Temporal range: Miocene
Tumblr 59518f7dadc6b6b8d31899311e5fe019 d610266d 1280
An artist's illustration of Platybelodon danovi
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Proboscidea
Family: Gomphotheriidae
Tribe: Amebelodontini
Genus: Platybelodon
Borissiak, 1928
Referred species
  • Platybelodon barnumbrowni
    (Barbour, 1931)
  • Platybelodon danovi
    (Borissiak, 1928) (type)
  • Platybelodon grangeri
    (Osborn, 1929)
  • Platybelodon loomisi
    (Barbour, 1929)

Platybelodon is a species of Proboscidea from the Miocene Epoch. It was closely related to the Gomphotheres, and this can be seen by the shape of the tusks. Platybelodon ("flat-spear tusk") was a genus of large herbivorous mammal related to the Elephants(order Proboscidea). It lived during the Miocene Epoch, about 15-4 million years ago, and ranged over Africa, Europe, Asia, and North America. Although it thrived during its time, it did not survive past the Miocene. Platybelodon was very similar to Amebelodon, another, closely related gomphothere genus. Due to the shape of the two lower teeth, which are worn by many gomphothere genera (such as Platybelodon, Archaeobelodon, and Amebelodon), they are popularly known as "shovel tuskers". Platybelodon was previously believed to have fed in the swampy areas of grassy savannas, using its teeth to shovel up aquatic and semi-aquatic vegetation. However, wear patterns on the teeth suggest that it used its lower tusks to strip bark from trees, and may have used the sharp incisors that formed the edge of the "shovel" more like a modern-day scythe, grasping branches with its trunk and rubbing them against the lower teeth to cut it from a tree.



In The Media[]

  • Platybelodon was seen in a 1981 Stop Motion documentary called Mark D. Wolf's Age of Mammals.
  • It was also seen in Discovery Channels Land of the Mammoth.
  • It was seen in One of the Ice Age Films.
  • Platybelodon appears in The Amazing World of Gumball episode “The Rerun” and "The Insquestion".