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Palaeontological analyses, cave bear sampling and work visits in Chișinău, Sofia and Belgrade

Photo 1. Ionuț, Theodor Obadă, Marius and Viorica Pascari, at the Zoological Institute of the Moldavian Academy of Sciences

Photo 2. Alex working on the cave bear collection from the National Museum of Natural History from Sofia

Photo 3. Luchiana performing taphonomic analyses at the Natural History Museum from Belgrade.

Photo 4. Discussing future collaborative projects at the end of our working visit in Belgrade. From left to right: Dr. Sonja Vukovic, Dr. Luchiana Faur, Dr. Marius Robu and Dr. Vesna Dimitrijevic.

Dear friends,

It was a long and quiet period on our blog but a busy and intense period for INTEGRATE.

During the last months, Marius, Ionuț, Alex and Luchiana were at the Zoological Institute of the State University of the Republic of Moldova (Chișinău, Republic of Moldova), National Museum of Natural History (Sofia, Bulgaria) and University of Belgrade (Serbia). We are happy to announce that our tour was successful and we achieved all our scientific and collaborative goals. What's more, we are already planning return visits to further strengthen our partnerships.

Our hosts allowed us to study and sample the palaeontological collections of Late Pleistocene mammals, found in the karstic settings of the three neighbor countries. We warmly thank to Theodor Obadă, Dr. Latinka Hristova and Dr. Vesna Dimitrijevic for giving us the possibilities to expand our understanding of the Late Pleistocene cave bears and associated fauna, from our region.

We used a complex array of integrated investigation methods to disentangle the palaeoecology of mysterious cave bears - a taphonomic, morpho-osteometric, geochemical and radiometric approach. The results will be presented in the near future, no later than the end of next year.

Apart from studying new and very interesting cave bear populations, these visits were about connections with like-minded individuals in the scientific community, setting the stage for future collaborations.

Stay tuned for more exciting updates!

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