A big sister for cat-like Oxyaena: Australohyaena

Figure 1. Australohyaena, a big sister to the cat-like marsupial, Oxyaena, in the LRT.

Figure 1. Australohyaena, a big sister to the cat-like marsupial, Oxyaena, in the LRT. That’s on oddly low jaw glenoid. Distinct from other marsupials, the jugal might NOT have extended to the jaw joint. Originally the frontals were considered nasals.

Australohyaena antiqua (Forasiepi et al. 2014; Late Oligocene; UNPSJB PV 113; Fig. 1) was originally nested with Borhyaena, but here nests with a previously untested taxon, Oxyaena (Fig. 1). Australohyaena is larger and more robust, but the orbit is no larger. The horizontal bar jaw joint makes the jaw a simple hinge with not transverse action possible. The jaw joint falls below the tooth row. The frontals were originally considered nasals.

If you think
marsupial Australohyaena looks like a placental lion (genus: Panthera leo), I agree with you (Fig. 2).

Figure 1. Panthera leo skull and skeleton. This taxon nests basal to hyenas + wolves.

Figure 2. Panthera leo skull and skeleton. This taxon nests basal to hyenas + wolves.

References
Forasiepi AM, Babot MJ and Zimicz N 2014. Australohyaena antiqua (Mammalia,
Metatheria, Sparassodonta), a large predator from the Late Oligocene of Patagonia, Journal of Systematic Palaeontology, DOI: 10.1080/14772019.2014.926403

wiki/Australohyaena: no entry yet.

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