Wool mammoth


October 18, 2021

The wool mammoth (Mammuthus primigenius) is a mammoth species that lived in the arotundra, which was widespread during the ice age. Usually when we talk about mammoths we mean wool mammoths. The wool mammoth had a long, dense, and thick coat and huge incisors that curved over his head. Mammoth carcasses sunk into the swamp have been found in Siberia. The wool mammoth ate mainly hay and mistletoe plants and some tree buds.


The height at the withers of the wool mammoth male was usually 2.7 to 3.4 meters, which is the same as that of the largest living mammal, the African elephant, that lives today. Thus, the mammoths weighed 3 to 6 tons. The wool mammoth weighed perhaps about 90 kg at birth and was 90 cm high. The male became full-sized only at the age of 40 and the female at the age of 25. The wool mammoth lived up to 60 years old. The ears of the woolly mammoth were small and covered only 1/15 of the ears of an African elephant. The tusks needed to defend and dig food under the snow made the head heavy, so its weight-bearing neck had to be short. For this reason, the mammoth was unable to bend his head to the ground, but lifted the food into his mouth with the help of his snout. Of the current elephant animals, the wool mammoth resembled the Asian elephant the most. The wool mammoth had a neck hump, which is also the case with an Asian elephant.

Adaptations to the cold

The wool mammoth was well adapted to the cold Arctic conditions. Although the surviving furs of the mammoths are orange, it is probably a fading of dark brown or black. Mammut had a thin woolen, 2.5–8 cm thick undercoat and a top coat consisting of very thick line-like hair. The turkey covered the whole body. The hair on the tip was only a few centimeters long, but on the back 30 cm long, and the sides had a 90 cm long hem in the same way as a musk ox. Probably the mammoth swapped out the long winter coat described above, and the summer coat was presumably a little shorter. All the surviving frozen mammoths have winter fur and are probably dead in the fall, and no summer fur specimens have survived. The mammoth had a 1–2-centimeter-thick skin and an 8–10-cm-thick layer of fat underneath, which, however, was not as good a thermal insulator as wool. The Mammut, discovered in the New Siberian Islands in 2013, suggested that the mammoth's blood would have remained fluid up to 17 degrees below zero thanks to the natural antifreeze in it.


The mammoth family groups consisted of females, the males lived alone or in small groups of bachelors. The mammoth family groups consisted of 2 to 20 individuals: old females and their offspring. The most common group of mammoths was 10 individuals.


Judging from the stomach finds of surviving mammoths, the wool mammoth mostly ate grass, hazelnuts, grasses, sparrows, shrubs, and moss. In addition, mammoths ate flowering plants, ferns, roots, and edible parts of trees. The mammoth's daily meal was usually 135-300 kg of various grassy plants. According to more conservative estimates, the mammoth would have eaten only 180-250 kg per day. The mammoth may have spent up to 20 hours a day eating. The digestion of the wool mammoth was fairly simple and at least half of the food went undigested through the gut. On the other hand, the wool mammoth was able to utilize a fairly varied diet. Mammoths do not usually seem to have eaten the leaves of the trees, but their j�

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