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A mammoth is any
species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classification, classification and a taxonomic rank of an organism, as well as a unit of biodiversity. A species is often defined as the largest group of organisms in which any two individu ...

species
of the
extinct Extinction is the termination of a kind of organism or of a group of kinds (taxon), usually a species. The moment of extinction is generally considered to be the death of the endling, last individual of the species, although the Functional extin ...
elephantid
genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank In biological classification In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure ...
''Mammuthus'', one of the many genera that make up the
order Order or ORDER or Orders may refer to: * Orderliness Orderliness is associated with other qualities such as cleanliness Cleanliness is both the abstract state of being clean and free from germs, dirt, trash, or waste, and the habit of achieving a ...
of trunked
mammal Mammals (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman Republ ...
s called
proboscidea The Proboscidea (, from the Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximat ...

proboscidea
ns. The various species of mammoth were commonly equipped with long, curved
tusks Tusks are elongated, continuously growing front teeth that protrude well beyond the mouth of certain mammal species. They are most commonly canine tooth, canine teeth, as with pigs, hippos, and walruses, or, in the case of elephants, elongated inc ...

tusks
and, in northern species, a covering of long
hair Hair is a protein filament In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular biology, molecular interactions, Phy ...

hair
. They lived from the
Pliocene The Pliocene ( ; also Pleiocene) is the epoch in the that extends from 5.333 million to 2.58epoch In chronology 222px, Joseph Scaliger's ''De emendatione temporum'' (1583) began the modern science of chronology Chronology (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-E ...
(from around 5 million years ago) into the
Holocene The Holocene ( ) is the current Geologic time scale, geological epoch. It began approximately 11,650 radiocarbon calibration, cal years Before Present, before present, after the last glacial period, which concluded with the Holocene glacial re ...
at about 4,000 years ago, and various species existed in Africa, Europe, Asia, and North America. They were members of the family
Elephantidae The Elephantidae are a family In human society, family (from la, familia) is a group of people related either by consanguinity (by recognized birth) or affinity (by marriage or other relationship). The purpose of families is to maintain t ...
, which also contains the two genera of modern
elephant Elephants are the largest existing land animals. Three living species are currently recognised: the African bush elephant, the African forest elephant, and the Asian elephant. They are an paraphyly, informal grouping within the proboscidean F ...

elephant
s and their ancestors. Mammoths are more closely related to living
Asian elephants
Asian elephants
than
African Elephants The African elephant (''Loxodonta'') is a Genus (biology), genus comprising two living elephant species, the African bush elephant (''L. africana'') and the smaller African forest elephant (''L. cyclotis''). Both are social herbivores with grey ...

African Elephants
. The oldest representative of ''Mammuthus'', the
South African mammoth
South African mammoth
(''M. subplanifrons''), appeared around 5 million years ago during the early
Pliocene The Pliocene ( ; also Pleiocene) is the epoch in the that extends from 5.333 million to 2.58woolly mammoth
woolly mammoth
(''M. primigenius''), developed about 400,000 years ago in East Asia, with some surviving on Russia's
Wrangel Island Wrangel Island ( rus, О́стров Вра́нгеля, r=Ostrov Vrangelya, p=ˈostrəf ˈvrangʲɪlʲə; ckt, Умӄиԓир, translit=Umqiḷir) is an island in the Arctic Ocean The Arctic Ocean is the smallest and shallowest of the ...

Wrangel Island
in the
Arctic Ocean The Arctic Ocean is the smallest and shallowest of the world's five major s. It spans an area of approximately and is also known as the coldest of all the oceans. The (IHO) recognizes it as an ocean, although some call it the Arctic Medit ...

Arctic Ocean
until as recently as roughly 3,700 to 4,000 years ago, still extant during the construction of the
Great Pyramid The Great Pyramid of Giza (also known as the Pyramid of Khufu or the Pyramid of Cheops) is the oldest and largest of the pyramids A pyramid (from el, πυραμίς ') is a structure whose outer surfaces are triangular and converge to a s ...

Great Pyramid
of
ancient Egypt Ancient Egypt was a of , concentrated along the lower reaches of the , situated in the place that is now the country . Ancient Egyptian civilization followed and coalesced around 3100 (according to ) with the political unification of u ...

ancient Egypt
.


Evolution

The earliest known proboscideans, the
clade A clade (), also known as a monophyletic group or natural group, is a group of organism In biology, an organism () is any organic, life, living system that functions as an individual entity. All organisms are composed of cells (cell t ...

clade
that contains the elephants, existed about 55 million years ago around the
Tethys Sea 250px, First phase of the Tethys Ocean's forming: the (first) Tethys Sea starts dividing Pangaea into two supercontinents, Laurasia and Gondwana">Laurasia.html" ;"title="Pangaea into two supercontinents, Laurasia">Pangaea into two supercontinents, ...
area. The closest relatives of the Proboscidea are the
sirenians The Sirenia (), commonly referred to as sea-cows or sirenians, are an order (biology), order of fully aquatic, herbivorous mammals that inhabit swamps, rivers, estuaries, marine wetlands, and coastal marine waters. The Sirenia currently compris ...
and the
hyrax Hyraxes (from grc, ὕραξ, translit=hýrax, "shrew Shrews ( family Soricidae) are small mole-like mammals Mammals (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Ind ...

hyrax
es. The family
Elephantidae The Elephantidae are a family In human society, family (from la, familia) is a group of people related either by consanguinity (by recognized birth) or affinity (by marriage or other relationship). The purpose of families is to maintain t ...
is known to have existed six million years ago in Africa, and includes the living elephants and the mammoths. Among many now extinct clades, the
mastodon A mastodon ( Greek: μαστός "breast" and ὀδούς, "tooth") is any proboscidean belonging to the extinct genus ''Mammut'' (family Mammutidae) that inhabited North and Central America during the late Miocene The Miocene ( ) is the first ...

mastodon
is only a distant relative of the mammoths, and part of the separate
Mammutidae Mammutidae is an extinct family In human society, family (from la, familia) is a group of people related either by consanguinity (by recognized birth) or affinity (by marriage or other relationship). The purpose of families is to mainta ...
family, which diverged 25 million years before the mammoths evolved. The following
cladogram A cladogram (from Greek ''clados'' "branch" and ''gramma'' "character") is a diagram used in cladistics Cladistics (, from Greek language, Greek , ''kládos'', "branch") is an approach to Taxonomy (biology), biological classification in whi ...

cladogram
shows the placement of the genus ''Mammuthus'' among other proboscideans, based on
hyoid The hyoid bone (lingual bone or tongue-bone) () is a horseshoe , and are nailed to the underside of the hoof A horseshoe is a fabricated product, normally made of metal, although sometimes made partially or wholly of modern synthetic materials, ...
characteristics: Since many remains of each species of mammoth are known from several localities, it is possible to reconstruct the evolutionary history of the genus through morphological studies. Mammoth species can be identified from the number of enamel ridges on their molars; the primitive species had few ridges, and the amount increased gradually as new species evolved and replaced the former ones. At the same time, the crowns of the teeth became longer, and the skulls become higher from top to bottom and shorter from the back to the front over time to accommodate this. The first known members of the genus ''Mammuthus'' are the African species ''
Mammuthus subplanifrons ''Mammuthus subplanifrons'', the South African Mammoth, is the oldest representative of the genus '' Mammuthus'', appearing around 5 million years ago during the early Pliocene The Pliocene ( ; also Pleiocene) Epoch is the epoch in the geol ...

Mammuthus subplanifrons
'' from the
Pliocene The Pliocene ( ; also Pleiocene) is the epoch in the that extends from 5.333 million to 2.58Mammuthus africanavus The African mammoth, ''Mammuthus africanavus'' (literally, "African ancestor mammoth"), is the second oldest mammoth species, having first appeared around 3 million years ago during the late Pliocene, with a last appearance around 1.65 million y ...
'' from the
Pleistocene The Pleistocene ( , often referred to as the ''Ice Age'') is the geological epoch In chronology 222px, Joseph Scaliger's ''De emendatione temporum'' (1583) began the modern science of chronology Chronology (from Latin Latin (, or , ) ...
. The former is thought to be the ancestor of later forms. Mammoths entered Europe around 3 million years ago; the earliest known type has been named ''M. rumanus'', which spread across Europe and China. Only its molars are known, which show it had 8–10 enamel ridges. A population evolved 12–14 ridges and split off from and replaced the earlier type, becoming '' M. meridionalis''. In turn, this species was replaced by the steppe mammoth, '' M. trogontherii'', with 18–20 ridges, which evolved in East Asia ca. 1.8 million years ago. Steppe mammoth populations replaced '' M. meridionalis'' in Europe between 1 and 0.7 million years ago. The Columbian mammoth, '' M. columbi'', evolved from a population of ''M. trogontherii'' that had entered North America over 1 million years ago. Mammoths derived from ''M. trogontherii'' evolved molars with 26 ridges between 800,000 and 400,000 years ago in Siberia, becoming the , ''M. primigenius''. The woolly mammoth would replace the steppe mammoth in Europe during the late Middle Pleistocene around 200,000 years ago. A 2011 genetic study showed that two examined specimens of the Columbian mammoth were grouped within a subclade of woolly mammoths. This suggests that the two populations interbred and produced fertile offspring. It also suggested that a North American form known as "''M. jeffersonii''" may be a hybrid between the two species. By the late Pleistocene, mammoths in continental Eurasia had undergone a major transformation, including a shortening and heightening of the cranium and mandible, increase in molar hypsodonty index, increase in plate number, and thinning of dental enamel. Due to this change in physical appearance, it became customary to group European mammoths separately into distinguishable clusters: # Early Pleistocene – ''Mammuthus meridionalis'' # Middle Pleistocene – ''Mammuthus trogontherii'' # Late Pleistocene – ''Mammuthus primigenius'' There is speculation as to what caused this variation within the three chronospecies. Variations in environment, climate change, and migration surely played roles in the evolutionary process of the mammoths. Take ''M. primigenius'' for example: Woolly mammoths lived in opened grassland biomes. The cool steppe-tundra of the Northern Hemisphere was the ideal place for mammoths to thrive because of the resources it supplied. With occasional warmings during the ice age, climate would change the landscape, and resources available to the mammoths altered accordingly. In February 2021, scientists reported that
DNA Deoxyribonucleic acid (; DNA) is a molecule File:Pentacene on Ni(111) STM.jpg, A scanning tunneling microscopy image of pentacene molecules, which consist of linear chains of five carbon rings. A molecule is an electrically neutral gro ...

DNA
from million-year old mammoth had become the oldest ever
sequenced In genetics Genetics is a branch of biology concerned with the study of genes, genetic variation, and heredity in organisms.Hartl D, Jones E (2005) Though heredity had been observed for millennia, Gregor Mendel, Moravia, Moravian scientist ...

sequenced
.


Etymology and early observations

The word ''mammoth'' was first used in Europe during the early 17th century, when referring to ''maimanto'' tusks discovered in Siberia. John Bell, who was on the
Ob River The Ob ( rus, Обь, p=opʲ: Ob') is a major river in Russia. It is in western Siberia; and together with Irtysh forms the world's List of rivers by length, seventh-longest river system, at . It forms at the confluence of the Biya (river), Biya a ...

Ob River
in 1722, said that mammoth tusks were well known in the area. They were called "mammon's horn" and were often found in washed-out river banks. Some local people claimed to have seen a living mammoth, but they came out only at night and always disappeared under water when detected. He bought one and presented it to Hans Sloan who pronounced it an elephant's tooth. The folklore of some native peoples of Siberia, who would routinely find mammoth bones, and sometimes frozen mammoth bodies, in eroding river banks, had various interesting explanations for these finds. Among the
Khanty people The Khanty (in older literature: Ostyaks) are a Ugrian indigenous people calling themselves ''Khanti, Khande, Kantek'' (Khanty), living in Khanty–Mansi Autonomous Okrug, a region historically known as "Yugra" in Russia, together with the Man ...
of the
Irtysh River The Irtysh ( otk, 𐰼𐱅𐰾:𐰇𐰏𐰕𐰏, Ertis ügüzüg, mn, Эрчис мөрөн, ''Erchis mörön'', "erchleh", "twirl"; russian: Иртыш; kk, Ертіс, Ertis, ; Chinese: 额尔齐斯河, pinyin ''Hanyu Pinyin'' (), oft ...
basin, a belief existed that the mammoth was some kind of a water spirit. According to other Khanty, the mammoth was a creature that lived underground, burrowing its tunnels as it went, and would die if it accidentally came to the surface. The concept of the mammoth as an underground creature was known to the Chinese, who received some mammoth ivory from the Siberian natives; accordingly, the creature was known in China as ''yǐn shǔ'' 隐鼠, "the hidden rodent".
Thomas Jefferson Thomas Jefferson (April 13, 1743 – July 4, 1826) was an American statesman, diplomat, lawyer, architect, philosopher, and Founding Father The following list of national founding figures is a record, by country, of people who were cr ...

Thomas Jefferson
, who famously had a keen interest in
paleontology Paleontology (), also spelled palaeontology or palæontology, is the scientific study of life that existed prior to, and sometimes including, the start of the Holocene epoch (geology), epoch (roughly 11,700 years before present). It includes th ...
, is partially responsible for transforming the word ''mammoth'' from a noun describing the prehistoric elephant to an adjective describing anything of surprisingly large size. The first recorded use of the word as an adjective was in a description of a large wheel of cheese (the " Cheshire Mammoth Cheese") given to Jefferson in 1802.Simpson, J. (2009).
Word Stories: Mammoth
" ''Oxford English Dictionary Online'', Oxford University Press. Accessed 05-JUN-2009.


Description

Like their modern relatives, mammoths were quite large. The largest known species reached heights in the region of at the shoulder and weights of up to , while exceptionally large males may have exceeded . However, most species of mammoth were only about as large as a modern (which are about 2.5 m to 3 m high at the shoulder, and rarely exceeding 5 tonnes). Both sexes bore tusks. A first, small set appeared at about the age of six months, and these were replaced at about 18 months by the permanent set. Growth of the permanent set was at a rate of about per year. Based on studies of their close relatives, the modern elephants, mammoths probably had a
gestationGestation is the period of development during the carrying of an embryo An embryo is the early stage of development of a multicellular organism. In general, in organism In biology, an organism (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ὀργανι ...
period of 22 months, resulting in a single calf being born. Their social structure was probably the same as that of
African African(s) may refer to: * Anything from or pertaining to the continent of Africa: ** People who are native to Africa, descendants of natives of Africa, or individuals who trace their ancestry to indigenous inhabitants of Africa *** Ethnic groups ...

African
and Asian elephants, with females living in herds headed by a matriarch, whilst bulls lived solitary lives or formed loose groups after sexual maturity. Scientists discovered and studied the remains of a mammoth calf, and found that fat greatly influenced its form, and enabled it to store large amounts of nutrients necessary for survival in temperatures as low as . The fat also allowed the mammoths to increase their muscle mass, allowing the mammoths to fight against enemies and live longer.


Diet

Depending on the species or race of mammoth, the diet differed somewhat depending on location, although all mammoths ate similar things. For the Columbian mammoth, '''', the diet was mainly
grazing In agriculture Agriculture is the science, art and practice of cultivating plants and livestock. Agriculture was the key development in the rise of sedentism, sedentary human civilization, whereby farming of domestication, domesticated spec ...
. American Columbian mammoths fed primarily on cactus leaves, trees, and shrubs. These assumptions were based on mammoth feces and mammoth teeth. Mammoths, like modern day elephants, have hypsodont molars. These features also allowed mammoths to live an expansive life because of the availability of grasses and trees. For the Mongochen mammoth, its diet consisted of herbs, grasses, larch, and shrubs, and possibly
alder Alder is the common name of a genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank used in the biological classification of extant taxon, living and fossil organisms as well as Virus classification#ICTV classific ...

alder
. These inferences were made through the observation of mammoth feces, which scientists observed contained non-arboreal pollen and moss spores. European mammoths had a major diet of
C3 carbon fixation 300px, Calvin–Benson cycle carbon fixation is the most common of three metabolic pathways for carbon fixation in photosynthesis, along with C4 carbon fixation, and Crassulacean acid metabolism, CAM. This process converts carbon dioxide and r ...
plants. This was determined by examining the isotopic data from the European mammoth teeth. The arctic tundra and steppe where the mammoths lived appears to have been dominated by
forb A forb or phorb is a herbaceous Herbaceous plants are vascular plant Vascular plants (from Latin ''vasculum'': duct), also known as Tracheophyta (the tracheophytes , from the Greek ''trācheia''), form a large group of plants ( 300,000 accepte ...
s, not grass. There were richer in protein and easier to digest than grasses and wooden plants, which came to dominate the areas when the climate became wetter and warmer. This could have been a major contributor to why the arctic megafauna went extinct. The Yamal baby mammoth Lyuba, found in 2007 in the Yamal Peninsula in Western Siberia, suggests that baby mammoths, as do modern baby elephants, ate the dung of adult animals. The evidence to show this is that the dentition (teeth) of the baby mammoth had not yet fully developed to chew grass. Furthermore, there was an abundance of ascospores of coprophilous fungi from the pollen spectrum of the baby's mother. Coprophilous fungi are fungi that grow on animal dung and disperse spores in nearby vegetation, which the baby mammoth would then consume. Spores might have gotten into its stomach while grazing for the first few times. Coprophagy may be an
adaptation In , adaptation has three related meanings. Firstly, it is the dynamic evolutionary process that fits s to their environment, enhancing their . Secondly, it is a state reached by the population during that process. Thirdly, it is a or adapti ...

adaptation
, serving to populate the infant's gut with the needed
microbiome The word microbiome (from the Greek ''micro'' meaning "small" and ''bíos'' meaning "life") was first used by J.L. Mohr in 1952 in The Scientific Monthly to mean the microorganisms found in a specific environment. It was defined in 1988 by Whip ...
for digestion. Mammoths alive in the
Arctic The Arctic ( or ) is a located at the northernmost part of . The Arctic consists of the , adjacent seas, and parts of (), , , (), , , , and . Land within the Arctic region has seasonally varying snow and , with predominantly treeless ...

Arctic
during the
Last Glacial Maximum The Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), also referred to as the Late Glacial Maximum, was the most recent time during the Last Glacial Period that ice sheets In glaciology Lateral moraine on a glacier joining the Gorner Glacier, Zermatt">Gorner_Glac ...
consumed mainly
forb A forb or phorb is a herbaceous Herbaceous plants are vascular plant Vascular plants (from Latin ''vasculum'': duct), also known as Tracheophyta (the tracheophytes , from the Greek ''trācheia''), form a large group of plants ( 300,000 accepte ...
s, such as '' Artemisia'';
graminoid In botany Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science of plant life and a branch of biology. A botanist, plant scientist or phytologist is a scientist who specialises in this field. The term "botany" comes from the An ...
s were only a minor part of their diet.


Extinction

The (''M. primigenius'') was the last species of the genus. Most populations of the woolly mammoth in North America and Eurasia, as well as all the
Columbian mammoth The Columbian mammoth (''Mammuthus columbi'') is an extinct species of mammoth that inhabited the Americas as far north as the Northern United States and as far south as Costa Rica during the Pleistocene epoch. It was one of the last in a line ...

Columbian mammoth
s (''M. columbi'') in North America, died out around the time of the last
glacial retreat Image:Glacial lakes, Bhutan.jpg, 300px, Termini of the glaciers in the Bhutan-Himalaya. Glacial lakes have been rapidly forming on the surface of the debris-covered glaciers in this region during the last few decades. USGS researchers have found ...
, as part of a
mass extinction An extinction event (also known as a mass extinction or biotic crisis) is a widespread and rapid decrease in the biodiversity Biodiversity is the biological variety and Genetic variability, variability of life, life on Earth. Biodiversity is ...
of
megafauna In terrestrial zoology Zoology ()The pronunciation of zoology as is typically regarded as nonstandard, though it is not uncommon. is the branch of biology that studies the animal kingdom, including the anatomy, structure, embryology, evolutio ...
in northern Eurasia and the Americas. Until recently, the last woolly mammoths were generally assumed to have vanished from Europe and southern Siberia about 12,000 years ago, but new findings show some were still present there about 10,000 years ago. Slightly later, the woolly mammoths also disappeared from continental northern Siberia. A small population survived on St. Paul Island, Alaska, up until 3750 BC, and the small mammoths of
Wrangel Island Wrangel Island ( rus, О́стров Вра́нгеля, r=Ostrov Vrangelya, p=ˈostrəf ˈvrangʲɪlʲə; ckt, Умӄиԓир, translit=Umqiḷir) is an island in the Arctic Ocean The Arctic Ocean is the smallest and shallowest of the ...

Wrangel Island
survived until about 2000 BC Recent eDNA research of sediments indicates mammoths survived in north central Siberia at least as late as 2000 BC, in continental northeast Siberia until at least 5300 BC, and until at least 6600 BC in North America. A definitive explanation for their extinction has yet to be agreed upon. The warming trend (Holocene) that occurred 12,000 years ago, accompanied by a glacial retreat and rising sea levels, has been suggested as a contributing factor. Forests replaced open woodlands and grasslands across the continent. The available habitat would have been reduced for some megafaunal species, such as the mammoth. However, such climate changes were nothing new; numerous very similar warming episodes had occurred previously within the Quaternary glaciation, ice age of the last several million years without producing comparable megafaunal extinctions, so climate alone is unlikely to have played a decisive role. The spread of advanced human hunters through northern Eurasia and the Americas around the time of the extinctions, however, was a new development, and thus might have contributed significantly. Whether the general mammoth population died out for climatic reasons or due to overhunting by humans is controversial. During the transition from the Late Pleistocene epoch to the Holocene epoch, there was shrinkage of the distribution of the mammoth because progressive warming at the end of the Pleistocene epoch changed the mammoth's environment. The mammoth steppe was a periglacial landscape with rich herb and grass vegetation that disappeared along with the mammoth because of environmental changes in the climate. Mammoths had moved to isolated spots in Eurasia, where they disappeared completely. Also, it is thought that Late Paleolithic and Mesolithic human hunters might have affected the size of the last mammoth populations in Europe. There is evidence to suggest that humans did cause the mammoth extinction, although there is no definitive proof. It was found that humans living south of a mammoth steppe learned to adapt themselves to the harsher climates north of the steppe, where mammoths resided. It was concluded that if humans could survive the harsh north climate of that particular mammoth steppe then it was possible humans could hunt (and eventually extinguish) mammoths everywhere. Another hypothesis suggests mammoths fell victim to an infectious disease. A combination of Climate variability and change, climate change and hunting by humans may be a possible explanation for their extinction. ''Homo erectus'' is known to have consumed mammoth meat as early as 1.8 million years ago, though this may mean only successful scavenging, rather than actual hunting. Later humans show greater evidence for hunting mammoths; mammoth bones at a 50,000-year-old site in South Britain suggest that Neanderthals butchered the animals, while various sites in Eastern Europe dating from 15,000 to 44,000 years old suggest humans (probably ''Homo sapiens'') built dwellings using mammoth bones (the age of some of the earlier structures suggests that Neanderthals began the practice). However, the American Institute of Biological Sciences notes that bones of dead elephants, left on the ground and subsequently trampled by other elephants, tend to bear marks resembling butchery marks, which have allegedly been misinterpreted as such by Archaeology, archaeologists. Many hypotheses also seek to explain the regional extinction of mammoths in specific areas. Scientists have speculated that the mammoths of Saint Paul Island (Alaska), an isolated enclave where mammoths survived until about 8,000 years ago, died out as the island shrank by 80–90% when sea levels rose, eventually making it too small to support a viable population. Similarly, genome sequences of the Wrangel Island mammoths indicate a sharp decline in genetic diversity, though the extent to which this played a role in their extinction is still unclear. Another hypothesis, said to be the cause of mammoth extinction in Siberia, comes from the idea that many may have drowned. While traveling to the Northern River, many of these mammoths broke through the ice and drowned. This also explains bones remains in the Arctic Coast and some of the New Siberian Islands. Insular dwarfism, Dwarfing occurred with the pygmy mammoth on the outer Channel Islands of California, but at an earlier period. Those animals were very likely killed by early Paleo-Native Americans, and habitat loss caused by a rising sea level that split Santa Rosae into the outer Channel Islands.


Mammoth-elephant hybrid

One proposed scientific use of this preserved genetic material is to recreate living mammoths. This has long been discussed theoretically but has only recently become the subject of formal effort due to advances in molecular biology techniques and cloning of mammals.The Long Now Fouldation - Revive and Restore
According to one research team, a mammoth cannot be recreated, but they will try to eventually grow in an "artificial womb" a hybrid elephant with some woolly mammoth traits.The Mammoth Genome Project
Pennsylvania State University. Accessed: October 2018.
The outcome would be an elephant-mammoth hybrid with no more than 1% mammoth genes. Other projects are working on gradually adding mammoth genes to
elephant Elephants are the largest existing land animals. Three living species are currently recognised: the African bush elephant, the African forest elephant, and the Asian elephant. They are an paraphyly, informal grouping within the proboscidean F ...

elephant
cells ''in vitro''."Mammoth: Back from the Dead"
. ''National Geographic Channel''.


See also

* ''Genesis 2.0'', a documentary * Ivory trade#Mammoth ivory, Ivory trade * La Brea tar pits * List of mammoths * The Mammoth Site in Hot Springs, South Dakota * Niederweningen Mammoth Museum * Pleistocene Park * Waco Mammoth National Monument


References


Further reading

* * * * * * * * * * * * {{Authority control Mammoths, Cenozoic mammals of Africa Cenozoic mammals of Asia Cenozoic mammals of Europe Cenozoic mammals of North America Holocene extinctions Pleistocene proboscideans Prehistoric elephants Taxa named by Joshua Brookes Zanclean first appearances