Museum Frankfurt


Ausstellung Elefanten Panorama
Elephants are the largest living land mammals. In the second courtyard, they are compared with the large marine mammals. Here you see recent and fossil representatives of the Proboscidea. A 24-meter-long wall chart illustrates to scale individual Proboscidea groups. The genealogy, with examples of the structure of the teeth, makes the development clear.

African elephant – the largest land animals
African bull elephants are the largest living beings on land. They reach a height of up to four meters
and can weigh up to 7 tons. African elephants have large ears with which they release pent-up body heat. Their trunks have two pointed ends. With these, the animals can reach precisely for leaves and twigs.
  Afrikanischer Elefant

Indische Elefantenkuh

  Indian elephant – the old lady of Frankfurt
The bones are from the elephant lady "Mädi". She was born in 1947 in India and died in 1981 at the Frankfurt Zoo. The tusks of the female are hardly recognizable because they are tiny. Only males can form long tusks. Indian elephants are a little smaller than their African relatives.

Mühldorfer prehistoric elephant – with four tusks
The Mühldorfer prehistoric elephant (Gomphotherium), whose original skeleton is in the Bavarian State Collection in Munich, was discovered in 1971 in the sands on the banks of the Inn River, south of Mühldorf. It is about ten million years old. In its size and completeness, it is a unique European specimen of a primordial and cuspidate-toothed proboscidean.
  Mühldorfer Urelefant

 amerikanisches Mammut   Amerikanisches Mammut – entfernt verwandt
Auch unter dem Namen „Mastodon“  ist das ausgestellte amerikanische Mammut bekannt.  Weniger als 10.000 Jahre ist dieses wertvolle originale Skelett alt. Eurasische und  amerikanische  Mammuts entstammen zwei verschiedenen Gruppen von Rüsseltieren. Amerikanische Mammuts besitzen ein Quetschgebiss, aber eurasische Mammuts wie auch die heutigen Elefanten ein Mahlgebiss.

American mammoth – a distant relative
The exhibited American mammoth is also known under the name of "mastodon". This valuable original skeleton is less than 10,000 years old. Eurasian and American mammoths descend from two different groups of Proboscideans. American mammoths have a hypsodont/non-molar dentition, but Eurasian mammoths have, like modern elephants, a molar dentition.

  europäische Mammuts

Zwergelefanten   Dwarf elephant – one-eyed?
During the Ice Ages, the dwarfing of large mammals occurred several times on the Mediterranean islands. The mature pair and the skull of a young animal come from approximately 70,000-year-old deposits in a cave at Spinagallo (Sicily). During the times of the ancient Greeks, cranial specimens were described as the heads of the one-eyed Cyclops. This was due to misinterpretation of the large nasal opening in the middle of the skull.

Elephant tusks – from the Rhine-Main region
The tusk or Rhine elephant (Deinotherium) had basically formed yoke-shaped molars. For this animal, the modified downward curved tusks made the lower jaw more powerful, while the maxillary tusks were missing. The original of the skull cast exhibited was found in the Miocene sands of Eppelsheim, and is about 11 million years old.
  Deinotherium Schädel