05 February 2013

Giant Pleistocene beaver first found in an Ohio bog may be depicted on a sculpture from 23JP1222, Missouri site OR66Z

A possible depiction of Castoroides ohioensis in left profile view from the Old Route 66 Zoo portable rock art site in Missouri

Castoroides ohioensis had a length of up to 2.5 m (8.2 ft) and an estimated weight of 60-100 kg (130-220 lbs); past estimates went up to 220 kg (485 lbs). It lived in North America during the Pleistocene epoch and went extinct at the end of the last Ice Age, 12,000 years ago.

Ken Johnston interpreted this stone as a rodent depiction upon inspection in February 2012. It reminded me of a ground hog or a prairie dog. When searching for the best match for what this creature may be, the Giant Beaver reconstructions were a good match. Its remains were first found in an Ohio peat bog in the early 19th century.

Photo: Ryan Somma
Permission: Creative Commons Licensed photo by ideonexus.com.
Source: Taken at the Minnesota Science Museum: Mississippi River Gallery, From Don's Maps

Peter Faris of Rock Art Blog has written about this subject.

-kbj

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