DNA study shows dire wolves are not wolves.

Dire wolves (Canis dirus) were widespread apex carnivores that lived in North America during the last several ice ages (~ 13,000 -125,000 years ago) and hunted megafauna from the same time period. They were 20 percent larger than modern gray wolves and have gained popularity through the TV show - Game of Thrones. Many specimens have been preserved in the fossil record including almost 3,500 recovered from the Rancho La Brea tar pits. When comparing their bones to wolves they look nearly identical. However, after sequencing several ancient samples of DNA, it turns out that dire wolves are not wolves at all but a distinctive group that diverged from wolves and coyotes 5.7 million years ago. Because of this new finding paleontologists are considering changing their scientific name to Aenocyon dirus (Aenocyon meaning terrible wolf), but the common name, dire wolf, will probably be a misnomer that hangs around for years to come. 
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