Ebbsfleet discovery shows humans hunted prehistoric elephants almost 500,000 years ago

PUBLISHED: 06:00 29 September 2013

Humans alive almost 500,000 years ago were able to hunt animals as large as a prehistoric elephant, fossils unearthed in Ebbsfleet show.

The find was made during the building of the high-speed railway from the Channel Tunnel to London 10 years ago.

Dr Francis Wenban-Smith, a researcher in palaeolithic archaeology at the University of Southampton who made the discovery, has told of the excitement of uncovering a piece of prehistory.

He found a flint core in the elephant’s rib cage, confirming the human link.

It is believed the remains date back 420,000 years and Dr Wenban-Smith thinks scattered flint artefacts found around the carcass suggest it was butchered for its meat.

The discovery of this undisturbed grave is unique in Britain as only a handful of other elephant skeletons have been found.

Findings suggest the animal was twice as big as the African elephants of today.

Most Read

Most Read

Latest from the Gravesend Reporter

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists