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Scientists have found many things buried and preserved in ice. Some of these things are stranger than others. And some of them are so bizarre, they truly baffle the mind. While many of these findings are typically woolly creatures, primed and ready for the arctic environment, others are inexplicably weird. Here are a few of the more choice, mysterious, and enthralling findings scientists discovered in the icy worlds of the deep north and south. Prepare yourself.

Planes on ice

Of the other odd things scientists have found in ice is crashed technology. While not ancient, this tech is definitely a surprise. Long presumed lost, sometimes these things have a way of being found again. In 1952, for instance, a military plane bound for Anchorage, Alaska came up a little bit short, crashing into a nearby glacier.

a plane found frozen on ice

Alive in ice?

Sometimes the things scientists find in ice aren’t even dead. Sometimes these unholy findings aren’t the result of frozen mishaps, but instead normal changes to the environment. Certain alligators, for instance, can survive in ice for the duration of an entirely frigid and perilous winter.

an alligator frozen in ice
For whatever reason, their physiology enables them to preserve their internal organs in the ice cold frozen waters. Where you or I might succumb to frostbite and die, then, an alligator might thrive—or at least survive. This frozen state of temporary hibernation lets them live through these temperamental conditions. If only we could do the same.

The frozen fox

Sometimes the animals scientists find in ice are more contemporary. And this makes sense—modern animals can freeze in ice just like those that existed back in the day. And this is the case with certain foxes. Their cuteness, in other words, was not enough to prevent them from getting frozen solid in the ice cold waters of the Arctic conditions in which they were found.

PHOTO REPETITION WITH DIFFERENT IMAGE SECTION - A block of ice with a frozen fox can be seen in Fridingen, Germany, 13 January 2017. The animal broke through the thin ice on the Donau river and drowned. Photo: Johannes Stehle/dpa | usage worldwide (Photo by Johannes Stehle/picture alliance via Getty Images)

Old forests

As glaciers advance, they essentially crush everything in their way. But, also, as they move they pick up rocks and debris. Scientists call this sediment moraine. This moraine can act as a cushion for some of the stuff that the glacier would otherwise crush. And this is the case for certain old forests.

glacier barreling over water and land
Instead of uprooting the trees and destroying the forest as the glacier travels, the moraine enables a layer of non-abrasive (or at least not-as-abrasive) material to cushion the move. The forest left beneath, then, still exists. In some places, you find entire forests when these glaciers recede.

Human sacrifice

In Chile, some things were found in the ice that were a little more disconcerting than most. These things were Inca sacrifices. It was ritual, for instance, for the Inca to sacrifice children and other unfortunate souls to the highest peaks of the Andes Mountains. Such traditions aren’t uncommon to the societies of our past.

mountains in chili
The Incas thought such sacrifices would bring them rain, better crops, and protection. The highest of these peaks is around 15,000 feet. And, so far, in these deep mountains, they have found around 115 different burial sites. In 1954, for instance, they found the body of one young sacrifice they named “Juanita.”

Human sacrifice: part II

Like other societies of the time, the Inca were fond of human sacrifice. During rituals that paid homage to the Sun God Inti, they thought they had to go to extremes—in this case, extreme heights and cold—to appease. They didn’t test their hypotheses by not sacrificing the children to see what happens.


Kazan- Kazan National Research Technical University Казанский национальный исследовательский технический университет имени А. Н. Туполева he graduated in Economics in 1982

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