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Smilodon fatalis, famous for being one of the most well studied “sabre toothed cats” was discovered and named by Leidy in 1868. This is a relatively recent species known only from the Pleistocene (2.6 ma to 10 kya).  They are most well known from the La Brea tar pits, located in Los Angeles, California.  The La Brea tar pits are a series of natural asphalt pits that often trapped animals and preserved them for scientists to study. Current research suggests it was an ambush predator, taking advantage of unsuspecting prey to quickly pounce and incapacitate with a single bite. Their prey were predominantly large consumers that fed primarily on grass, such as deer and horses. 

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