiromi Kato (University of Kinki, Japan), the geneticist, member of the mammoth resurrection group
16:00 – 16:15 – taking pictures and video of Yuka wooly mammoth examination by mass-media

Closing of the seminar is on 2 March, Friday:
15.00 -18.00 — Closing session. Summing up the preliminary research stage. Round table — discussion of the research plan. Press conference.

Venue: Academy of Sciences of the Sakha Republic (Yakutia), Lenin Avenue, 33, 2 Floor, the Oval Hall

For more info, please, contact:

Larisa Nikolaevna Semenova
PR and Mass Media Department
mob. +79245916354

PS. Saying a lot of thanks to Albert Protopopov, Mammoth Committee at the Academy of Science of the Republic of Sakha-Yakutia for giving me such a rare chance.


Currently, the following photographs are available only for free download.

Credit to mention: Bolot Bochkarev, eYakutia.com.
Quantity: 6 items.
Size: 3872 x 2592, 300 dpi.
File Size: ~23,95 Mb.
Download Link: http://eyakutia.com/wp-content/gallery/yuka/yukamammothbaby_enbtornb.zip.

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