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Russian Geological Research Institute
TsNIGR Museum

Woolly rhinoceros

The woolly rhinoceros was a contemporary of the mammoth. It was a powerful squab animal with short legs, a large scruff, and a relatively long head. Its body was covered with coarse hair and fine thick undercoat. Horns (leathery formations) sat on rough and durable calluses, thickenings of the nasal and frontal bones. The anterior horn, saber-like curved backwards, with a sharp end, reached 80-130 cm in length, the posterior one was always smaller. The rhinoceros had large molars, six on each side. The incisors were absent, and the gripping of grass and branches of shrubs was carried out by the keratinized edges of the lips. In size and strength, this mammal was second only to the mammoth and weighed about 3 tons. The body length reached 3.5 m, the height at the withers was 153 cm. Woolly rhinos, apparently, were individual, not herd animals, kept in pairs and broods. Like mammoths, they were herbivores and lived in cold zones – tundra, forest-tundra.