You might think of camels as sweaty beasts, roaming the desert for days on end. But did you know they used to chill in the Arctic – 45 million years ago?
The large humps on their back aren’t just for the comfort of the rider. Their fat storage helps camels survive in freezing temperatures. Millions of years ago, camels lived in the snow and ice of the Northern Arctic. While also surviving 24-hour darkness during some months of the year.
Archeologists say these ancient camels were 30% larger than today’s. Apart from that, theres not much difference between the two. Their wide, flat feet can be used for walking on sand or snow. And they both have large eyes, useful for seeing at night.
About 5 million years ago, these Arctic camels crossed into Eurasia and migrated south. Others wandered down to South America and evolved into alpacas and llamas. So, although we may think of these fuzzy friends as being Middle Eastern or Egyptian. They’re ancient Canadians!