The Saber Tooth Tiger ( Smilodon) has been a popular character in Disney’s movie “Ice Age” since it represents one of the most extinct animals in history. It is categorized as belonging to the subfamily machairodontine saber-toothed cats . This group of cats were believed…
Although it was believed to have existed for more than 10.000 years ago, its fossils were only found in 1841. Sabertooth tigers were carnivorous animals as explained by Michael Henderson, paleontologist and curator of earth sciences at the Burpee Museum of Natural History in Rockford. These animals were efficient-killing machines and preyed on deer, bison, ground sloths, mastodon and even small mammoths. Their 7 inch-long teeth proved helpful in their hunt for bigger animals. In fact:
"Saber-toothed cats came up with an efficient way to dispatch their prey by evolving enlarged canines. Big cats, such as lions and tigers, often kill their prey by suffocating it. They bite down on the neck of their prey and cut off its air supply. ( qtd. from “Oversized Teeth Helped Saber” 1).
The La Brea Tar Pits in California is a testimony of how smilodons were trapped while feeding on mammoths. The extinction of the saber tooth has been a puzzle to many scientists up to now. One hypothesis for its extinction is the end of Ice Age. According to Anton ( 2002 ) “Pliocene also brought a significant decline among the machairodont cats. From the variety of genera existing during the late Miocene (Machairodus, Paramachairodus, Metailurus), only the large metailurine Dinofelis persisted In their turn, the group of modern felids with conical canines increased their diversity with the appearance of the first members of the Lynx group ( p.213). In short, the saber-tooth cannot adapt anymore to its environment that is why other feline species replaced it.
Humans, that’s what homo sapiens are. Bipedal primates that belong to Hominidae, the great ape family. Homo sapiens were known as hunter gatherers before the introduction of domestic farming came about. They were nomads who travelled from one place to another in search for food. Homo sapiens know how to use tools to defend themselves or to stage an attack on a prey which is usually an animal. The vegetation of ...
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