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Mastodon

genus of mammals (fossil)

Mastodons or Mastodonts are elephants of the extinct genus Mammut and the family Mammutidae. Mastodons became extinct about 11,000 years ago.

Mastodon
Temporal range: late Miocene – late Pleistocene, 5.3–0.011 mya
Mammut skeleton Museum of the Earth.jpg
Mounted mastodon skeleton, Museum of the Earth.
Scientific classification
Kingdom:
Phylum:
Class:
Order:
Family:
Mammutidae

Hay, 1922
Genus:
Mammut

American mastodon molars at the State Museum of Pennsylvania

Mastodons, with mammoths, modern elephants and various older families, are members of the order Proboscidea. As adults they stood between 2.5 and 3 meters (8-10 feet) at the shoulder and weighed between 3500 and 5400 kilograms (4-6 tons).

Mastodons were browsers on leaves and branches, as shown by their molar teeth.

Recent discoveryEdit

Stone tools and bones from a butchered mastodon were found at the bottom of a river in Florida. After a four-year investigation, researchers decided that humans lived there and made a meal of a mastodon 14,550 years ago.[1]

ReferencesEdit

  1. Webb, Jonathan 2016. Mastodon meal scraps revise US prehistory. BBC News Science & Environment. [1]