Mean atmospheric O2
Geologic Time Scale
Platybelodon in stream
A pair of 3-ton herbivorous proboscidean mammals--a male and female--of the genus Platybelodon follow a shallow stream 9 million years ago in what is today North America. Sharing the scene are stilts (genus Himantopus) foraging for insects and small crustaceans.
Related to modern elephants, Platybelodon were approximately the same size, and in addition to upper tusks they had a pair of flattened "shovel" tusks on their lower jaw. These lower tusks may have been used to scoop up aquatic and semi-aquatic vegetation and/or scrape edible bark from trees. Platybelodon fossils have been found in North America, Eurasia and Africa. This genus became extinct about 6 million years ago.
Copyright © Walter B. Myers. All rights reserved.
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