Warning: while the findings are correctly reported for what they are, they seem to be very old news, not from 2008-12 but from 1994-98 (h/t to Eurologist). It’s possible that the opening of a new museum next year triggered the press release, which is in any case unacceptably misleading.
However as the data is valid and the findings interesting in their own right, I won’t delete this entry.
|One of the Schöningen spears|
Eight wooden spears and remains of many large mammals have been found in an abandoned mine in Schöningen (Lower Saxony, Germany). The area was underwater before the mine explotation began what explains (because of low oxygen) the exceptional preservation of the weapons, though to have been made by Homo heidelbergensis, such as the contemporaneous specimen from Steinheim, the direct ancestor of Neanderthals.
The bones of large mammals — elephants, rhinoceroses, horses and lions — as well as the remains of amphibians, reptiles, shells and even beetles have been preserved in the brown coal. Pines, firs, and black alder trees are preserved complete with pine cones, as have the leaves, pollen and seeds of surrounding flora.
Another findings from the last several years of research in this site are a water buffalo, a well preserved aurochs, as well as other artifacts, bones and wood – all them apparently from more recent periods.
Source: Science Daily.