Study Investigates Ice Age Climate in Siberia

Siberia Lake BaikalLAWRENCE, KANSAS—A new study of pollen samples dated to between 45,000 and 50,000 years ago suggests that early modern humans may have encountered a period of warmer temperatures, higher humidity, grasslands, and coniferous forests as they migrated across Europe and Asia and into Siberia, according to a statement released by the University of Kansas. Koji Shichi of the Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute, Masami Izuho of Tokyo Metropolitan University, Kenji Kashiwaya of Kanazawa University, and Ted Goebel of the University of Kansas created a chronology of environmental changes at Siberia’s Lake Baikal with the data collected from the pollen samples. The study “provides critical insights into environmental conditions at Lake Baikal, using pollen records to reveal surprising warmth during this period,” Goebel explained. The researchers acknowledge, however, that more evidence of the presence of modern humans in the region during the Pleistocene is needed. Read the original scholarly article about this research in Science Advances. To read about 4,000-year-old human remains recovered near Lake Baikal, go to “The Case of the Missing Incisors.”


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