2021-06-11

“Like” all the way to the north, there have been so many times in millions of years

By yqqlm yqqlm

Xinhua News Agency, Beijing, June 11 (Reporters Gemdale, Dong Ruifeng) This time Yunnan The wild elephants moved north to”walk and eat” all the way, attracting a lot of attention. If you count the time in millions of years, you will be surprised to find that in geological history, elephants have frequently and on a large scale”back and forth” between the north and the south of our country. Why are these”long noses” like this? What role did the Yunnan region play in it?

Recently, the reporter learned from the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences that the Wang Shiqi team of the institute outlined a”migration map” of elephants from the north to the south for tens of millions of years based on the study of existing fossils. Related research results have been published in the international journal”Palaeogeography, Paleoclimatology, and Paleoecology”.

Researcher Wang Shiqi introduced that elephants have appeared in China for about 19 million years. Studies have found that about 24 million years ago, elephants that originated in Africa may have been The uplifting Qinghai-Tibet region reached the north of my country, including cogs, yoke teeth, etc. After that, as the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau rose, this migration route was blocked, and Xiang Lei turned to”diversion” to Yunnan, passing through central my country and Eastern moves northward.

“About 18 million years ago, the ridged elephants that appeared in eastern my country may be from Yunnan, my country or Southeast Asia and other places migrated northward, and eventually even reached Japan.” Wang Shiqi said.

In history, because of climate change and other reasons, elephants have repeatedly”moved” from north to south. Wang Shiqi told reporters that Yunnan is not only an important”passage” for elephants to move north in history, but also my country including Yunnansouth , it is also a”refuge” for elephants. He said that this is mainly due to the mild and humid climate in the south of my country and the luxuriant forests. With the uplift of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau in the north, the climate is becoming increasingly dry and it is no longer suitable for some elephants to survive. Therefore, in case of climate change, elephants tend to retreat to Yunnan and other places.

“About 6 million years ago, the world entered a warm and humid period, Sabertooth elephant</span class=”candidate-entity-word” data-gid=”20320315″ qid=”6585532065607849223″> span> and Chinese mastodon appeared in Yunnan. Since then, they have entered the north together, leaving behind including Yellow River Elephant /span> and many fossils.” Wang Shiqi said, but the good times did not last long. As the climate became cold again about 3 million years ago, Mammoths appeared in the north, saber-toothed elephants and Chinese mastodons retreated to dormant in Yunnan and other places.

When did the closely watched Asian elephant appear? Wang Shiqi told reporters that the Asian elephant genus appeared in China about 1.5 million years ago. As the earth entered the Holocene warm period about 10,000 years ago, all mammoths, sabertooths, etc. Extinction left only one species of Asian elephant living on the territory of China.

“In addition to adapting to a warmer environment, Asian elephants have a wider range of food than sabertooth elephants that also live in the south, so they survived. In During the Yin and Shang Dynasties, Asian elephants were once distributed in the Yellow River basin. Since then, due to the development of the Central Plains by humans, Asian elephants went all the way south and eventually retreated to Yunnan.”Wang Shiqi said.

Source:Xinhuanet