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New fossil findings reveal giant arctic camels

Bone fragments discovered in northern Canada give evidence that camels actually hail from the arctic cycle and their ancestors are possibly thirty percent larger than modern camels.

Researchers on Ellesmere Island, found thirty fragments of a camel’s lower leg. According to their calculations, this camel was a 3.5 meters giant and lived on the High Arctic 3.5 million years ago. The scientists believe that the Arctic had a milder temperature at the time, but it was still an area covered with snow most of the year.

The paleontologists think this discovery will change the way we think about camels. Maybe they were adapted to live in an arctic environment instead of their present arid one. It is possible that in their humps they stored fat to survive the long arctic winters when food was scarce, just as their descendants do to survive the inhospitable environment of the deserts.

Dr. Natalia Rybczynski, of the Canadian Museum of Nature, claims that “some specializations seen in modern camels, such as their wide flat feet, large eyes and humps for fat, may be adaptations derived from living in a polar environment”.

Source: Daily Mail

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