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The extreme cold preserved some of the male mammoth's soft tissue, including the remains of its fat hump and its penis, they said.

However, injuries found on the mammoth's bones — including its ribs, left shoulder bone, right tusk and cheekbone — suggest that it had a violent end.

Some of the bones have dents and punctures, possibly from thrusting spears, the researchers said.

"[These injuries] are clearly related to the death of the animal, which was killed and then partly butchered," Pitulko said in a statement he emailed to journalists.

The slashed and punctured bones of a woolly mammoth suggest that humans lived in the far northern reaches of Siberia earlier than scientists had previously thought, a new study finds.

Before the surprising discovery, researchers thought that humans lived in the freezing Siberian Arctic no earlier than about 30,000 to 35,000 years ago.

To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer).Radiocarbon dating measures the amount of carbon-14 (a carbon isotope, or variant with a different number of neutrons in its nucleus) left in a once-living organism, and can be used reliably to date material to about 50,000 years ago, although some techniques allow researchers to date older organic objects.The researchers also found a Pleistocene wolf humerus (arm bone) that had been injured by a "sharp implement with a conical tip," Pitulko said in the statement.This finding suggests that ancient humans hunted and ate a variety of mammals, not just mammoths, Pitulko said.[In Images: Ancient Beasts of the Arctic] The hunters who butchered the mammoth and wolf were far from the Bering Land Bridge, which lay exposed at that time.

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