Activity 5: Do at Home!

Extinction!

 


Have you ever seen a living mammoth?

During the end of the last Ice Age many mammals went extinct.

An animal is extinct if there are no more of them alive in the whole world.

Animals may go extinct because their habitat changes or because they are all eaten by other animals. Erupting volcanoes or meteorites hitting the earth might have caused some ancient extinctions.

Circle all of the extinct animals!

[Picture of extinct and still-living mammals]

How are all the animals you circled alike?

Why do you think they don't still live today?

Follow this link to read the answers.

Discuss: Are there animals or plants going extinct today? What may be the cause(s) for these extinctions?

Fact: Approximately 80 different kinds (species) of mammals went extinct during the end of the Ice Age in North America.

Main Message: At the end of the Ice Age many mammals went extinct, particularly the larger ones. This exercise gets students thinking about extinction and possible causes, including hunting and other pressures from humans.

Connections: Activity 3 , "Dinosaur or Mammal?", uses similar observation skills to classify different animals.

The Paleontological Research Institution
1259 Trumansburg Road
Ithaca, NY 14850 phone: 607-273-6623 fax: 607-273-6620
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