11,000 year old footprints of giant sloths have been found preserved in gypsum in New Mexico. Some also have human footprints within them, which effectively records all the action of a sloth hunt

New Mexico Desert Captures Evidence of Sloth Hunt

A desert in the American Southwest provides evidence of a hunt from long ago.

Scientists found footprints from a hunt involving ancient human beings and a large prehistoric sloth. They discovered the footprints in what is now the White Sands National Monument in the state of New Mexico.

The discovery is extremely rare. The researchers say it could change scientists’ understanding of how ancient humans interacted with large animals. It also may show whether our ancestors were responsible for the disappearance of the giant ground sloth.

Footprints in footprints

The researchers found more than 100 footprints dating back between 10,000 and 15,000 years. They were found among particles of gypsum, a soft mineral, in the desert.

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6 thoughts on “11,000 year old footprints of giant sloths have been found preserved in gypsum in New Mexico. Some also have human footprints within them, which effectively records all the action of a sloth hunt”

  1. eskimoexplosion

    Can someone photoshop the spear out of the picture so it looks like they’re dancing?

  2. NotTheBelt

    It’s no wonder they went extinct, any species that repeatedly falls for the “hey! Look over here!” trick is doomed for extinction.

  3. AdvocateSaint

    [Chauvet Cave](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chauvet_Cave) has some very interesting preserved traces.

    As [this Redditor pointed out,](https://old.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/7u0rr2/serious_what_is_the_best_unexplained_mystery/dthfzge/?context=3) its cave paintings display a peculiar mastery of art techniques and style not seen in other cave paintings of the era.

    Also, there are preserved footprints of a small child exploring the cave, next to the pawprints of a large canine animal that seemingly trotted alongside him. Between 20,000 and 30,000 thousand years old, this is among the oldest evidence of human-dog friendship.

  4. prbs7

    The hunt started 11,000 years ago and has just finished.

  5. certain_people

    Hunting sloths has got to be hunting on easy mode, right?

  6. giantenemycrab-

    I find this highly unlikely. Why would they chase the sloth if they could just use suppressive mortar fire to slow it down and their KAR93K sniper rifles to finish it off.

    Cavemen usually only wore light Kevlar, and hunting parties were more suited to engage megasloths from a distance. Because of this, I’m gonna have to call BS.

    Don’t ever use the word smart with me.

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