Ancient deer-shaped rock paintings found in Gansu, China

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Deer-shaped rock paintings said to be about 3,500-year-old are discovered in Yugur Autonomous county of Sunan in Northwest China's Gansu province, which provide basis for studying the ecological environment of ancient Qilian Mountains. [Photo by Huang Minjiang for]

Du said, "The deer in the rock painting is one of the animals witnessed by the ancestors. Different types of deer have a relatively preferred living environment and are highly depend on changing vegetation. Most of them live in tundra, forest areas, deserts, shrubs and swamps. Deer rock paintings provide direct historical climate evidence not only for the calculation of approximate time of the deer living in the Hexi Corridor, but also for the research of ancient Qilian Mountain ecological environment and the living conditions of the herdsmen."

Up to now, among the rock paintings discovered in the Qilian Mountain, 86 pieces (nearly 5,000 rock paintings) were found in the Yumu Mountain. Most of these rock paintings are preserved intact, and most of the pictures are animal figures. The Yumu Mountain, the most concentrated range found in the Qilian Mountains, is also a rare open-air rock painting museum.

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