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SKEPTOID BLOG:

Miniature Skeleton: Not an alien

by Mike Weaver

May 14, 2013

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I saw this report last week. The buzz was up about Ata, a tiny (12cm) skeleton found about 10 years ago in the Atacama desert in Chile. The story of Ata has come to light with a recent UFO documentary, Sirius. The skeleton is quite bizarre looking, I must say. Happily for us, Stanford scientist Garry Nolan has examined the evidence and offers the facts. Spoiler: not an alien.


The article, in the Sydney Morning Herald by Richard Stone, that I read on this can be found here. Give it a read. The long and short: Nolan was allowed to examine the specimen by the filmmakers, who had exclusive rights to Ata. Nolan reached out to colleagues who were specialists in bone disorders, neonatal development, and related sciences for assistance with the remains. Further, DNA extraction experts were consulted to provide techniques for retrieving useful DNA from old samples. As it turned out, this was unnecessary.

"The DNA was modern, abundant, and high quality," he (Nolan) says, indicating that the specimen is probably a few decades old.
Nolan goes on to note:
that Ata "is human, there's no doubt about it".
There are still many open questions about poor, little Ata. What happened to him to make him this way? Was it a disease, a toxin, or a genetic ailment? The investigation continues. One thing we do know, he's not only human but local to the area in which he was found.

I love stories like this. Nature is more than capable of producing the odd, the strange, the seemingly supernatural. Mysteries abound, enough to satisfy the most curious of us and it is glorious.

Be Well

by Mike Weaver

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