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Published by jack elliot



The Eohippus



Over immense periods of time, animals have adapted themselves to the way they live and to the places where they live.


They have grown the kind of feet, claws, jaws, coats, eyes and even stomachs which suit them best.


This process is called evolution.


A good example of evolution is the development of the toe-nails of the extinct eohippus into the hooves of the horse.





The eohippus lived between fifty and seventy million years ago.


It was about the size of a small dog, it ate grass and it ran across the plains..


The fact that it ran is important.


It had four toes on the front feet and three on the back, and being a runner it grew hard toe-nails.






The eohippos became extinct, but its descendants continued to develop the toes for running, and had three toes on each foot, with the middle one, on which they ran, longer than the others.



Over countless generations the outer toes stopped growing and eventually disappeared, because they were not used, but the strong middle toes become hooves.

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