If you have seen the movie the day after tomorrow you have heard of the Beresovka Mammoth. It was the mammoth that was supposedly in the Smithsonian,
however all that remains Today is a mammoth replica, which is covered with one third of the original skin and hair of the Beresovka mammoth and is
displayed in St. Petersburg zoological museum. Below you will find a brief outline of the story.
In the early part of this century the famous Beresovka mammoth carcass was discovered in Siberia. Nearly intact, the animal was found buried
in silty gravel sitting in the upright position. The mammoth had a broken foreleg, evidently caused by a fall from a nearby cliff 10,000 years ago.
The remains of its stomach were intact and there were grasses and buttercups lodged between its teeth. The flesh was still edible, but reportedly not
No one has ever satisfactorily explained how the Beresovka mammoth and other animals found frozen in the sub arctic could have been frozen before
being consumed by predators of the time. Some have proposed a sudden change in climate, but this hardly seems a likely explanation. The scientist who
uncovered the Beresovka mammoth conjectured that the animal fell into a snow-filled ravine that protected the body until it was perhaps covered by
gravel during a summer flood.
Here is how scientists have attempted to explain the amazing freezing mammoth.
Theory # 1
Huge herds of mammoths used t roam the tundra feeding off the grasses, reeds, and other plants that still cover the land in summer. Every now and
then one of them would get trapped in ice or would fall to its death down a crevasse in a glacier, there the carcass would freeze and be preserved
almost unchanged forever.
Problems with Theory #1
To begin with the carcasses were found in the wrong places. Vast areas of the Arctic are covered with ice, but most of the tundra is composed of
soil, sand, river silt, and loam bound by frozen water. The frozen mammoths were discovered not in the ice but in the silt layers.
Furthermore, during the relevant period, there were no glaciers in Siberia except in the upper reaches of the mountains where the mammoths did not
The mammoths had fallen into rivers and had been carried downstream to the estuaries, where they were buried in the silt.
Problems with Theory # 2
The mammoths were being found in the tundra between the river valleys and not all could have drowned because many were found standing upright.
To get to the bottom of the mystery scientists consulted experts in the deep freeze butchery industry. However instead of clearing things up they
made them much more troublesome. Basically they said it was not possible to deep freeze a creature the size of a mammoth in the relative moderate
temps of the arctic.
Basically if meat is frozen slowly at freezing temp crystals form in the cells of the flesh bursting the cells and dehydrating the meat. The butchers
concluded no such process could have produced the deep frozen mammoth meat.
To satisfactorily freeze a side of beef takes 30 minutes at -40 degrees Fahrenheit. To deep freeze a huge living warm blooded mammoth, insulated in
thick fur, they estimated that temperatures below -150 degrees would be required. Temperatures so low have never been recorded in nature, not even in
This has simply made all normal theories for the Beresovka mammoth that much more obsolete.
To add to the mystery consider the climate needed for buttercups to grow. Buttercups enjoy temperate conditions with alternation sun and rain
Click here for Buttercup Climate info
These are the unalterable facts a mammoth grazing buttercup in a temperate climate all of the sudden is frozen stiff by unimaginable cold. The
question is how it happened, to this day a feasible explanation has not been put forward.
Strange Stories, Amazing Facts, Readers Digest. 1980
The Beresovka mammoth found in situ
[edit on 15-6-2004 by BlackJackal]