US Geological Survey


Date of this Version



Published in the JOURNAL OF PALEONTOLOGY, V. 41, NO. 1, P. 247-251, JANUARY 1967.


A lower jaw of the large Pleistocene cat Panthera atrox (Leidy) was found on an alluvial flat near the mouth of Lost Chicken Creek, about 180 miles northeast of Fairbanks, Alaska. It was probably washed out of carbonaceous silt deposits which, in the adjacent area, have also yielded bones of Equus, Bison, Rangifer, Cervus, and Elephantidae. The Panthera jaw falls within the size range of the series from Rancho La Brea, California, and differs from Rancho La Brea specimens only in a few characteristics. P. atrox appears to have been significantly larger than extinct or modern Asian tigers. Despite continuity of the American and Asian land masses at times during the late Pleistocene, present evidence indicates discontinuity between the populations of great cats on the two continents.