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Friday, December 20, 2013

The World's Oldest Domesticated Cat fossil was found

Archaeologists discover the oldest fossil cats in the world, dating from the period 5,300 years ago in an agricultural village in northern China called Quanhucun. The first evidence of domesticated cats comes much later, in Egyptian artwork from about 4,000 years ago.
A cat suns itself on a tiled roof at the Earth Altar Temple Park in Beijing. Researchers have found evidence that Chinese villagers used cats to get rid of rodents 5,300 years ago. (Picture from: http://www.nbcnews.com/)
Scientists believe that the discovery gives clues to how wild cats were start domesticated at the beginning. Scientists supposedly, Farmers in past time many suffered losses due to rodents that eat the crops.

Originally a stray cat come to prey on rodents. Over time, the cat settled in villages where farmers live, adapt, and survive by eating pests. In turn, because it might be considered useful, the farmers begin treating cats as pets.

"What's interesting about this study was able to show how the cat came to human life," said Fiona Marshall, a researcher of Washington University in St. Louis. At the site of the discovery of fossils, scientists are uncovering evidence of support that serves as the first cat was the pests-eating.
Field specimens from the site of Quanhucun show key body parts and the presence of an aged feline with worn dentition. Clockwise, from top left: left mandible with worn fourth premolar and first molar, right humerus, left tibia, left pelvis. (Picture from: http://www.nbcnews.com/)
Researchers found signs that rodents were threatening the village grain supply. Storage vessels were designed to keep them out, and rodents had burrowed into a grain-storage pit. In addition, the scientists also found traces of the chemical in the cat's bones indicate that the animal was formerly consuming rodents.

"Obviously, they are the first farmers pets," Marshall said as quoted by USA Today, on Monday, December 16, 2013. Other things remain a mystery. For example, how the cat ended up really sticky with humans. Another possible question is how cat which used to hunt for their own food now prefer to ask. *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | USA TODAY | NBC NEWS]
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