Woolly Rhinoceros Tooth

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Woolly Rhinoceros Tooth
Coelodonta antiquitatis
Irkutsk, Siberia

The woolly rhinoceros was an extremely large mammal that lived in northern Asia and Europe during the Pleistocene. These megafauna could grow to 12 feet long and 6 feet high at the shoulders--about the same size as a modern white rhinoceros. The keratin horn that sprouted from the end of its nose grew to 3 feet long with a smaller horn between the eyes. The hump at the shoulder supported the long skull and horn and was used as a fat reserve to help it survive during the winters. The herbivorous woolly rhino thrived in the freezing cold of the Ice Age not only because of the hump but because of its extraordinarily thick, long hair. Its diet was seasonal and mainly consisted of ground vegetation like moss and flowers in the summer, and woody plants in the winter.

Coelodonta antiquitatis means "ancient cavity tooth" as the molar teeth of this prehistoric animal show deep, hollow cavities. The teeth had thick enamel with a high crown. Like other rhinos, woolly rhinoceroses had only premolars and molars, and no incisors. The color of this tooth is natural and has had no repairs. Fossils from the woolly rhinoceros are much rarer than those of mammoths. 



Size: ~ 2 x 1.63 x 1.88 inches

Weight: ~ 6 oz.