19 million years ago, in the area of the Petrified Forest used to live one of the oldest mammals in Greece, the Lesvos Deinotherium.

Its bones were found fossilized in September 1999, near Gavathas in Lesvos, inside lake sediments. During the excavations, the lower jaw and the bones that connected it to the animal’s skull were revealed. On each part of the jaw (half-jaw) there are five teeth, characteristic feature of the species.

The paleontologists who studied the fossil concluded that it belongs to the species of Proboscidea, the family that includes present-day Elephants. After cleaning the fossil and comparing it with fossils from other places, it was found that it belongs to an animal of the family Deinotheriidae, and specifically to the Prodeinotherium (Prodeinotherium bavaricum). The Prodeinotherium of Gavathas was compared to Prodeinotheria of other European countries and was found to be older than them. It was finally concluded that this animal lived 18.4 -19 million years ago.

Would you like to conduct your own research, get to know the Lesvos Deinotherium, understand its importance, discover the Proboscidea and the secrets of their evolution?

It is time to get ready for your new research expedition and discover the Lesvos Deinotherium.

Worksheets with a variety of activities, games and drawings will help you with your research.

For further information, questions or queries you can contact us at 2251047033 or you can send us an e-mail: lesvospf@otenet.gr

We would like you to send us your drawings along with your first name, your age and your parents’ approval at the e-mail of the Museum of Natural History of the Petrified Forest of Lesvos (lesvospf@otenet.gr) and the Museum will post them online.

Let’s discover the secrets of the Lesvos Deinotherium…


  1. Connect the dots
  2. Color only the Proboscidea
  3. Deinoulis‛ walk at the tropical Lesvos Petrified Forest