9.2 Million Year Old Rhino Skull Preserved in Volcanic Rock

The finding is a very rare one, high temperatures are destructive in such cases

A paper published in November 21 issue of PLOS ONE journal reveals the recent discovery of the skull of a rhino that died 9. 2 million years ago in a volcanic eruption.

Only 2% of all the fossils discovered in the world are conserved in volcanic rock, Science Daily reports.

The fossil was found in Turkey and scientists say that some uncommon characteristics show that the Eastern Mediterranean rhino's death most likely occurred in an environment heated to up 400°C.

As a consequence, the rhino was “cooked to death.”

“The body was baked under a temperature approximating 400°C, then dismembered within the pyroclastic flow, and the skull separated from body,” scientists explain.

The skull was removed from the death place to over 30 km North by the volcanic ash's flow. That's where researchers have found it.

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