Amazingly preserved wolf pup and caribou calf found in Canada

By Phil Robinson

Published February 2019

The spectacular mummified remains of a wolf pup and caribou calf have been discovered by gold miners in the Klondike region of Yukon, Canada. The entire wolf pup has been preserved, and the front half of the caribou calf. Easily observable to the eye are fur, hair, paws, and skin. Elsa Panciroli, a palaeontologist at the University of Edinburgh, said: “Ice age wolf bones are relatively common in the Yukon, but having an animal preserved with skin and fur is just exceptional – you just want to reach out and stroke it. It’s an evocative glimpse into the ice age world.”

From a Biblical perspective the animals would have lived after the Noahic Flood some 4,500 years ago which would have had their representative kinds on board the Ark. Subsequently their ancestors made their way from the Middle East to Canada, and the pup and calf were most likely buried towards the end of the Biblical Ice Age, a period lasting around 500 years after Noah’s Flood.

Jan Zalasiewicz, a palaeobiologist at the University of Leicester said, “A drier and more arid climate would help to preserve skin and fur, and this typically happens when the climate gets colder. The trick here is finding a means of freeze-drying the carcass in these arid conditions and burying it … you need to find a way to dry it and put it in the freezer very quickly.”

This ‘freeze-drying’ would involve the animals being buried in sediment quickly by some catastrophic means, perhaps a flash flood or landslide, and then being frozen. Being trapped in permafrost meant that the pup and calf were not subjected to the normal decay processes allowing the mummification process to take place as they dried out. This provides another wonderful example demonstrating that such exquisite preservation can only be achieved when rapid processes are involved, the direct opposite to anything involving long periods of time.



Lacchia, A., Spectacular ice age wolf pup and caribou dug up in Canada,, 14 September 2018.

For more on the Biblical Ice Age see –