When its fossils might be those of another big cat. This is the case with “Panthera atrox”. It used to be called the American lion, and recent genetic studies support this. However, some experts disagree. And if you take out Atrox, lions’ historical range shrinks considerably. – a huge difference for conservationists today.
Does it matter if the ferocious sabertooth that’s about to attack you lacks the right bone structure to convince scientists it’s a cat?
The first modern cats exploded through the Old World like particles shooting out of a radioactive rock.
Homotherium was the more successful of the two ice-age sabertoothed cats, but it’s also more of a mystery.
As scary as Smilodon cats must have been, something terribly beautiful left the world when they finally disappeared.