There Are unicorns really?
Censatsionnye data released modern scientists: it turns out, unicorns, so familiar to us in fairy tales and science fiction films, not only existed in the world, but could easily catch the primitive people. It's unbelievable, but the age of the remains of the so-called Siberian unicorn, found on the territory of Russia, according to recent data, it points to the fact that he lived here in the days when this region had already settled the first people.
It is not cute horse
Unicorn as a mythical character used a variety of peoples of the world for millennia. However, the image of an elegant horse with a horn, which we are accustomed, has appeared in more recent times, as the ancient "artists" painted it more often in the form of one-horned ox or antelope. Images of bulls with a horn on his forehead are found, for example, on seals found during excavations of ancient cities in the Indus valley, and about relating to the III millennium BC. Several thousand years ago in Assyria, Egypt and South Africa, the ancient artists often painted with one horn is not bulls and antelopes. And in the Middle East in ancient times, people recounted to each other legends about horned ass ...
In the Middle Ages, the image of a horse with one horn superseded all others, and Europe (including Russia and) gradually settled it is the perception of this mythical animal.
However, subsequent discoveries scientists have made adjustments to the image. Yes, unicorns really existed on Earth. However, it was not a horse, but a very negratsioznye, massive creatures.
Their existence proved
For the first time this animal bones were discovered in 1900 in Siberia, and this discovery has caused a shock among scientists. As established by paleontologists, the ancient creature called the scientists' elasmoterium sibirikum "(elasmotherium sibiricum), had a large broad skull with a single horn. And then it became known to science and other similar findings.
1914. Reconstruction IA Dubrovo and VD Kolganova, Moscow Paleontological Museum. Yuri Orlov. /Foto:old.evolbiol.ru
Bones of ancient unicorns were studied at the turn of XIX-XX centuries and became more detailed study in recent years. Siberian elasmoteriumy allegedly were herbivores, and the aura of their habitat covers a fairly large area - Eastern Europe, Western Siberia, as well as part of the modern Mongolia, Kazakhstan and China.
The image of the ancient unicorn, found in a cave Shulgan-Tash (Kapova), 1965. /Foto:old.evolbiol.ru
The sizes of these prehistoric animals are impressive: their body length reached five meters, and height - two and a half. The diameter of its horn was about 20 cm, length - 2 meters. giant unicorn body was covered with hair, which is typical for animals living in colder regions of the planet in the Pleistocene epoch (such as mammoths and woolly rhinoceroses).
Siberian unicorn skull in comparison with the man. Paleohudozhnik Roman Teacher
14 years ago a group of Russian archaeologists discovered in the Southern Urals, in the cave, many ancient bones and teeth of impressive dimensions. All findings were placed in a single layer. And if the bones, the researchers found out under the supervision of a paleontologist Paul Kosintzeva belonged hyenas, mammoths, bison and horses, the tooth - it is the Siberian unicorn. Similar teeth in the last century were found on the territory of Bashkortostan.
Tooth unicorn became a clue to the existence of these animals.
Later, a fragment of the tooth and the other remains unicorns taken from private collections, was sent to Holland to study the method of radiocarbon accelerator mass spectrometry. This is the modern way of determining the date of artifacts all the modern archaeologists began to use more often, because at the moment it is the most accurate. The results exceeded all expectations of scientists: it turns out, the giant unicorn, which belonged to the tooth, lived in what is now the Urals about 35 thousand years ago. And since, as scientists know, at this time in the Urals have lived people, it allows you to make a bold assumption that the prototype of mythical creatures and prehistoric man could live in the same years.
Siberian unicorn. Modern reconstruction.
These data confirmed Oxford Scientific Research Laboratories, conducted by high performance liquid chromatography.
By the way, the Australian scientists were able to isolate DNA of ancient unicorn and make no less interesting conclusion. According to them, the closest relatives of the giant tapirs can be called. But modern rhinos have a very distant relationship unicorns: elasmoterium sibirikum "broke away" from them and began to evolve separately 50 million years ago.. But until now scientists Siberian unicorn confidently called "extinct species of rhinoceros."
The reason for the disappearance of
Why extinct Siberian unicorns? Researchers have on this subject a few assumptions, but most likely due to the diet. Analysis of bone structure showed that their main meal was just grass - like a prehistoric mowers, unicorns devoured it in large quantities. However, the meadows on the territory of their habitat gradually began to fade and go on food foliage and branches of shrubs, they, unlike other herbivores, have failed. Well, the reason for the disappearance of vast pastures could serve as global warming and the earth out of the Ice Age.
Another alleged cause of extinction of unicorns can be called what they in large numbers killed our ancestors hunters. However, it is among the remains of these animals was seen signs that at least one person killed the unicorn. Professor of the London Natural History Museum Adrian Lister, one of the leading experts in ancient Siberian unicorns, believes that the study of the remains of these animals allow modern scientists to learn more about features of distant relatives elasmoterium sibirikum - living rhinos. These animals are currently at risk, as the contenders for the disappearance, as well as rhinos are very picky in their habitat and diet.
Maybe this knowledge will be taken closer to modern rhinos (the world there are only a few of their species) and prevent them from disappearing from the face of the Earth.