I am tired of seeing lists with the Dodo and the Saber tooth, we all know about these oft repeated extinct animals. So here is a list where all the animals mentioned are unique, long gone and interesting. Here goes, the top 10 extinct animals you didn’t know about.
Picture a sloth, they are small and very lazy right? Well not the Megatherium, which was an ancestor to our modern sloth. These were elephant sized sloths living in South American once a upon a time. They weighed upto 4 tonnes and got as high as 6m. So roughly the size of todays elephants. Luckily for everyone else they were herbivores and used the claws for digging and self defense only. Its our fault they don’t exist anymore, as early human hunters drove these creatures to extinction as their slow speed allowed for easy kills, and the large size gave a lot of food.
These giant birds, were the largest predatory birds in existence. Having earned the nickname “Terror birds”, they were known to grow into extremely large forms. Due to their size they were flightless, but still were the largest ambust predators in that time and the area which was South America.
These were the largest bears to ever exist. Their faces were characterised by being short. They could weight upto 2,000 kg. Making them potentially the largest carnivorous land mammals to ever exist. They were also one of the few creatures who could fight and win against the famed Saber Toothed cats. They could also stand on thier hind legs, must have been a terrifying sight.
You wanted a unicorn, here you go. These guys are just less nice looking. These are the giant rhinoceros of Euroasia. Their massive horns were used for digging, fighting and attracting mates. They were also herbivores. They had legs adapted for galloping, so yes they could charge really well as well. There have been numerous sightings of this creature going as early as the cave paintings to the 1800’s. They were roaming the earth at around the same time as the famous Woolly Rhinoceros.
Contrary to the name they weren’t exclusively Irish, rather they were spread out across Europe and Asia. They were among the largest deer who ever lived, thats why they are sometimes called “The Great Deer”. Their antlers were extremely large, and scientists are still not sure today why that was. And that very reason is attributed to their extinction as the antlers could have been more harm then god. But once again human hunting had a major role to play as well and also declining quality of food available to them. They are also thought to live on through legend in the Nibelungenlied which is an epic poem in Middle High German about a dragon hunter. They are also being considered for being de-extinction (via cloning), an amazing world we live in.
This is the ancestor of the modern camel. Their giraffe like necks caused their heads to be as high as 3 m above ground. They also had no direct competition and died out simple due to climate change. They dwelled in North American mostly.
These extremely large armored mammals who were relatives of the armadillos were the size of Volkswagen Beetles. Yes, they were huge. They were herbivores. And they got extinct because of human hunting as well, humans even used their massive shells as shelter from rain.
Or known as Cygnus falconeri, they were larger than Dwarf elephants. But this would have probably stripped away their ability to fly. And for once they weren’t extinct because of humans, rather due to climate change and other superior hunters. Not much else is known about them.
These are the largest form of lions to ever exist, they were 25% larger than the modern lions we have today. Also one of my favorite extinct animals. They pretty much preyed on almost every other mammal out there, and also showed a degree of intelligence. But they were less well built than the Saber Tooth cats (who were also their direct competitors along with Dire Wolves). They got extinct due to climate change, and ofcourse human hunting was the final nail on the coffin.
To conclude today’s theme of super large animals. We go for the Megalodon or the “Big Tooth”. These were huge sharks living roughly 2-13 million years ago. Growing as long as 18m, these were the apex predators (top of the food chain predators). They also had a tendency towards cannibalism. They got extinct due to declining food supplies, as large sea creatures started declining by the end of the Miocene.
Also I love historical things, creepy stuff, and videogames.
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