Tag Archives: Mammoth

Woolly Mammoth baby(Prehistoric Mammals, by Schleich)

Schleich woolly Mammoth baby 1

I have already reviewed the queen of the tundra, the Schleich woolly mammoth adult.  Now it is time to look at the complementary baby calf.  Its nice to see that many toy makers depict, not just the full grown menacing adults with large curving tusks, but make cute playful babies as well.  It makes sense to have mammoth toys of all ages, since in real life they herded together in family groups.  You can imagine a herd of woolly mammoths marching through the tundra eating grasses, and low shrubs. In the front, leading the way is the matriarch, while the rest follow single file behind her.  The calves are holding to the tails of their mothers with their trunks.  When the herd stops for a drink, or to munch on vegetation, they surround the younglings as much as possible to keep them protected.   Through the young mammoth eyes, they see many interesting animals that are no longer around today. Gazing in wonder past the woolly legs of the adults, they may see a woolly rhinoceroses or long-horned bison.  Of course sometimes it the predators that are seen, saber toothed cats, cave hyenas, or maybe even a short faced bear.

Schleich woolly Mammoth baby 2

About the toy:  The Schleich toy of the woolly mammoth (Mammuth primigenius) baby could be considered a standalone sculpt, but it is styled to go along with the adult version.  Along with the adult it is now retired.  At 2 ½ in high and 3 ¾ in long it scales really nicely to the adult.   The paint job is your standard black and dark brown.  Its fur color is darker than the larger adult.  The tusks are white, and inside the mouth is a dot of white where the tongue would be.

The first thing that jumps out at me about this figure is the rather static pose of the animal.  The legs are staggered with some bending at the knees, but it appears to just be standing in one place.  There is no turning of the neck as the head is held straight ahead.  They did add a slight quizzical head tilt to one side which gives it some but not much personality.  The trunk is almost the same as the adult, as it looks like the letter J.  The mouth is held open with two little tusks sprouting on either side.  The small ears are down turned with small tufts of fur falling on them from the top of its dome.

Schleich woolly Mammoth baby 3

The rest of the body is rather plain.  There is some muscle bulges or fur bulges on the legs, your choice on what you want to call it.  The flanks bulge outwards where the ribs would be.  The tail is short as it should be.   The entire figure is covered in long but not to shaggy fur.  There is some longer fur on top of its back and on the dome of its head.  The feet are just like the adults with five toes on the front feet and five on the back.

Playability:  As a toy it is ok, and there is nothing wrong with that.   It is a really safe toy that has no sharp edges.  I have observed both my children playing with this mammoth and they usually have it follow mommy mammoth around, asking for food, making friends, or being saved from predator animals.  It has it place in kids  imaginary adventures.  Unfortunately, when compared to the Safari, CollectA, or Papo it just doesn’t have the playfulness or charm of the other brands.

Schleich woolly Mammoth baby 4

Overall:  I like it for what it is, a companion to the adult.  It is an acceptable but underwhelming figure.  As a standalone figure, there are better woolly mammoth calves that are better.  In my opinion, that is due to the pose and relative lack of energy the figure expresses.  There just is no youthful vigor in the sculpt.  There just not enough personality and that is what I would want to see from a young animal toy.  If you like this toy, you can get it alone or in a box set with an adult.

Woolly Mammoth (British Museum of Natural History by Invicta)

Mammuthus primigenius, the one Cenozoic animal that’s been done to death. Every company has tackled this classic Ice Age proboscid. It’s not a particularly strange animal; in size and general appearance it matches closely with extant elephant species and it’s not nearly as bizarre as other genera such as Platybelodon. And yet, we’re fascinated by it. Perhaps this fascination is instinctual? We lived and hunted and relied on these behemoths for so long during a crucial part of our cultural evolution. They’re so close to us, and yet so far. The last population of these beasts only died out 4,000 years ago, on Wrangle Island. It’s an animal we evolved alongside, and yet will never see again. We still find them frozen in the arctic, and their bones strewn about in creek beds, farmers’ fields and in our back yards. We have a connection to these animals unlike any connection we could ever have with other prehistoric fauna. And I suppose that is why Mammuthus is the one exception to the rule that companies generally ignore prehistoric mammals. So naturally, out of the two extinct mammals produced by Invicta the woolly mammoth was bound to be one of them.

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When you take a step back, and look at the entire Invicta collection, their mammoth is perhaps the most underwhelming and mediocre. Honestly when I picked it off my shelf to review it I didn’t think I would give it too much praise. It’s a pretty basic mammoth, and small. At only 4” (tusks included) it’s not even in scale with the rest of the Invicta line. If anything, we want our mammoth figures to be BIG! But upon closer inspection I can find a lot to like about this little guy. No, it’s not as detailed, accurate or awe inspiring as those by Carnegie, Safari, Papo and even Schleich but it has character, and that counts for something. The detail work like with all the Invicta figures is superb. A thick, shaggy coat is present with clumps of sculpted hairs following different contours of the animal’s body. The little top knot of hair is there on the head, tiny eyes and ears are nestled within the beast’s coat. Wrinkles are sculpted down the length of the truck which ends with the finger-like tips of the snout and even a mouth is discernible underneath the trunk.

DSCN9273The mammoth is sculpted with a leaning forward stride, the right forelimb stepping off the ground. It looks as if this mammoth is perhaps moving through some heavy snow as it pushes forward with a stretched out hind-limb, its massive shoulders lifting up its forelimbs as it continues on its lonesome march. And I say lonesome because this model looks to me like a solitary bull mammoth. Despite being a small model it does convey a certain amount of heft. Yes, this is an old bull marching through the tundra, weighed down by his shaggy coat and to a greater degree, his age. He looks old, with small tired eyes straining to see through the blanket of falling snow. Certainly a model that can convey this sort of back story cannot be mediocre? No, I should think not.

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Produced in 1975 this is one of the older models in the Invicta line but it has a few unique features. The monochrome version does something that none of the other models do. It has two colors. The entire body is dark red in color, including the eyes and toe nails. It is a monochrome figure. The tusks on the other hand are white, and inserted into the model. They’re not a part of it like the Triceratops horns or Stegosaurus spikes are a part of those models. However they’re secured in there though they are indeed secure, they don’t appear as if they’ll fall out anytime soon. The painted version of the model is grey in color, with white lines painted down the strands of hair. As always, I prefer the monochrome version. It’s also worth noting that the text on the underside reads “woolly mammoth”. This is not like the other models were their genus name is printed on the bottom but I do believe this is the only model Invicta produced that even has a common name, except for the blue whale of course. In terms of accuracy the model seems to stand up pretty well but we’ve always had a pretty good understanding of what these animals looked like so that should come as no surprise. This might even be the most accurate toy in the Invicta range!

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One could argue that this mammoth is not really an essential part of a collection, unless you’re an Invicta or mammoth completest. There are tons of other mammoths to choose from. Many of them are larger, more detailed and more dynamic. Amongst a mammoth collection, it does not stand out. Amongst the Invicta collection, it does not stand out. But by itself, when held in hand and examined closely, you’ll find that this is a charming little mammoth with big personality. I didn’t think I would have much to say about this mammoth until I myself gave it a good look over, and found that I like it a lot more than I originally anticipated. Hopefully this review will compel you to take a second look at your own mammoth, or even go out looking for this guy. As usual, it’s off to Ebay to secure one but it’s not a hard model to find, and typically fairly priced. Happy hunting!

Available from Ebay.com here

Woolly Mammoth (Hansa)

Review and photographs by Quentin Brendel (aka ‘Pachyrhinosaurus’), edited by Plesiosauria.

As the most commonly-depicted prehistoric mammal out there, Mammuthus primigenius, the woolly mammoth, can be found in many different forms in the toy world. Unlike most reviews on the blog, the incarnation to be reviewed here is a soft toy. Although this review isn’t the first ever soft toy reviewed on the Dinotoyblog, it is the first ever ‘Hansa Toy International’ toy to be reviewed. I am not an avid collector of plushies, however the craftsmanship on Hansa products is outstanding, and well worth the price tag. Other brands have made mammoths as soft toys, however, none of the ones I’ve seen have the quality of this one.

Woolly Mammotg Hansa

For proportions, the head is very large compared to a real mammoth and the legs are short. These are to be expected, though, as most plush animals have features like these. The feet are missing nails.

Woolly Mammotg Hansa

This mammoth is made of four kinds of fabric. The main body has long hair and is of a reddish-brown color with darker tips. The face and feet have lighter brown fur, which is much shorter than the hair on the main body. It also has darker airbrushed marks on the face and trunk for shading, in seams or grooves as well as down the trunk as in wrinkles on a modern elephant’s trunk. The third fabric is slightly shorter. It is darker than the face and more of a brown color. This fabric covers the foot pads and trunk tip. The fourth and final kind of fabric is very short and is present on the animal’s tusks and mouth interior. The tusks are white, with ivory airbrushing to add a sense of depth by shading. The mouth is pale brown with some dark shading in it as well. Airbrushing is found on almost all of Hansa’s pieces and really does make the toy look more realistic with the addition of shading or markings if the animal has any.

Woolly Mammotg Hansa

Including the tail, the Hansa mammoth is around 45 centimeters long and just under 30 centimeters high. It is also about 15 centimeters wide. The eyes are plastic, and are brown with large, black, pupils. As with most other soft toys by Hansa, the legs are bendable with wire to support their position and the weight of the toy. The trunk, however, is not. Even though it is posable, it is suggested that the limbs be posed once and kept that way, as it is very difficult to bend them back into their original positions.

Woolly Mammotg Hansa

Hansa also offers a number of other mammoths and even a sabre-tooth cat as well as other prehistoric animals, including dinosaurs. The dinosaurs, while also well made, are not as accurate as their prehistoric mammals or modern animals, sometimes disturbingly so. This mammoth is still in production and can be easily found on Amazon (Amazon.co.uk here, Amazon.com here) or eBay here. If you want a plush mammoth, I would recommend this over any other.