Mammoth Sighted in Northern NY

Enthusiasts claim: “Proof in our time”

The latest, in a series of woolly mammoth sightings, was reported outside the town of Chazy in upstate NY this week. “We came very close this time to having the physical evidence we need to get the Department of Environmental Conservation  (En Con) to accept the truth of this and do something,” said Kevin Poter of Citizens for Mammoth Protection. “En Con has always denied the existence of the mammoth no matter how many fuzzy photographs and eyewitness sightings they get. They are obviously afraid of the truth. Admitting there are mammoths would mean a state agency would have to admit they are wrong. And they just can’t bring themselves to do that, now can they? Because if En Con were to admit they were wrong, and they most certainly are, they would have to protect the mammoths. And that would get them in trouble with their corporate masters. It’s a conspiracy, that’s what it is. Well I’m here to tell you that living, breathing, mammoths are out there whether En Con wants to admit it or not.”

A mammoth and a native person living in harmony, circa 12,000 BC

Paleontologists believe that both the mastodon and the mammoth disappeared some 10,000 years ago with the rest of the Pleistocene megafauna. Any claimed sightings are considered sheer fantasy, delusions, or just some prankster pulling our collective leg.  “Another mammoth sighting? What did you find this time? A big footprint? Some guy off the side of the road at 2 am drunk out of his mind who claims one ran out in front of him and that’s why he smashed up his truck?” scoffed Dr. Paula Ashter, head of The Institute for The Search For Long Since Dead Megafauna. “I’ve been in this business for over 20 years now and I can tell you I’ve seen it all. Next you’ll be telling me some joker claims she’s seen a mountain lion in the Adirondacks. That’s a stitch. If I had a nickle for every one of these sightings, I wouldn’t have to spend half my time looking for grant money to fund this dead-end job.”

The continued existence of the mammoth is controversial in part because no actual physical evidence of a live specimen has yet to surface.  “If they were out there somebody, somewhere would have at least stepped in a gigantic turd by now,” remarked Dr. Ashter.  “But we have yet to see the dirty sneaker to prove it.” Indeed some argue that, almost certainly, any mammoth sightings are more probably sightings of the similar, but less well known, mastodon. “It’s a common mistake,” explained Sheila Voop, president of Mastodon Now. “But they are really very different species. Any resemblance is strictly superficial.  Mastodons are browsers while mammoths are grazers. They’re not even in the same genus for gosh sakes. I mean really. I very much doubt anyone has seen a mammoth around here. We don’t have the grasslands to support them. A mastodon, though; now that’s a very different thing all together. They like to nibble on leaves and twigs. We’ve got plenty of that around here. One just last year ate my favorite lilac right to the ground. I have some photos somewhere of the poor thing. I just wish I could remember where the heck I put them.”

The mastodon: oft neglected cousin to the mammoth

Most scientists argue that humans were likely a significant cause of the demise of both species. Native groups however bristle at that explanation. “Our ancestors lived in harmony with nature,” said Tina Two Smokes, researcher with the Ancient Peoples Were in Harmony with Nature Foundation. “They only took from nature as much as they needed. If there was a decline in the mammoth or mastodon population our ancestors would have reacted quickly by banning hunting and instituting a breeding program. We have no evidence of any of that happening so it follows that mastodons and mammoths must still be around today. They’re probably just really good at hiding. How else could they have survived all this time?”

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