Man Bags $30,000 for Scavenged Mammoth

May 29, 2009 at 10:25 am | Posted in Finds | Leave a comment

mammothStrolling beside the Khroma River in the Siberian republic of Yakutia recently, Igor Lebedev noticed something sticking slightly out of the ground. Further inspection revealed it to be a baby mammoth that had been preserved in the permafrost before the river partly bared it, according to MosNews:

“Specialists of the Republican Mammoth Museum studied the find and alleged it to be a young mammoth corpse some 15,000-30,000 years old. The animal, who died at about two years of age, had its head, legs and some intestines well-preserved in the cold climate.”

The article goes on to say that in exchange for handing over his find, Lebedev “will now receive a reward of 1 million rubles,” which amounts to around US $30,000. Authorities are publicizing the reward, which was announced on Wednesday, in order “to avert mammoth corpses being sold on the black market rather than being given for research….

“In the past few years, mammoths have regularly been found in Russia. In 2004, the corpse of a one-year-old mammoth was found in Yakutia; in 2007, an extremely well-preserved six-month-old female was found in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Area.” It is unknown how many have been scavenged and sold on the black market.

(The photo above, which accompanies the MosNews report, is from

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