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Journal SEWilco's Journal: Mammoths in Alaska 8,000 years ago, detected through DNA 1 1

DNA traces of mammoths have been detected in Alaska. "Sedimentary ancient DNA" (sedaDNA) was found in permafrost containing material from 11,000 to 7,000 years ago. This indicates that some mammoths survived the extinction event 13,000 years ago which wiped out many large mammals across North America.

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Mammoths in Alaska 8,000 years ago, detected through DNA

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  • I didn't think of it this way before, but the author points out that fossils are extremely rare. They represent a tiny, tiny fraction of the past population that died in a specific way in a specific place, and as such they are poor indicators of "events". (Especially in the way humans define "events" as being a point in time, rather than a large range of time.)

    The oldest fossil may be 13,000 years old, but that doesn't mean the last mammoth died 13,000 years ago. It's hard to see the pattern of millions

"What I've done, of course, is total garbage." -- R. Willard, Pure Math 430a