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Loxodonta atlantica is an extinct species of elephant in the genus Loxodonta, from Africa. It was larger than the modern African elephant, with more progressive dentition.[1] It includes Pleistocene fossils from Ternifine,[2] Middle Pleistocene fossils from Elandsfontein and Late Pliocene fossils from the Omo River, with a final dating in the Late Pleistocene.[3][4] L. atlantica was said to probably derive from L. adaurora;[5] however, an analysis in 2009 suggested that L. antlantica evolved from L. exoptata, and is ancestral to L. africana.[6] The species is divided into two subspecies: L. atlantica atlantica (northern Africa) and L. atlantica zulu (southern Africa).[5] The type for Loxodonta atlantica is housed in the Muséum national d'histoire naturelle in Paris, but is listed without a specimen number.[6]

Loxodonta atlantica
Temporal range: Pliocene to Late Pleistocene
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Proboscidea
Family: Elephantidae
Genus: Loxodonta
L. atlantica
Binomial name
Loxodonta atlantica
Pomel, 1879


  1. ^ R. Norman Owen-Smith. Megaherbivores: the influence of very large body size on ecology
  2. ^ D. Geraads (1987). Dating the Northern African cercopithecid fossil record:, retrieved 6 December 2011.
  3. ^ Jane Carruthers et al. The Elephant in South Africa: History and Distribution:, retrieved 6 December 2011.
  4. ^ Kingdon, Jonathan; Happold, David; Butynski, Thomas; Hoffmann, Michael; Happold, Meredith; Kalina, Jan (2013-05-23). Mammals of Africa. A&C Black. ISBN 9781408189962.
  5. ^ a b Coppens Y., V.J. Maglio, C.T. Madden & M. Beden. 1978. Proboscidea. In: V.J. Maglio & H.B.S. Cooke (eds) Evolution of African mammals. Harvard University Press, Cambridge MA, 336–367.
  6. ^ a b The Anatomical Record: Advances in Integrative Anatomy and Evolutionary Biology Volume 293, Issue 1, Article first published online: 20 NOV 2009:, retrieved 2 December 2011.