Trivia: Large and Fast Past and Present Animals

The largest current terrestrial predacious mammal is the Kodiak Island brown bear. Perhaps the same size is the polar bear. They swim for food but I do not consider them a marine mammal. African elephants are the largest land mammal. Orcas are predacious marine mammals and they are the largest of all predators. I have seen them throw a 1,000 pound fur sea lion into the air like a soccer ball. I do not think a swimming polar bear has a chance against a pack of orcas intent on killing it.

There were many predators in our past. One that I have noted on this blog before was the giant short faced bear. This was a large and fast tremarctine bear of the Pleistocene. At the time this was the largest terrestrial mammal predator. There were large toothed Oligocene whales, like the Basilosaurus, that may have been the largest predators of their time.

Rhino like large mammals of the Oligocene were mammals like Balucotherium, which may have been larger than a wooly mammoth and Titanotherium, a three tonner whose skull and bones can be found in the central rockies. these were truely huge mammals of the past that easily outsised current mammals.

Just some more trivia, did you know the land mammal cheetah can run 70 mph and that peregrine falcons can stoop (dive) at 200 mph. These two are fauna with blazing speeds when you consider that the worlds fastest humans run about 20 mph. Trivia is just what the doctor orders on Sundays.

Matt

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