Tendons, ligaments, fragments of skin and hair, hooves — all are preserved in the muck. In some cases, portions of animal flesh have been preserved. Bones of mammoths, mastodons, bison, horses, wolves, bears and lions are hopelessly entangled! One author counts 1,766 jaws and 4,838 metapodials from ONE species of bison in a small area near Fairbanks, Alaska, alone.
Archaeologist Hibben saw with his own eyes – and smelled with his own nostrils – the specter of death. North of Fairbanks, Alaska, he saw bulldozers pushing the melting muck into sluice boxes for the extraction of gold. As the dozers’ blades scooped up the melting gunk, mammoth tusks and bones “rolled up like shavings before a giant plane,” The stench of rotting flesh – tons of it – could be smelled for miles around.
Hibben and his colleagues walked the pits for days. As they followed the bulldozers they discovered perfect bison skulls with horns attached, mammoth skin with long black hair and jumbled masses of bones.
Appalling Death in Alaska
But let Hibben continue his grisly account:
“Mammals there were in abundance, dumped in all attitudes of death. Most of them were pulled apart by some unexplained prehistoric catastrophic disturbance. Legs and torsos and heads and fragments were found together in piles or scattered separately” (ibid., p. 97).
Logs, twisted trees, branches and stumps were interlaced with the mammal menagerie. The signs of sudden death were legion.
For example, in the Alaskan muck, stomachs of frozen mammoths have been discovered. These frozen stomach masses contain the leaves and grasses the animals had just eaten before death struck. Seemingly, no animal was spared.
“The young lie with the old, foal with dam and calf with cow. Whole herds of animals were apparently killed together, overcome by some common power” (ibid., p. 170). (more…)