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Old 27th February 2018, 07:52 PM   #1
Venom
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Frozen Mammoth meat edible

I read this list a while back that claims ancient animals frozen in permafrost in the (Siberian?) tundra were eaten by scientists.

Number 1 on the "Foods edible after an incredible length of time":

Quote:
That’s not a typo. People have actually eaten food older than most of humanity itself. If you’re wondering which magical animals have flesh edible after such a length of time, we hate to disappoint you by not answering, “Unicorns.” But we’ll try to make up for that disappointment by answering with: “Extinct ones.”Mammoth corpses can and have been found with plenty of meat on their bones, due to the bodies lying in areas covered in permafrost. Some of this flesh is indeed edible. Many unconfirmed but interesting stories tell of hungry explorers, usually Russian ones, taking bites out of mammoth corpses. We also have some confirmed cases of people eating food tens of thousands of years old. Like the paleontologists who cooked and ate a dish made with the marrow of a 50,000-year-old horse bone. Or the researchers who ate a piece of meat from a 36,000-year-old bison corpse, for no other reason than to see if they could. We guess what we’re trying to say is one of two things. One: Old food isn’t going to kill you if you’re careful. Two: Studying hard might let you eat a dinosaur steak.

The claim has since been refuted, I think, but to my knowledge the refutation never said it wasn't possible.

But do you think this is a good idea? I'm wondering how the quality of the meat would change after being frozen for tens of thousands of years.

BTW, Wrangel Island apparently supported a mammoth population until about 2000 B.C.
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Old 27th February 2018, 08:17 PM   #2
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I've seen these preserved mammoths in museum exhibits and also in photos. They seem to be dehydrated or desiccated. You are left with something like cold hairy jerky. I don't know if it could be rehydrated at all. Maybe people have tried to eat it but it wasn't palatable.
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Old 27th February 2018, 08:50 PM   #3
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Meh, freezer burn.
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Old 27th February 2018, 09:33 PM   #4
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You first.
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Old 28th February 2018, 06:35 AM   #5
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I'm not that hungry.

I don't think I've ever been that hungry.

Could we call it Bigfoot meat?
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Old 28th February 2018, 07:02 AM   #6
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Old 28th February 2018, 07:09 AM   #7
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Here comes lunch.

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Old 28th February 2018, 07:11 AM   #8
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That's the largest McNugget I've ever seen.
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Old 28th February 2018, 07:11 AM   #9
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I heard this a long time ago already. What makes me wonder: these mammoths were living on land that supported enough plant life to support them. I.e. there were shrubd, grass, someting.

Then they die and fall over.

And then they get frozen before the meat was eaten by scavengers, maggots or microbes. And never unfroze again, not even seasonally.

So either, they had moved to frostx, uninhabitable altitudes or latitudes, or climate changed suddenly and permanently. Or how else would a corpse get enclosed in permafrost before rotting?
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Old 28th February 2018, 08:17 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Oystein View Post
I heard this a long time ago already. What makes me wonder: these mammoths were living on land that supported enough plant life to support them. I.e. there were shrubd, grass, someting.

Then they die and fall over.

And then they get frozen before the meat was eaten by scavengers, maggots or microbes. And never unfroze again, not even seasonally.

So either, they had moved to frostx, uninhabitable altitudes or latitudes, or climate changed suddenly and permanently. Or how else would a corpse get enclosed in permafrost before rotting?
Why don't you ask Ötzi?WP
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Old 28th February 2018, 08:33 AM   #11
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Good, I was wondering about that. Mine's been frozen for ages!
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Old 28th February 2018, 11:12 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Oystein View Post
I heard this a long time ago already. What makes me wonder: these mammoths were living on land that supported enough plant life to support them. I.e. there were shrubd, grass, someting.

Then they die and fall over.

And then they get frozen before the meat was eaten by scavengers, maggots or microbes. And never unfroze again, not even seasonally.

So either, they had moved to frostx, uninhabitable altitudes or latitudes, or climate changed suddenly and permanently. Or how else would a corpse get enclosed in permafrost before rotting?
You've made assumptions.

Nearly all of these carcasses show some decomposition and evidence of being exposed. Indications of animal scavenging are common. It's also common to find them with missing parts.

The most ideal situation for preservation would be the rapid submerging or covering in freezing water or freezing sediments. Even then there can be some decomposition. The passage of time and varying climate can cause the carcasses to become exposed and then scavenged and decomposed.

It's theorized that many died in rivers, lakes, holes and crevices. Being quickly covered and then frozen solidly would be best for preservation. Then finding them before they are naturally exposed is ideal. But it's very rare for a high quality preserved specimen to be found. They rot and they get eaten by animals.

A mammoth that simply fell over dead on the grassy tundra would not be expected to become preserved in permafrost.
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Old 28th February 2018, 11:24 AM   #13
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Old 28th February 2018, 11:58 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Oystein View Post
So either, they had moved to frostx, uninhabitable altitudes or latitudes, or climate changed suddenly and permanently. Or how else would a corpse get enclosed in permafrost before rotting?
As the young, male mammoths left to find new territory, they would travel through unfamiliar areas, over ice lakes, fall through and be preserved. They would be walking over a bog, and fall through. This is why a large percentage of mammoth skeletons are male. The females would stay with the herd, which had mature, experienced elephants guiding it. https://www.sciencedirect.com/scienc...60982217312642

We see this dispersal pattern in the North American cougar, where the males leave to find mates, and the females stay in the home region.
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Old 28th February 2018, 04:34 PM   #15
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Thanks for the answers!
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Old 28th February 2018, 06:31 PM   #16
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I recall reading at least 50 years ago that the Czars served mammoth meat at state dinners. Yes, I was a bit of a science nerd.
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Old 2nd March 2018, 12:20 AM   #17
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I am told that meat stored in the freezer is good for up to a year, depending on the meat. So how can this meat be good for thousands of years? Is it the fact that it is dried as well as frozen?
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Old 2nd March 2018, 01:29 AM   #18
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Nothing wrong with a bit of freezer burn.

If it smells OK, is not slimy or a funny colour, I'll give it a try.

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Old 2nd March 2018, 06:55 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Cheetah View Post
Nothing wrong with a bit of freezer burn.

If it smells OK, is not slimy or a funny colour, I'll give it a try.

Also, even if the meat fermented, or a little aged, if you cook it, it probably is 'ok' for most people.
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Old 2nd March 2018, 07:01 AM   #20
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Mammoth meat would be better used sequencing DNA to eventually bring them back, but failing that yes I would absolutely try it, how could I pass that up?
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Old 2nd March 2018, 07:37 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by rjh01 View Post
I am told that meat stored in the freezer is good for up to a year, depending on the meat. So how can this meat be good for thousands of years? Is it the fact that it is dried as well as frozen?
That's because we're lied to by those with vested interests. Meat will never go off if kept frozen, whether for a month or a year or a thousand years. The taste and texture will deteriorate, however, and I doubt you'd want to eat it much after a few years have passed.
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Old 2nd March 2018, 11:57 AM   #22
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Surprised a certain entrepreneur hasn't started a business to produce cultured mammoth meat straight from Mother Russia . Maybe the technology isn't quite ready.
Trump's Mammoth Steaks "They're Huge"

https://www.wired.com/2012/02/headle...cken-solution/
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Old 2nd March 2018, 01:04 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by chuff8xt View Post
Surprised a certain entrepreneur hasn't started a business to produce cultured mammoth meat straight from Mother Russia . Maybe the technology isn't quite ready.
Trump's Mammoth Steaks "They're Huge"

https://www.wired.com/2012/02/headle...cken-solution/
Now that article is disturbing
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Old 2nd March 2018, 01:37 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by IIIClovisIII View Post
Now that article is disturbing
Not really, it's just the random musings of a bored student and a philosophy lecturer.
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Old 2nd March 2018, 02:03 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by baron View Post
Not really, it's just the random musings of a bored student and a philosophy lecturer.
I would call this satire. You may be shocked by it, but then if you try to criticise it you end up criticising the current chicken growing methods.
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