*SPECIAL NOTE* - Mammuthus imperator has now been found to be a synonym to Mammuthus columbi (Columbian mammoth). This page remains online for archive purposes.

Mammuthus imperator
a.k.a.‭ ‬Imperial mammoth

Name: Mammuthus imperator
Phonetic: Mam-mu-fus im-pe-ra-tor.
Named By: Joseph Leidy‭ ‬-‭ ‬1858.
Classification: Chordata,‭ ‬Mammalia,‭ ‬Proboscidea,‭ ‬Elephantidae,‭ ‬Mammuthus.
Species: M.‭ ‬imperator.
Diet: Herbivore.
Size: Up to‭ ‬4.9‭ ‬meters high at the shoulder.
Known locations: Across North America.
Time period: Zanclean of the Pliocene through to the end of the Pleistocene.‭
Fossil representation: Many specimens.

       The imperial mammoth is one of the largest known mammoth species in the fossil record,‭ ‬and‭ ‬possibly not only the largest mammoth but the largest terrestrial mammal currently known from North America.‭ ‬The imperial mammoth is still eclipsed in terms of size by some other mammoths‭; ‬however the exact species is not uncertain.‭ ‬Previously the record holder went to Mammuthus sungari,‭ ‬but new analysis of these remains in‭ ‬2010‭ ‬has since led to the idea that the largest remains of M.‭ ‬sungari should be moved over to M.‭ ‬trogontherii,‭ ‬better known as the steppe mammoth,‭ ‬making this the largest species.
       The imperial mammoth is usually associated with finds within the United States of America,‭ ‬but remains are also known from as far as Southern Mexico and Canada.‭ ‬As such the imperial mammoth covered a broad geographical range much like its counterpart the Columbian mammoth‭ (‬M.‭ ‬columbi‭)‬.‭ ‬These two species are often confused with one another due to their similar forms,‭ ‬but the imperial mammoth can be identified from its tusks,‭ ‬the tips of which cross over one another.‭ ‬The imperial mammoth does seem to have suffered the same fate as the Columbian mammoth however by succumbing to the combined effects of climate change and human hunting.


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