Remember California Man the stone cold 90s classic with Pauly Shore larking about an LA high school with an unfrozen caveman. Sean Astin was in it. Before Stranger Things and all those Lord of the Rings films. No? Look it up.
Why? Because the discovery of an extinct cave lion cub from the Ice Age has led to the possibility of it being cloned and brought back to life after 50,000 years in the cold. And I’d never tell you to watch Ice Age. You should already know that’s a great film.
The Siberian Times reports the little fur ball was found ‘perfectly preserved’ its paw – likely very cutely – resting on its head on the bank of the Tirekhtykh river in the Abiysky district of Yukutia in Siberia in Russia by local resident Boris Berezhnov.
The little lion cub, believed to be only one and a half to two months old before perishing, was unveiled by excited scientists today in Yakutsk. It’s not clear whether the cub was male or female.
Dr Albert Protopopov said:
It is a perfectly preserved lion cub, all the limbs have survived.
There are no traces of external injuries on the skin.
The preservation of the cub is so good, scientists believe it raises hopes of successfully cloning the species back to life.
Two tiny lion cubs were found in the same Siberian region two years ago, however the recent find is believed to be in a much better condition.
One of the cubs found previously was believed to contain traces of mother’s milk.
Dr Protopopov continued:
Everyone was amazed then and did not believe that such a thing is possible, and now, two years later, another cave lion has been found in the Abyiski district.
The preservation degree is even better.
The earlier found pair of cubs were at first believed to be 12,000 years old, dating them to around the time the species became extinct. Later research found them to be up to 55,000 years old.
Tests will be made on the latest little cub, the estimate is it’s between 20,000 and 50,000 years old. An analysis of the cub’s teeth is expected to give a good indication of its age.
Though you’ll have to check back on what the scientists find. Research is expected to take up to three years, according to Dr Protopopov.
The little cub was discovered in September by Berezhnov and its body measures approximately 45 centimetres.
While Dr Protopopov told journalists cloning may be possible due to the condition of the cub, you wouldn’t want to be nearby when it wakes. I’m bad enough after eight hours’ sleep.
Now go and watch California Man, otherwise known as Encino Man.
Tim Horner is a sub-editor at UNILAD. He graduated with a BA Journalism from University College Falmouth before most his colleagues were born. A previous editor of adult mags, he now enjoys bringing the tone down in the viral news sector.