Close-up of a Paraceratherium walking in the desert


Weighing some 20 tonnes and standing 5.5 metres at the shoulder, Paraceratherium currently holds the record as the largest land mammal ever identified. It was a relative of the rhinoceros, belonging to a family of hornless rhinos, but had a giraffe-like lifestyle, feeding on the leaves of trees. Paraceratherium also goes by the names of Indricotherium and Baluchitherium, as the fossil discoveries have been given many different names. There were several different species of Paraceratherium.

Scientific name: Paraceratherium

Rank: Genus

Common names:

  • Baluchitherium,
  • Indricotherium,
  • near horn animal

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Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web

When they lived

Discover the other animals and plants that lived during the following geological time periods.

Oligocene epoch Oligocene epoch
Over 30 million years ago, the Oligocene epoch saw the start of the global cooling that would eventually shift the Earth's climate to one where glaciers were present and ice ages were possible. Worldwide, this was the time when grasslands began to expand and forests - especially tropical ones - shrank correspondingly.


  1. Life
  2. Animals
  3. Vertebrates
  4. Mammals
  5. Odd-toed ungulates
  6. Hyracodontidae
  7. Paraceratherium