Extinct Mammals

While Mammoths and Saber Toothed Tigers died out long ago, modern mammals are increasingly at risk of extinction due to human intervention. Explore some species that are no longer with us.


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The Mastodon Graveyard That Stole Thomas Jefferson's Heart

During the last ice age, northern Kentucky was a swampy wetland teeming with mega-mammals.

The Now-extinct Castoroides Was a Bear-sized Beaver

The giant castoroides thrived in the Great Plains, the Great Lakes region, the American South and Alaska. So why did this massive beaver die out?

The Massive Titanoboa Snake Once Ruled the Colombian Rainforest

The extinct Titanoboa snake lived around 66 million to 56 million years ago. These things were massive and could reach 50 feet long and 3 feet wide making them the largest snake ever to have roamed the Earth.

Giant VW-sized Turtles Once Prowled South American Waters

Back in the day, the soupy pre-Amazonian waters were filled with beasts like Stupendemys geographicus, a giant turtle the size of a sensible sedan.

Prehistoric Predator Rediscovered in Museum Drawer

The fossilized remains of Simbakubwa kutokaafrika, which means "big lion from Africa," were discovered not once, but twice.

Scary Prehistoric 'Hell Pigs' Once Roamed the Earth

These super-frightening entelodonts (aka hell pigs) once patrolled throughout Eurasia, North America and Africa.

Fanged, Flying Reptiles Once Soared Over Jurassic England

Mid-Jurassic England was teeming with flighted creatures. Now we know it included one pterosaur called Klobiodon rochei.

How Two Rival Mammoths Lost an Epic Duel 12,000 Years Ago

The battle clearly ended in a slow death for both massive male beasts.

Prehistoric Turtle Had a Toothless Beak But No Shell

A 220 million-year-old turtle fossil discovered in China is the first of its kind ever to be found.

The Mastodon Boneyard That Stole Thomas Jefferson’s Heart

Massive mastodons roamed lower Kentucky during the last ice age. Jefferson was so fascinated by the creatures he was convinced they still roamed the plains in the 1800s.

Huge Cache of Pterosaur Eggs Discovered in China

Paleontologists in China hit the jackpot of fossilized pterosaur eggs.

Prehistoric Frog Had a Monstrous Bite

A new study found that the Beelzebufo frog had a bite strong enough to take down dinosaurs.

Prehistoric 'Hell Ant' Sported Metal Spike for Sucking Blood

Instead of a mouth, the hell ant had blades and a metal horn to catch its prey. Ouch.

New Study Sheds Light on How Plesiosaurs Used Their Flippers to Swim

A new study suggests the extinct aquatic reptiles used all four flippers for uniquely efficient underwater motion.

Boy Literally Stumbles Across Million-year-old Fossils During New Mexico Hike

Accidentally tripping on and discovering the fossilized skull of an extinct giant elephant seems like a 9-year-old's dream come true.

4-foot Flying Turkeys Roamed Ancient Australia

The megapodes were supertall, but that didn't keep them from taking flight.

Extinct Marsupial Lions Killed Prey in a Really Weird Way

The method this ancient carnivore employed is unlike anything we see in predators today.

Meet Gigantopithecus, the Extinct Giant Orangutan in 'The Jungle Book'

The character of King Louie gets a serious primate upgrade in the new Disney live-action-meets-CGI film. Did the ape also serve as inspiration for sasquatch and yeti?

New Clues to Why Bus-sized Giant Shark Megalodon Went Extinct

Scientists thought climate and ecological change was the culprit, but a new study suggests otherwise.

Fossils of Ancient Filter-feeding Fish Discovered in Colorado

The bony fish measured more than six feet long and ate prey using a filtering system similar to that of animals today.

Mastodons and Mammoths Gave Their Lives So You Could Have a Pumpkin Spice Latte

The extinction of ice age megafauna and the disappearance of their mammoth-sized poop allowed pumpkins to become what they are today.

Angry Vegetarian Saber-toothed Mammals Were Fighters Not Lovers

Scientists discover male animals flashed sabers far longer than first thought.

What's the difference between a mammoth and a mastodon?

Both of these massive prehistoric creatures belonged to the same family, but they're actually very different species.

Why were so many prehistoric animals so big?

If you've been curious about why dinosaurs and other prehistoric animals were so massive, know that paleontologists are still on the case.