Elasmotherium


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Elasmotherium

 

a genus of fossil rhinoceroses that lived in the Pleistocene. The animals measured approximately 4.5 m in length and about 2 m in height at the withers. The skull had sharply pointed nasal bones, widely spaced eye sockets, and a large dome-shaped frontal portion covered by thick skin. It may well have had a large horn. Incisors and canine teeth were absent. The premolars and molars (five or six in each half of the jaw) were very high and hypsodont, with complex folds of enamel. The extremities had three toes.

Members of the genus probably lived in the steppe, in river valleys, and near lakes. They fed on comparatively coarse vegetation. They were widely distributed in southern Siberia and the European part of the USSR, where there are numerous remains.

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Washington, June 22 ( ANI ): Although modern Indian and Javan rhinos have a single horn on their noses, the extinct one-horned rhino Elasmotherium was a source of the unicorn legend because it had a two meter-long horn on its forehead and lived with prehistoric humans that drew its image on cave paintings.
All other elasmotheres had a weak or strong nasal horn, whereas Elasmotherium lost its ancestral nasal horn and instead developed a long frontal horn.
The skull has connected a large posterior nasofrontal horn boss and a smaller frontal horn boss, indicating an intermediate stage to the single frontal horn of Elasmotherium.
Morphological and phylogenetic analyses confirm that Sinotherium is a transitional taxon between Elasmotherium and other elasmotheres.
FACE TO FACE: Nigel Marven gets a close look at a T Rex, while two of the creatures get to grips in a fierce fight' ON THE RUN: Nigel Marven struggles to get away from an Elasmotherium