More about mammoths : Clues from rocks

When Did Lupe Die?

Lupe died about 14,000 years ago.

How do we know?

Scientists can figure out how old a fossil is by using a method called radiocarbon dating. All living things, plants and animals, contain a chemical called carbon. Carbon decays or breaks down at a constant rate through time. Scientists can measure how much carbon has decayed in a fossil and then figure out how long ago the plant or animal died.

For older fossils, scientists look at the decay of chemicals other than carbon.

To figure out how long ago Lupe died, scientists collected fossil plants found near Lupe. They measured how much the carbon in the plants had decayed and determined that Lupe died about 14,000 years ago.

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