|“||A 12-ton giant. She is an Indricotherium.||„|
|— Allen, describing Indricotherium|
Paraceratherium (name meaning "Near the Hornless Beast"), also known as Indricotherium, Baluchitherium, or simply called the Giant-Giraffe Rhinoceros, is a genus of large hornless rhinoceros that originated during the Early Oligocene epoch in what is now Asia. Standing more than 7 meters tall and weighing around 15 tons, Paraceratherium was the largest terrestrial mammal of all time; taller, larger, and heavier than an African elephant. Essentially, it was a giant rhino looking for all the world like a rhino trying to be a giraffe, hence its nickname the "Giant-Giraffe Rhinoceros".
In the episode "The Big, the Small, the Bad, & the Ugly", a few Paraceratherium were brought back to the park from Late Oligocene Mongolia 25 million years ago.
Era & DiscoveryEdit
Paraceratherium lived during the Late Eocene to the Late Oligocene period from 34–20 million years ago. It shared its environment with animals like Cynodictis, Chalicotherium, Entelodon, and Hyaenodon. Paraceratherium was the largest land mammal of its time. It was first discovered by Guy Ellcock Pilgrim in 1907.
Paraceratherium was not only the largest rhinoceros that ever existed nor just the largest terrestrial mammal in its environment, but it was also the largest mammalian land animal that ever lived on the Planet Earth. Despite their giraffe-like appearance, Paraceratherium were ancestors of rhinos, but it was their size that differentiated them from their future descendants. A fully grown adult male stood over 23 feet (7 m) tall, taller than an adult giraffe, and weighed as much as 15 tons (33,000 lbs.), which is equivalent to 8 modern rhinos, therefore making them heavier than an adult elephant. Paraceratherium females were smaller, weighing in at 12 tons (26,000 lbs.). Paraceratherium could have also easily lived into their eighties, and this longevity gave them a unique knowledge of their environment.
Behavior & TraitsEdit
Paraceratherium was a solitary animal, only getting together with others during mating season, but also occasionally encountering others and traveling with other Paraceratherium in dire need of food and water during a drought. When it came to mating, adult male Paraceratheriums often got into fights that included banging each other on their body sides with their heads, and their skulls were specially built to withstand these contests. Additionally, older female Paraceratheres that encountered another searching for water would even lead them where a body of water would be.When female Paraceratherium who had just given birth were faced with danger and predators tried to get their babies, the mothers desperately tried to keep their offspring between their legs so they could defend them with powerful kicks. When newborns calves arrived, they would already have weighed a quarter of a ton and therefore. Therefore, their legs wouldn't have yet gotten used to bearing any weight at all, so the newborns spent the rest of their new time learning how to walk.
During the days of birth, newborn Paraceratherium calves also had food on their minds. It was the beginning of the most vulnerable period in their lives. From the moment they were born, Paraceratherium calves were completely dependent on their mothers for at least the next three years of their lives. They needed their mother's protection, and for their first year in life, they also relied on their mother's milk. This was an astonishingly long commitment for any mother Paraceratherium, but if their calves just survived for that long, their size meant that there would not be a single predator on the planet that could touch them.
Paraceratherium calves were off their mother's milk when they were about a year of age. And during mating season, when a fight between two males was over, calves were at serious risk–the biggest threat to a Paraceratherium is an adult male. During mating, calves could get trampled to death.
As Paraceratherium calves reached three years old, they weighed over a ton. When female Paraceratherium was about to have a new calf, and at some point in their previous calf's life when they reached three years old, their mothers behaved awkwardly towards their calves, however, the females were only doing what they had to do: they literately chased their previous calves away. Adult female Paraceratherium had as many as three calves in their lives. And in order to give their next, unborn calf or calves the best chance in life, they must break the three–year–old bond they had with their previous calves. For those calves, it was time for them to make their own way in the world. Because the mothers had another calf, to both that new-born calf and to her, their previous calves, whether male or female, were nothing but threats. And because of that, even if the previous calf was injured and their mothers were the only safety they knew, those previous calves wouldn't ever again have their mother's protection. They spent the rest of their days alone. This was the hardest lesson of all, but if Paraceratherium calves lived to four years old, they were finally large enough to take care of themselves.
- Paraceratherium was the largest terrestrial mammal brought to the park.
- Despite its large size and inability to be touched, let alone, attacked by predators, there are few carnivorous animals that are capable of injuring and even killing Paraceratherium; one of them being Tyrannosaurus.
- Although it is called as Paraceratherium, the people of Prehistoric Earth call it Indricotherium.
- The sound effects of Paraceratherium are that of camel, rhino, giraffe, and cow.