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Extinct Large-headed Llama (Hemiauchenia macrocephalus) Fact Sheet: Reproduction & Development

Extinct Large-headed Llama (Hemiauchenia macrocephalus)

How Do We Know This?

Clues to stages of development in a growing animal come from tooth replacement patterns and timing of suture closure in skull and limb bones.

Life Stages

  • Juvenile Hemiauchenia are recognized by the same criteria that identify modern young camels (baby teeth, unfused ends of long bones and unfused vertebrae)
  • Old age individuals are identified by large size, worn teeth, and age-related arthritic bones.

Mortality and Health

  • Medium to large-sized sized cats, and wolves might have preyed on these small camels.
  • One isotope study of Smilodon gracilis teeth in Florida found this predator had a diet of herbivores such as Hemiauchenia that fed mainly on, wet-climate C3 plants. (Feranec 2002)

Page Citations

Feranec (2002)

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