On March 17,2017 Slovenian Post Authority issued the second stamp of their multi-year set of "Mammals fossils in Slovenia" shows fossil of Mastodon. The first stamp of the set issued in 2016 and shown fossil of cave bear.
The Mastodon – Ancient Giant of the Forests Two million years ago the landscape of Slovenia was very different from the way we see it today. The soaring Alps in the west and the forested landscape with patches of marsh and endless plains in the east were an ideal environment for large proboscideans and other mammals. One of the last European mastodons – of the Anancus arvernensis species – would periodically graze in forest clearings here. Anancus arvernensis inhabited a large part of Europe, appearing in the late Miocene and surviving until the start of the Pleistocene. Some other species inhabited parts of Asia and Africa. The Anancus was very similar to today's elephants, although with much longer, straight tusks and different-shaped teeth. Fossil remains have been found in Slovenia in the Šalek Valley, near Slovenska Bistrica and in many parts of the Slovenske Gorice, Čentibske Gorice and Goričko hill regions. Teeth are the most frequently discovered remains. The best-known site for such finds was discovered near the village of Škala, not far from Velenje, where parts of a skeleton and tusks were also unearthed. The new postage stamp depicts a mastodon tooth discovered more than 70 years ago in a gravel pit close to Sveti Andraž in the Slovenske Gorice hill region. This large tooth (a molar) is from the lower jaw, as also indicated by its strong root. The age of the tooth is not entirely clear, but it is likely to have belonged to an animal that grazed this hill area, covered with sparse woodland, in the late Pliocene. Changes in the environment in the early Pleistocene, approximately two million years ago, also contributed to the extinction of the last mastodon to roam across the territory of present-day Slovenia. Today the mastodon's tooth is on display at the Natural History Museum of Slovenia. The stamp also incorporates a form of augmented reality: use the HP Reveal app to scan the stamp on a mobile device and launch an X-ray video of the cross section of the mastodon's tooth.
Matija Križnar, senior curator, palaeontologist Natural History Museum of Slovenia
References: Stamp Magzine of Slovenian Post, Bulletin Nr. 120 (page 9 with text on Slovenian, German and Englsh languages)
Latest update 17.08.2018
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