Megatherium (Prehistoric Mammals by Schleich)

Review and photographs by Indohyus, edited by Suspsy

In many ways, the giant ground sloths are similar to prosauropods in that they are a familiar group, but only one member gets love in toy form. The other group of giant xenarthrans, the glyptodonts, tend get at least get two representatives, but only Megatherium gets a toy form among giant ground sloths. It’s not surprising given that it is the largest member of the group, one of the largest land mammals of all time, and one of the most popular post-dinosaur extinct animals.

image

Although Schleich doesn’t have the best record for accurate or good quality dinosaurs, it has seen great success with most of its prehistoric mammals. Thus there are great expectations for this figure. Onto the details: the figure is 3.2” high and 6.6” in length, making it a bit on the smaller size, but not a bad size. The posture is a nice departure from the traditional pose given to Megatherium. This one is all fours, knuckle walking while foraging, sticking its tongue out to gather grasses (or possibly blowing a raspberry at someone, if you so wish).

image

The colouring is dull, but realistic for a large mammal and in keeping with preserved fur found on another prehistoric ground sloth, Mylodon. The coat is dark brown with pink on the tongue and black eyes. It is a very shaggy animal, with a long-haired pelt covering the entire figure, giving it a fairly realistic look.

image

The animal seems fairly accurate to the fossil finds. The tail isn’t too long, the claws are well-proportioned, and the limbs also have the correct proportions, with front limbs thinner than the hind ones. The feet are fairly flat, unlike many depictions where the feet curl up, although it can be hard to say if this is too inaccurate. It also seems a bit slim; it could do with bulking up a bit. I’m also not keen on the head. It is correct to the skull, but seems too horse-like to me. It does look similar to the picture used in the Encyclopaedia Britannica, so some may prefer this head design, but I would have preferred a more traditional, sloth-like appearance.

image

A bit of a mixed bag, but overall, I do like this figure. Certainly more unique among Megatherium figures, it is well worth having in a collection or for kids to play with, as the pose is fairly active and the look is quite charming. As a result of it being a retired figure, it’s best to hunt eBay for this figure, but it is worth picking up.

image

4 Responses to Megatherium (Prehistoric Mammals by Schleich)

  1. Pingback: Smilodon (Prehistoric Mammals by Schleich) | Dinosaur Toy Blog

  2. I like it being different in size – I use it as a Shasta ground sloth which is native to my geographic area.

  3. A good companion piece to accompany the Safari Megatherium – both seem around the 1/40 scale mark.

  4. Huh, you’re right right, there do seem to be some parellels between sloths and prosauropods now that you mention it. They are always portrayed in a similar manner, for one thing, with similar poses.

Leave a comment