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|Friday, July 14, 2000, updated at 08:55(GMT+8)|
Asian Elephant Fossils Found in GuangxiChinese archaeologists have discovered well-preserved fossils of the Asian elephant dating back about 50,000 years to 100,000 years in a mountain cave in Pubei County of South China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.
The archeologists believe that the fossils were those of Asian elephants that lived in the late period the Pleistocene.
Sources with the archaeological team said that the fossils of the Asian elephant's skull, thighbones, ribs and part of its chine were found in a mountain cave near Mocun Village, Pubei County.
A senior researcher with Guangxi Regional Museum of Natural Sciences believes the findings are the most complete Asian elephant fossils ever excavated in China.
The archaeologists also unearthed the fossils of more than 30 kinds of mammals that lived at the same time with Asian elephants. Experts held the animals belonged to the giant panda-stegodon type, a typical animal group of the Pleistocene.
The experts said that the discovery is highly valuable for studying the distribution and evolution of the animal groups in south China since the Quarternary Period and for studying the ecological environment at that time.
Local government departments have earmarked a special fund for continuing the excavation and preservation of the fossils, sources said.
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