UK Daily Mail
Feb 28, 2010
A fossil find suggests that polar bears may only have come into existence during an ice age 150,000 years ago as part of the brown bears’ battle for survival against climate change.
Scientists discovered the jawbone of an animal that died up to 130,000 years ago at Poolepynten on the Arctic island of Svalbard. It is oldest polar bear fossil ever found and has given an intriguing insight into the origins of the planet’s largest predator.
Professors Olafur Ingolfsson, of the University of Iceland, and Oystein Wiig, of the University of Oslo, who made the discovery believe it reveals polar bears may have survived at least one long period of global warming.
The research paper, as reported in The Sunday Times newspaper, concluded: ‘The Poolepynten subfossil mandible, which we argue is from a fully grown male, is probably the oldest polar bear find discovered so far. Its true age is interpreted to be 110,000-130,000 years old.’
This article was posted: Sunday, February 28, 2010 at 7:09 am