Although they lived more than 20,000 years ago, some organs of a woolly rhinoceros are still intact, and the degree of conservation has impressed scientists.
It is believed that the animal, which was found by a resident of Eastern Siberia, lived in the Ice Age.
The carcass emerged in the Yakutia region of northeast Russia after the permafrost melted – the layer of soil permanently frozen in very cold areas.
Experts will deliver the rhinoceros to a laboratory in the city of Yakutsk to learn more about the findings.
There, scientists will take samples and perform radiocarbon analyzes.
It is estimated that the rhinoceros lived during the Pleistocene, it was geological 1.8 million to 10,000 years ago.
Valery Plotnikov, a scientist who examined the remains, told the Russian media that the rhinoceros was between three and four years old when it died, likely from the effects of drowning.
She added that most of the animal’s organs and soft tissues remained intact, including the intestines and genitals.
“A small horn has also been preserved. This is a rarity because this structure breaks down quickly,” Plotnikov told Russian television Yakutia 24 TV.
Preliminary analysis shows the horn is showing signs of use, suggesting the rhino “used it for feeding,” he said.
How did the carcass appear?
The rhinoceros was discovered by a resident on the banks of the Tirekhtyakh River in August.
The finding took place in a region where another woolly rhinoceros was found in 2014.
At the time, that other specimen was called Sasha. He is said to have lived 34,000 years ago.
In recent years, significant remains of mammoths, woolly rhinos, horses and cave lion cubs have been discovered in parts of Siberia.
In September last year, researchers found the well-preserved carcass of an ice age bear on the Lyakhovsky Islands in northeastern Russia.
Such discoveries are becoming more common as global warming melts permafrost in much of the northern and eastern ends of Russia.