£22k for Yogi's frosty great uncle
22k for Yogi's frosty great uncle
The 100,000 year-old fossil of an Ice Age bear is up for sale in London
A huge (8' 6" or 2m 60cm tall) skeleton of an ice-age bear has come up for auction at Bonhams. The example of ursus spelaeus, which was uncovered in the Carpathian Mountains, Romania, dates from an Ice Age 50,000-100,000 years ago.
The bear's shoulders and hips have required reconstruction. Nevertheless, this is a very impressive specimen, and is estimated at 18,000-22,000.
Ice Age cave bear
Fossils proved to be a strong area of collectibles in 2009. The greatest prices were reserved for dinosaurs, with a T. Rex skeleton selling for $5m and a duckbilled dinosaur for $440,000.
However, there was also the record breaking sale of a mammoth (nicknamed 'Olaf') for 302,440 ($444,680 or 280,373) in September. Even a non-fossilised egg from an elephant bird (which became extinct a few centuries ago sold for 25,000.
Bonhams' auction takes place in London on January 20.
Collectors interested in fossils may also be interested to know that a series of fossils including the skull of a protoceratops, thought to have inspired the myth of griffins, are coming up for sale at Heritage Auctions.