World's 5th-oldest yew tree discovered in Turkey

World's 5th-oldest yew tree discovered in Turkey

A 4112-year-old yew tree that was recently discovered in the northern province of Zonguldak is set to be declared a natural monument and opened to tourism, Hurriet reports.

The Gümeli forests, which are often seen as the 'terrace' of the coal-mining province, cover the 1637-meter-high Bacaklı and Bölüklü highland areas. The forests are home to very old trees, including many yew trees between the ages of 300 and 500. 

The age of the yew tree, which was found in the Gümeli forests and whose samples were sent to the Karadeniz Technical University Forestry Faculty, was dated to 4112 years – an age that predates the rise of Babylon. It is reported that the tree is one of the five oldest trees in the world.

"The tree is the only living thing in Anatolia since the Bronze Age," the Forestry Minister Veysel Eroğlu said.

"We applied to Karadeniz Technical University academic Ercan Oktan. He came to the forest with his team and took samples. They examined it in the laboratory and found that the tree is 4,112 years old. They said it could live 4,000 more years unless it is subjected to damage," Zonguldak Nature Conservation and National Parks Branch Director, Sezgin Örmeci, said