Ancient shark teeth, bones of woolly rhinoceros, mammoths and other extinct animals are just a few of the rare artifacts that attract Russian paleontologists to the ice-covered Tobol river located about 1,200 miles east of Moscow.
For almost two decades scientists have teamed up with divers for a bone hunt on the outskirts of the town of Kurgan. The search takes place nearly ten feet under water as the air temperatures drop to -4 to -13 degrees.
“There is one explanation to it – underwater visibility and transparency is much better compared to summer or autumn,” said one of the diving enthusiasts, Yaroslav Makarov.
Winter is also better for the divers as the river is shallower and flows more slowly, Makarov added.
The bone-rich underwater area which is believed to be around more than half a mile long was discovered by divers in 2004.
It is described as a unique ancient bone deposit. According to the scientists, each year river waters uncover a new mix of ancient remains belonging to different geologic periods spanning from 66 million to 11 thousand years ago. This year’s findings will traditionally be transferred to local museums after initial studies at the Russian Academy of Sciences.