The Giant Short-Faced Bear (Arctodus simus) was not as Bizarre as Originally Thought

Interesting updates about everyone’s favorite Pleistocene bear. Not quite what we first thought but still a formidable predator.

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Scientists first described the giant short-faced bear as an unusually long-limbed bruin with a shortened catlike face.  Some proposed this species outran prey, much like a cheetah does.  However, later studies determined it was not a particularly fast runner but was instead built for endurance.  Nevertheless, these descriptions suggested a very bizarre kind of bear.  But now, the most recent and thorough study of the short-faced bear’s anatomy upends much of what was previously thought about this bear. Paleontologists, led by Borja Figuerida, compared skeletons of the giant short-faced bear with those of 56 different species of carnivores including all living species of bear.  In all they looked at 411 specimens.  They believe the giant short-faced bear did not sport much of a different appearance than any living species of bear, though it was very large. The legs were not unusually long.  They claim the assumption of a bear with…

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About George Crawford

archaeologist, archer, primitive technologist, and wannabee musician ... mostly
This entry was posted in Archaeology, paleontology and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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