Skip to comments.5,000-Year-Old Leopard Trap Discovered in Israel
Posted on 09/28/2013 11:29:16 AM PDT by SunkenCiv
Many researchers had assumed the traps were fairly modern, but Porat's colleagues were curious about their provenance and asked her to analyze the traps.
Porat used a technique called optical dating to measure the amount of radiation that had been absorbed from the environment in two of the leopard traps. By comparing that with background levels of radiation in the area, which have changed very little over the millennia, the team could determine when the traps were created.
One of the traps was about 5,000 years old, while the other was 1,600 years old. That suggests this same technology was used for thousands of years. The traps were likely used to lure leopards, but also other predators, such as foxes, wolves, hyenas and caracals, long-eared cats that are common throughout the Middle East.
The traps are near ancient enclosures used by the first sheep and goat herders around 6,000 years ago, Porat said. The herders probably used them to keep their flocks safe from hungry competitors.
From the earliest times, "this is part of their defense system against the elements, which in this case is leopards and other carnivores."
Nowadays, leopards are no longer a menace: Hunting and habitat loss destroyed their populations and the last one was spotted in the region about 10 years ago, making the wild cats extinct in Negev and virtually extinct in Jordan, Porat said.
(Excerpt) Read more at livescience.com ...
If only they could be trained...to stay that small I’d take TWO of em.!
Wow. Leopards in Israel as recently as 10 years ago.
OMG....don’t trap him! Just put him in my lap!
The Israelis tried out a Leopard II a few years back!
Can I pet him too?.what a beautiful cat!!!!
Sure you can, come on over.
BTW, I happened to catch this segment on Jimmy Kimmel the other night. It’s Dave Salmoni, the big cat trainer; he brought some very cute babies. (parts one and two):
Those are beautiful babies! (And Kimmel is a wimp.)
Wow. A snow leopard, a baby lion, and a tiger. And Jon Hamm. Totally awesome.
I wanna pet those bellehs, and scrich their ears.
So do I. Except for Jon Hamm.
He really is...typical leftwing male. I kept hoping one of the cats would swat a paw at him and make him squeal.
LOL, I know, I thought I was going to die of a cute attack.
That snow leopard was so laid-back and amiable....he was handed around to everybody, and still he was like, “Whatever, man.”
*snort* He’d probably wet himself.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.