Comprehensive Description

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Comprehensive Description

Giant short-faced bears belong to the Ursidae family, which also includes black bears, grizzly bears and polar bears. Arctodus simus was very large in size with a short body and long slender limbs. Arctodus simus had a short neck, a short broad snout and a low forehead.

Giant short-faced bears lived during the middle and late Pleistocene (about 1.3 million to ~12,500 years ago), and were found in many different habitats in North America from the steppe-tundra to grasslands. Giant short-faced bears could have been carnivores (only ate other animals) or omnivores (ate both animals and plants). Recent studies suggest that Arctodus simus was a scavenger rather than a predator. Giant short-faced bears went extinct approximately 12,500 years ago.

New information on the Giant short-faced bear is being discovered all the time and opening the debate on the behavior and life-style of this giant bear.


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© Sanzenbacher, Beth

Source: EOL Rapid Response Team

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