Reindeer herders in Arctic Russia have found an impeccably preserved carcass of a cave bear from the ice age, according to U.S. News.
The finding was made on the Lyakhovsky Islands, which are apart of the New Siberian Islands archipelago located between the East Siberian Sea and the Laptev Sea.
The carcass was found as the permafrost in northern Russia has been melting in recent years.
Scientists from the North-Eastern Federal University in Yakutsk, the leading center for research in prehistoric species, called the discovery groundbreaking.
Researcher Lena Grigorieva said in a statement published by the university that, “this is the first and only find of its kind — a whole bear carcass with soft tissues.”
“It is completely preserved, with all internal organs in place, including even its nose,” Grigorieva added. “Previously, only skulls and bones were found. This find is of great importance for the whole world.”
During a preliminary analysis, it was found that the adult bear could be 22,000 to 39,500 years old.
However, researcher Maxim Cheprasov said, “It is necessary to carry out radiocarbon analysis to determine the precise age of the bear,” according to ABC News.
Scientists can’t visit the location of the discovery as it was made several hundred miles away from Yakutsk, which alone is located roughly 5,000 miles away from Moscow, according to CNN.
Independently, researchers have found the carcass of cave bear cubs on the mainland of Russia in Yakutia. Scientists are confident that they will obtain its DNA, per U.S. News.
In recent years discoveries have been made due to the melting permafrost of mammoths, woolly rhinos, cave lion and other prehistoric animals.