Gillette, David D. Geology and Paleontology Department, Museum of Northern Arizona, Flagstaff, Arizona.
Last reviewed:July 2021
- Mammoth classification
- Adaptations for large size
- Evolution of mammoths
- Mammoth trunks, tusks, and teeth
- Important sites with mammoth bones
- Coexistence of mammoths and humans
- Mammoths and the birth of scientific expeditions in North America
- Art of mammoths
- Tools and shelters fashioned by early mammoth hunters
- Dwarf mammoths survived into the Holocene Epoch
- Extinction of mammoths caused by humans or natural processes
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
A lineage of true elephants in the extinct genus Mammuthus that occupied Eurasia and North America in the late Cenozoic Era. Mammoths (genus Mammuthus) are extinct elephants assigned to the mammalian order Proboscidea (Fig. 1). They inhabited Eurasia and North America in the Pliocene, Pleistocene, and Holocene epochs in the late Cenozoic Era, starting at approximately 3 million years ago. Mammoths are the largest examples of extinct Ice Age megafauna. Modern elephants in Africa and Asia are smaller relatives of mammoths. Until the great Ice Age extinctions reached a climax around 11,000 years ago, mammoths and humans lived together throughout Asia and Europe and, for a shorter interval, in North America. See also: Cenozoic; Elephant; Extinction; Holocene; Paleontology; Pleistocene; Pliocene; Proboscidea
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