Mastodon fossil found in Colombian gold mine.

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Gold miners working a tunnel close to the city of Quinchia, in Risaralda province, got here throughout what they quickly realized had been bones on Tuesday.

The invention is the primary of its variety within the province however mastodon stays have additionally been present in Cundinamarca and Valle del Cauca provinces, in addition to alongside Colombia’s Atlantic coast, mentioned Carlos Lopez, an anthropologist at a college in Risaralda’s capital Pereira.

“These animals appeal to consideration resulting from their massive dimension – an enormous bone would not go unnoticed,” Lopez mentioned. “It actually takes us in a time machine … to consider what they had been like and the way they lived, and if people lived alongside them.”

Specialists research the mastodon stays and take away these nonetheless contained in the mine, the place a whole tusk measuring 1 meter 10 centimeters (3.5 ft) lengthy can nonetheless be seen.

“They despatched us some images, which we despatched to knowledgeable anthropologists within the space and so they decided they belonged to megafauna … that died out between 2 million and 10,000 years in the past,” mentioned Julio Gomez, director of the regional environmental authority for Risaralda.

The invention may herald comparable finds within the area.

“Extra (stays) might be discovered,” Lopez mentioned. “These animals lived in herds, they did not dwell alone, somewhat just like the herds of elephants we see in Africa right this moment.”

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