The aurochs or urus (Bos primigenius), the ancestor of domestic cattle, was a type of huge wild cattle which inhabited Europe, Asia and North Africa, but is now extinct; it survived in Europe until 1627. The aurochs was far larger than most modern domestic cattle with a shoulder height of 2 metres (6.6 ft) and weighing 1,000 kilograms (2,200 lb). Domestication occurred in several parts of the world at roughly the same time, about 8,000 years ago.
Diprotodon or Giant Wombat or Rhinoceros Wombat was the largest known marsupial that ever lived. It, along with many other members of a group of unusual species collectively called the Australian megafauna, existed from 1.6 million years ago until about 40,000 years ago (through most of the Pleistocene epoch). Diprotodon spp. fossils have been found in many places across Australia, including complete skulls and skeletons, as well as hair and foot impressions.
Homo habilis ("handy man") is a species of the genus Homo, which lived from approximately 2.3 to 1.4 million years ago at the beginning of the Pleistocene period. The discovery and description of this species is credited to both Mary and Louis Leakey, who found fossils in Tanzania, East Africa, between 1962 and 1964. Homo habilis is the earliest known species of the genus Homo. In its appearance and morphology, H. habilis is thus the least similar to modern humans of all species in the genus.
A mammoth is any species of the extinct genus Mammuthus. These proboscideans are members of Elephantidae, the family of elephants and mammoths, and close relatives of modern elephants. They were often equipped with long curved tusks and, in northern species, a covering of long hair. They lived from the Pliocene epoch from around 4.8 million to 4,500 years ago. The word mammoth comes from the Russian мамонт mamont, probably in turn from the Vogul (Mansi) language, mang ont, meaning "earth horn".
The robust australopithecines, members of the extinct hominin genus Paranthropus (Greek para "beside", Greek anthropos "human"), were bipedal hominids that probably descended from the gracile australopithecine hominids (Australopithecus).
Megatherium ("Great Beast") was a genus of elephant-sized ground sloths endemic to Central America and South America that lived from the Pliocene through Pleistocene existing approximately 5.289 million years. The rhinoceros-sized Promegatherium is suggested to be the ancestor of Megatherium.
Mylodon is an extinct genus of giant ground sloth that lived in the Patagonia area of South America until roughly 10,000 years ago. Mylodon weighed about 200 kilograms (440 lb) and stood up to 3 m (10 ft) tall when raised up on its hind legs. Preserved dung has shown it was a herbivore. It had very thick hide and had osteoderms within its skin for added armor.
Machairodus was a genus of large, machairodontine saber-toothed cats that lived in Europe, Asia, Africa and North America during the Miocene through Pleistocene living from 11.6 mya–126 000 years ago, existing for approximately 11.474 million years.
Dinofelis ("terrible cat") is a genus of saber-toothed cats belonging to the tribe Metailurini. They were widespread in Europe, Asia, Africa and North America at least 5 million to about 1.2 million years ago. Fossils very similar to Dinofelis from Lothagam range back to the Late Miocene, some 8 million years ago.
Smilodon, often called saber-toothed cat or saber-toothed tiger, is an extinct genus of the subfamily machairodontine saber-toothed cats endemic to North America and South America living from the Early Pleistocene through Lujanian stage of the Pleistocene epoch (1.8 mya—10,000 years ago).
Homotherium is an extinct genus of machairodontine saber-toothed cats, often termed scimitar cats, endemic to North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa during the Pliocene and Pleistocene epochs (5 mya–10 000 years ago), existing for approximately 5 million years. It first became extinct in Africa some 1.5 million years ago. In Eurasia it survived until about 30 000 years ago. The last scimitar cat could have survived in North America until 10 000 years ago.
The Cave Bear (Ursus spelaeus) was a species of bear which lived in Europe during the Pleistocene and became extinct at the beginning of the Last Glacial Maximum about 27,500 years ago. Both the name Cave Bear and the scientific name spelaeus derive from the fact that fossils of this species were mostly found in caves, indicating that this species spent more time in caves than the Brown Bear, which only uses caves for hibernation.
Mastadons or mastodonts were large tusked mammal species of the extinct genus Mammut found in Asia, Africa, Europe, North America and Central America. The American mastodon is the most recent and best known species of the group. Confusingly, several genera of proboscids from the gomphothere family have similar-sounding names but are actually more closely related to elephants than to mastodons. The genus gives its name to the family Mammutidae, assigned to the order Proboscidea.
Deinotherium ("terrible beast"), also called the Hoe tusker, was a gigantic prehistoric relative of modern-day elephants that appeared in the Middle Miocene and continued until the Early Pleistocene. During that time it changed very little. In life it probably resembled modern elephants, except that its trunk was shorter, and it had downward curving tusks attached to the lower jaw.
Ground sloths are a diverse group of extinct sloths, in the mammalian superorder Xenarthra. Their most recent survivors lived in the Antilles, where it has been proposed they may have survived until 1550 CE; however, the youngest AMS radiocarbon date reported is 4190 BP, calibrated to c. 4700 BP for Megalocnus of Cuba. They had been extinct on the mainland of North and South America for 10,000 years or more.
Homo ergaster (from the Greek ἔργον, "work") is an extinct species (or subspecies) of hominid that lived in eastern and southern Africa from the end of the Pliocene epoch to the early Pleistocene, about 1.8-1.3 million years ago. There is still disagreement on the subject of the classification, ancestry, and progeny of H.
The Dire Wolf, Canis dirus, is an extinct carnivorous mammal of the genus Canis, and was most common in North America and South America from the Irvingtonian stage to the Rancholabrean stage of the Pleistocene epoch living 1.80 Ma – 10,000 years ago, existing for approximately 1.79 million years.
Homo heidelbergensis ("Heidelberg Man", named after the University of Heidelberg), nicknamed "Goliath," is an extinct species of the genus Homo which may be the direct ancestor of both Homo neanderthalensis in Europe and Homo sapiens. The best evidence found for these hominin date between 600,000 and 400,000 years ago. H. heidelbergensis stone tool technology was very close to that of the Acheulean tools used by Homo erectus.
Meganthropus is a name commonly given to several large jaw and skull fragments from Sangiran, Central Java. The original scientific name was Meganthropus palaeojavanicus, and while it is commonly considered invalid today, the genus name has survived as something of an informal nickname for the fossils. As of 2005, the taxonomy and phylogeny for the specimens are still uncertain, although most paleoanthropologists considering them related to Homo erectus in some way.
Homo sapiens idaltu is an extinct subspecies of Homo sapiens that lived almost 160,000 years ago in Pleistocene Africa. Idaltu is from the Saho-Afar word meaning "elder or first born". The fossilized remains of H. s. idaltu were discovered at Herto Bouri in the Middle Awash site of Ethiopia's Afar Triangle in 1997 by Tim White, but were first unveiled in 2003. Herto Bouri is a region of Ethiopia under volcanic layers.
Homo erectus soloensis, known as Solo Man and formerly classified as Homo sapiens soloensis, is generally now regarded as a subspecies of the extinct hominin, Homo erectus. The only known specimens of this anomalous hominid were retrieved from sites along the Bengawan Solo River, on the Indonesian island of Java. The remains are also commonly referred to as Ngandong, after the village near where they were first recovered.
Tarpan (Equus ferus ferus, also known as Eurasian wild horse) is an extinct subspecies of wild horse. The last individual of this subspecies died in captivity in Russia in 1909. Beginning in the 1930s, several attempts have been made to re-create the tarpan through selective breeding.
Elasmotherium ("Thin Plate Beast") is an extinct genus of giant rhinoceros endemic to Asia during the Pliocene through Pleistocene living from 3.6 mya—126,000 existing for approximately 3.5 million years.
The woolly rhinoceros (Coelodonta antiquitatis) is an extinct species of rhinoceros native to the northern steppes of Eurasia that lived during the Pleistocene epoch and survived the last glacial period. The woolly rhinoceros are members of the Pleistocene megafauna.