Giant polar bears may have roamed Alaska only 1,300 years ago. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 Alan D. Wilson
A skull belonging to what is thought to be an extinct species of giant polar bear has been discovered.
The fourth-largest polar bear skull ever recorded, the skull measures 16 inches across and is believed to date back around 1,300 years.
Very little is actually known about this elusive ancient species outside of tales passed down to the descendants of the indigenous people who once inhabited Alaska's remote wilderness.
Some of the stories talk about 'king bears' measuring up to 12ft in length - that's double the size of today's polar bears which typically only grow to a maximum of around 6ft.
According to Dr. Anne Jensen, the recently discovered skull is from an adult bear and likely belonged to a subspecies of today's polar bears.
"The front part of the skull, from roughly the eyes forward, is like that of typical polar bears," she said. "The back part of the skull is noticeably longer than other bear skulls."
Exactly when these 'king bears' might have disappeared however remains unknown.
Source: Fox News | Comments (2)
King Polar Bear