Hidden ancient forest discovered at bottom of huge sinkhole in China

Last updated at 05:37
Forest in Baise in ChinaGetty Images
The hidden forest was found in China's Guangxi region

Scientists have found an entire forest hidden at the bottom of a giant sinkhole in China!

The discovery was made earlier this month in the south of the country by explorers who found three cave entrances.

Experts say the sinkhole contains lots of ancient trees and plants, some of which are 40 metres tall.

They also believe that it could include some new plant and animal species that have never been seen before.

What did scientists find?
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Cave explorers alerted scientists after coming across the sinkhole in China's Guangxi region.

The massive sinkhole is 306 metres long and nearly 200 metres deep!

Scientists hiked for hours to reach the base of the sinkhole to see what it contained.

They found that the site had three caves in its walls and a well-preserved primitive forest at the bottom.

Chen Lixin, who led the expedition team, told the state news agency Xinhua that as well as the tall trees there was dense undergrowth on the floor that came up to his shoulders.

Experts also believe that the forest in the sinkhole could lead to the discovery of new plant and animal species.

Chen added: "I wouldn't be surprised to know that there are species found in these caves that have never been reported or described by science until now."

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