Made by John Sharp
Chompers the Gomphothere, basically a four-tusked prehistoric elephant, was made with paper mache clay over a plywood armature, with a juice bottle to support her tummy. I made her during the height of the pandemic, when I was stuck behind glass at the Botanical Garden where I work. She is about two feet long. I made her to illustrate “Evolutionary Anachronism” (see Wikipedia), because our garden hosts several of the big hard, large-seeded fruits that the ancient megafauna are thought to have eaten.
2 thoughts on “Gompothere”
Hi John – your Gompothere looks great. Will he get to live permanently at the botanical garden? What kind of fruit do you have in your yard? We have honey locust here that were supposed to be spread by mastodons and woolly mammoths. But I don’t think there were any four-tusked beasts here. But maybe – now you have me curious, and I’ll have to go look them up. 🙂
Britannia.com says” Gomphotheres spread to all continents except Antarctica and Australia. For most of their history, they lived only in Africa, Eurasia, and North America, but they reached South America in the early Pleistocene, shortly after a complete land connection was established across the Isthmus of Panama.”
Yes, the honey locust and Osage orange were both eaten and spread by the ancient megafauna. Our botanical garden has calabash tree, stinking toe(!) tree, cacao, EarPods and avocados that were spread this way.
Thank you for your kind comments.