HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Specialized, bone-crushing wolves of Alaska disappeared long ago

The ancient gray wolves that once roamed the icy expanses of Alaska represented a specialized form that apparently died out along with other big animals at the end of the Pleistocene, many thousands of years ago, researchers report online on June 21st in the journal Current Biology, a publication of Cell Press. The extinct Alaskan wolves had robust bodies, strong jaws, and massive canine teeth for killing prey larger than themselves and regularly consuming large bones, according to the researchers.

Our results are surprising as the unique attributes of Alaskan Pleistocene wolves had not been previously recognized and show that wolves suffered an extinction at the end of the Pleistocene, said Blaire Van Valkenburgh of the University of California, Los Angeles. If not for their persistence in the Old World, we might not have wolves in North America today. Regardless, the living gray wolf differs dramatically from that which roamed Alaska just 12,000 years ago.

The gray wolf is one of the few large predators that survived the mass extinction of the late Pleistocene. Nevertheless, wolves disappeared from northern North America at that time.

To further explore the identity of Alaskas ancient wolves in the new study, the researchers collected skeletal remains of the animals from Pleistocene permafrost deposits of eastern Beringia and examined their chemical composition and genetic makeup.

Remarkably, they discovered that the late-Pleistocene wolves were distinct from existing wolves, both genetically and in terms of their physical characteristics. None of the ancient wolves were a genetic match for any modern wolves, they report. Moreover, the animals skull shape and tooth wear, as well as a chemical analysis of their bones, all suggest that eastern Beringian wolves were specialized hunters and scavengers of extinct megafauna.

The ancient wolves had relatively more massive teeth and broader skulls with shorter snouts, e
'"/>

Contact: Erin Doonan
edoonan@cell.com
617-397-2802
Cell Press
21-Jun-2007


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Presence of wolves allows aspen recovery in Yellowstone
2. Ice Age extinction claimed highly carnivorous Alaskan wolves
3. Researchers determine why wolves not dispersing as fast as expected in Yellowstone
4. Contagious cancer in dogs confirmed; origins traced to wolves centuries ago
5. Killing wolves may not protect livestock efficiently
6. Gray wolves maintain the food chain in winter
7. The lost genetic legacy of American gray wolves
8. Wolves of Alaska became extinct 12,000 years ago, scientists report
9. Academy paleontologist and Alaska artist in line for natural history awards
10. University of Alaska Fairbanks awarded $3.8M for bird flu research
11. Changing ocean conditions led to decline in Alaskas sea lion population

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Specialized bone crushing wolves Alaska disappeared long ago

(Date:12/19/2014)... Research and Markets ( http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/8kmfcn/iphone_5s ... "iPhone 5S Fingerprint Sensor - Apple/AuthenTec TMDR92 & ... offering. http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130307/600769 ... July 2012, Apple introduced the fingerprint reading feature ... only device of Apple incorporating such a feature, ...
(Date:12/19/2014)... 2014 Research and Markets ( http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/86ncd6/micro_market ... Market Monitor: North America Perimeter Security Systems Market" ... http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130307/600769 The North American perimeter security ... 3.6% from 2014 to 2019. Although the U.S. market ... Canada is expected to grow at a ...
(Date:12/19/2014)... Calif. , Dec. 18, 2014  23andMe, Inc., ... of a study that pinpoints fine-scale differences in genetic ... States . Since immigrants first arrived ... United States has served as a meeting ... how American history and the ongoing mixing of peoples ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):iPhone 5S Fingerprint Sensor - Apple/AuthenTec TMDR92 & Sapphire - Technology Report 2Micro Market Monitor: North America Perimeter Security Systems Market (Intrusion Detection Sensor, Video Surveillance, Communication/Alarm and Notification, Access Control System) 2Micro Market Monitor: North America Perimeter Security Systems Market (Intrusion Detection Sensor, Video Surveillance, Communication/Alarm and Notification, Access Control System) 323andMe Study Sketches Genetic Portrait of the United States 223andMe Study Sketches Genetic Portrait of the United States 323andMe Study Sketches Genetic Portrait of the United States 4
(Date:12/19/2014)... December 19, 2014 Bioject Medical ... and manufacturer of needle-free injection technology, today announced ... Immunomic Therapeutics, Inc. (“ITI”) for ITI to use ... its LAMP™ vaccine platform. , In the ... Worldwide license to the Biojector®-2000 that triggers based ...
(Date:12/19/2014)... 2014 Charm Sciences is pleased to ... Detection of Aflatoxin M1 in raw commingled milk is ... party validation. The peer reviewed report of the validation ... for Agricultural and Fisheries Research (ILVO-T&V) has been published ... B1, the most toxic aflatoxin and a known carcinogen, ...
(Date:12/19/2014)... 2014 BioPlus Specialty Pharmacy ... the promotion of Nick Maroulis, Pharm.D. to the newly ... , In this position, Dr. Maroulis will continue ... the directors of our multi-site pharmacies as the company ... and during that time he has served in many ...
(Date:12/19/2014)... 2014 Naurex Inc., a biopharmaceutical company leveraging ... of the central nervous system, today announced that ... will present at the 33 rd annual J.P. ... at 3:00 p.m. PST on Tuesday, January 13, 2015, ... Francisco, Calif. About Naurex ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Bioject and Immunomic Therapeutics Enter into an Agreement for License of Needle-Free Technology for LAMP-vax Vaccines 2Bioject and Immunomic Therapeutics Enter into an Agreement for License of Needle-Free Technology for LAMP-vax Vaccines 3Charm Sciences Achieves Independent Validation of First 15 Minute Quantitative Screening Method for Aflatoxin M1 2BioPlus Specialty Pharmacy Promotes Dr. Nick Maroulis to Vice President of Specialty Pharmacy Services 2Naurex to Present at 33rd Annual J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference 2
Cached News: