1996 32¢ Woolly Mammoth
Issue Date: June 8, 1996
City: Toronto, Canada
Printed By: Ashton-Potter (USA) Ltd
Printing Method: Lithographed
Perforations: 11.1 x 11
Mammoths are members of an extinct genus of elephants. Woolly mammoths were a specialized type of mammoth with long, reddish brown hair, which protected them from the severe cold of the Ice Age (2,000,000-10,000 years ago). Mammoths were more closely related to elephants than were mastodons.
Measuring 14 feet high at the shoulder, the woolly mammoth was a huge, lumbering animal. Its tusks, which curved up and crossed in front of its trunk, could measure up to 13 feet in length. Three inches of fat under the skin provided further insulation, and there was a large hump of fat on its back. The mammoth’s skull was high and dome-like, and its ears were smaller than an elephant’s.
Mammoths first appeared in Africa 4 million years ago, and they reached North America about 1.5 million years ago. Their fossils are among the most common in the world. Remarkably preserved 30,000-year-old mammoths have been found in Siberia. Prehistoric man pictured mammoths in his cave art. In Europe, realistic depictions of entire herds of mammoths have been found. Evidence exists that prehistoric human settlers of North America hunted these huge animals. Mammoths became extinct at the end of the Ice Age.