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Machaeroides

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Machaeroides eothen
Machaeroides
Name Machaeroides eothen
Order Creodonta
Family Incertae Sedis
Class Mammalia
Name Translation Dagger Like
Period Eocene epoch of the Cenozoic Era
Location USA
Diet Carnivore
Length 1.5-2 metres (5-6.5 feet) long

Machaeroides ("dagger-like") is a genus of sabre-toothed creodont that lived during the Eocene. Its fossils were found in the U.S. state of Wyoming. It is the earliest known sabre-toothed mammal.

DescriptionEdit

Either species bore a passing, or superficial resemblance to a very small, dog-sized saber-toothed cat. Machaeroides could be distinguished from actual saber-toothed cats by their more-elongated skulls, and their plantigrade stance. Machaeroides species are distinguished from the closely related Apataelurus by the fact that the former genus had smaller saber-teeth. M. eothen weighed an estimated 10–14 kg, thus matching in size a smallish Staffordshire Terrier. M. simpsoni was smaller.(Egi 2001)

Taxonomic PlacementEdit

Although it is undeniably a creodont, its placement within the order is in dispute. Experts seem equally divided over whether Machaeroides and its sister-genus, Apataelurus, belong in Oxyaenidae or Hyaenodontidae.

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