Habitat & Geography

The Paraceratherium was first discovered in Mongolia in June of 1928 (to learn more about the discovery click here).  It is thought that the origin of the Paraceratherium was in central Asia, along with many other mammals.  However, the Paraceratherium was known to occupy a very large area, called it’s home range.  The home range of an animal is associated with the size, and since the Paraceratherium is the largest mammal ever, it is hypothesized to have roamed about 1000 square miles throughout Turkey, Mongolia and China.  This suggests that there must not have been large populations of Paraceratherium in Asia because it could only supply enough food, water, and shelter for a few populations.  The problem with this hypothesis is that it is hard to imagine them roaming such large distances.  In comparison, many large modern mammals often divide up their niches and develop other specialized traits to help them survive a specific environment.  This has not been seen in the Paraceratherium species.  They had relatively equal body sizes and structures implying they all lived within the same niche.Distribution of Paraceratherium





The red circles indicate where populations of Paraceratherium were thought to have lived.