In this image made from video, scientists examine the remains of a horse in Yakutia, Russia, Thursday, Aug. 23, 2018. Russian scientists have found that the carcass of an old foal perfectly preserved in the Siberian permafrost. The fossil, discovered in the region of Yakutia has her skin, hair, hooves, and tail preserved. Scientists from Russia in the Northeastern Federal University said Thursday that the foal is estimated to be 30,000 to 40,000 years old. (AP photo)
Scientists are analyzing the perfectly preserved remains of a prehistoric horse in an attempt to clone the now extinct animal.
Recently discovered in the permafrost in the Siberian region of Yakutia, the skin, hair, hooves, and tail of the carcass are all preserved. The remains are estimated to be 30,000 to 40,000 years old. Experts are of the opinion that the colt is about two months old when he died.
Semyon Grigoryev, head of the Mammoth Museum in the regional capital of Yakutsk, was surprised by the perfect condition of the find. He noted it is the best-preserved old foal found to date. The Siberian Times reports that the foal is an extinct species of horse known as Lena horse, or Equus lenensis.
CAN THE LONG EXTINCT WOOLLY MAMMOTH BE CLONED?
Russian and South Korean scientists are now working to extract cells of the foal that can be used for the cloning of the animal, according to the Siberian Times. If an embryo is successfully cloned, a modern horse could be used as a surrogate, say the experts.
In this image made from video, scientists examine the foal carcass. (AP photo)
The foal was discovered in the Batagaika crater, a massive 328-meter-deep depression in the Eastern-Siberian taiga. The giant crater is locally known as the “gateway to the underworld.”
Other remarkable finds were made in Siberia. In 2013, 40,000 year old wooly mammoth carcass was excavated at a distance Maly Lyakhovsky Island in Northern Siberia. The well-preserved remains, in combination with the developments in genetic research, fueled debate about whether the extinct creature could be cloned.
FROZEN MAMMOTH, FOUND IN SIBERIA COULD BE OF A NEW SPECIES, RESEARCHERS SAY
While the possibility of a woolly mammoth “de-extinction” has led to many of the headlines in the past few years, critics have argued that scientific resources would be better allocated to the protection of existing species.
Earlier this year, a petrified “pygmy” wooly mammoth was discovered in Siberia Kotelny Island, which experts say may be a new species.
In 2015, the well-preserved remains of long extinct cave lion cubs were also found in Siberia. The discovery was the first time that the man had eyes on the species in more than 10,000 years old.
EXTREMELY RARE WOOLLY MAMMOTH BONE FOUND ON THE BEACH
In 2012, there is an almost complete skeleton of a woolly mammoth was found in France, to the great delight of the archaeologists.
Fox News’ Chris Ciaccia, Walt Bonner and The Associated Press contributed to this article.
Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers