Mammoth fossils unearthed in Turkey’s northwest
Fossils belonging to mammoths, believed to be eight million years old, have been unearthed in a quarry in the northwestern province of Edirne’s Büyükdöllük village.
After getting notified by the locals of Büyükdöllük village about some bone-like formations found in a quarry, experts from the Trakya University arrived at the spot to examine the structures. It was revealed that the bones belonged to the mammoths.
Trakya University’s Professor Ahmet Yaraş stated that the bones belonged to the mammoths that lived in the Late Miocene period.
“These are fossils dating back eight million years. So, we can say that eight million years of history lies here. There was a life in this area in ancient times, during the glacial period,” he added.
Speaking that the discovery of the fossils is of great importance for Thrace, he said there might be more bones in the region.
“Apart from the defense tooth, there should be skull and molars in this area. If these are also found, it will be possible to exhibit them. This is one of the places where there are about 17-18 remains from the Lower Miocene period. In fact, it is possible to use this place as a laboratory. On this hill, it is possible to see the remains of various large mammoths and elephants that lived in the area,” Yaraş said.
Noting that the area should be taken under protection urgently, Yaraş said, “This place was previously the work area of Enver Bostancı of the Faculty of Language, History and Geography in the 1960s, and these studies should continue.”
“Some of the artifacts found at that time are already exhibited in the Edirne Archeology Museum. Therefore, Trakya University Rectorate also has a project related to these finds,” he added.
Yaraş also said if the Natural History Museum got established in the near future, a large exhibition hall could be organized for such finds, shedding light on the ancient life in the Balkans and Thrace. “Therefore, this area needs to be well screened and excavated.”
Pointing out the fact that the fossils discovered are rare ones, Yaraş said: “They lived in this area because of this sediment. The fact that they lived in this area shows that there was life here in ancient times, during the glacial period. This is of great importance in terms of the history of Thrace.”
Yaraş also said that the museum would be established under the leadership of the Trakya University Head of Biology Department Professor Yılmaz Çamlıtepe.
“It is our duty to protect and transfer all cultural assets to the future. The university is working on this. For example, the establishment of such a museum is of great importance not only for Thrace but also for the whole Balkans. Enriching the region with such finds will be a very good investment in the future,” he added.