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Quaternary Park?

News from Reuters (and no, I am not making this up):

"Team of scientists hatches plan to revive mammoth species"

LONDON -- Scientists are mounting an expedition to Siberia to seek out
frozen mammoth sperm and bring the extinct species back to life, the Sunday
Times has reported.

The newspaper said the plan was to use the frozen sperm to fertilize
elephant's eggs and breed hybrids.

"Cross-breeding with successive generations would allow the hybrids
gradually to become pure genetic copies of their mammoth ancestors," the
report said.

Today's Sunday Times said British, Russian and Japanese researchers were
involved in the project.

Mammoths -- large hairy elephant-like creatures -- died out some 30,000
years ago, but their remains have been found in several places in Siberia.


Actually, mammoths died out more recently than that (about 10,000 years
ago, I believe), not counting the island pygmies which hung on until about
4,000 years ago, although I would think that the scientists are primarily
interested in the big varieties (which have been found frozen).

Given the elephant's long gestation  and maturation periods, this
cross-breeding could take some time. 

Are you reading this, Mr. Crichton?

-- Ralph Miller III     gbabcock@best.com

"My professor collected mammoth sperm in Siberia and all I got was this
lousy T-shirt."