Following are artist’s depictions of just a few of the many interesting players of the North American, middle Miocene.
Note 1: On the Internet it is often hard to find the original source of a particular picture, so at the bottom I will give links to the sites where (I think) I got them.
Note 2: For some of these creatures, I use photos from living representatives that are similar. Palla’s Cat is interesting in that it could be distantly related to Pseudaelaurus, though it is much smaller. The same with Aelurodons, which have been described as “nearly identical to a gray wolf”. Note 3: Tarantula Hawks are in the book, and exist today as well. Their name reveals their prey. They are, as can be seen from the image, quite large, and their sting, tied with the Bullet Ant as the most painful in the world, has been described by entomologist Justin O. Schmidt as “Blinding, fierce, shockingly electric. A running hair drier has been dropped into your bubble bath”. But they’re really not that bad. I’ve touched the iridescent abdomen of one on a shrub without any reaction from the wasp.
Note 4. The exact coloration of these animal’s fur is purely hypothesis by that particular artist.
My thanks to these great artists and their wonderful artistry. Enjoy!
Lots more by astounding paleoartists like Mauricio Anton. Mauricio’s website.
And now some video! First a size comparison I found online for some Miocene animals.
Then, a couple of rather notorious characters from the Miocene, courtesy of National Geographic and the Discovery Channel:
Gompho – source unknown.
Aepycamelus from here.
Entelodont from here.
Moropus from here.
Teleoceras from here.
Amphicyon from here.
Prosynthetoceras from here.
Hypohippus from here.
Megalodon from here.
Desmostylus from here.
Osteodontornis from here.
Palla’s Cat from here.
Gray Wolf from here.
Tarantula Hawk from here.
Flamingos from here.