This weird wrinkly brown leather ball is actually a 30,000-year-old squirrel

Miners found this strange wrinkly leather ball near Dawson City, Yukon in Canada and brought it to scientists to examine. After X-raying the object at a veterinarian's office, Yukon paleontologist Grant Zazula determined that it's the remains of a 30,000-year-old ground squirrel that apparently died while hibernating. See the X-ray below. The squirrel will soon be on display at the Yukon Beringia Interpretive Centre. From the Canadian Press/CTV News:

"Arctic ground squirrels are tiny of course, it's curled up in a ball, so just by looking at it it's hard to tell what it is," he said.

"But then, when you see the X-ray, you can see this curled-up skeleton, and the head, and the leg bones, and whatnot, and the tail, all curled up together and it looks amazing under the X-ray."

"The real value of them is really educational, because they really bring forward this ancient ice-age world," he said.

"Looking at bones is one thing, it's neat to look at bones, but seeing the mummified version of those animals from the past, just brings it to life."

image: Yukon Beringia Interpretive Centre