Sivatherium has always been changing. A recent study of the animal has revealed that it is the largest of a family called ruminants. Ruminants include cattle, goats and deer. These animals chew cud and have a four-chambered stomach. This system helps them to break down and digest plant matter more efficiently, and at present the ruminants dominate the faunas of the world.
New digital reconstructions by Liverpool John Moores University show us that this creature weighed about 857 to 1,812 kilograms, a large creature by any standards, around the maximum weight of today’s largest ruminant, the giraffe. This is probably the last chapter in the Sivatherium story for a long time. Indeed, the animal’s exact appearance has been contested for centuries.
Sivatherium, named for the Hindu god of creation and destruction, is an animal dating back to the earliest days of paleontology. Since the 19th Century, scientists have been attempting to reconstruct it as realistically as possible. However for a long time, there was not much to go with, and the study of fossils was still in its infancy.