Mammoth weekend at Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre

A weekend of talks and activities will celebrate 30 years since the discovery of Shropshire's own woolly mammoth in the coming weeks.

Mammoth weekend at Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre

The Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre, which has a replica of the adult mammoth skeleton, will be putting on the weekend for those interested in prehistoric creatures and natural history, along with mammoth-themed activities for children.

The Mammoth Weekend will include a talk by Dr Adrian Lister, an expert from London's Natural History Museum, at 6pm on October 8.

His talk will be followed by a buffet reception attended by others involved in the original project that saw the remains of the adult male, and at least four young mammoths, disinterred from a gravel bog at Condover, near Shrewsbury, in 1986.

Study of the skeletal remains since has overturned thinking about the history of the elephant-like creatures, suggesting the gigantic beasts became extinct in north-western Europe no more than 14,000 years ago, 7,000 more recently then when they were previously thought to be alive – and suggested they may have gone extinct due to climate change rather than over-hunting as previously thought.

On October 9, Stephanie Bellows, education officer at the Discovery Centre, will be delivering a daytime talk from 2pm to 3pm on bones in general and what they can tell us, looking at the human skeleton compared the bones of different animals.

Stephanie, an osteoarchaeologist, will talk about what information we can get from skeletons, from facial reconstruction to the location an individual grew-up.

Across the weekend the mammoth exhibition, including regular "meet the mammoth" talks, will be free from 10am to 5pm, with a mammoth facts trail to follow and the chance to go "mammoth tracking" in Onny Meadows to find footprints, fur and droppings.

There will be half-hour bookable sessions for children on Fascinating Forensics, piecing together a rodent skeleton from an owl pellet, at noon and 3pm on October 8 and 12.30pm on October 9; and decorating Munchable Mammoth biscuits at 1pm and 4pm on October 8 and 3.30pm on October 9.

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