Mammals of the badlands
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Mammals of the Badlands. By Christina Hurley. Badlands: Geologic History. Started forming about 75 million years ago Are composed of 6 different formations Pierre Shale Yellow Mounds Chadron Formation Brule Formation Rockyford Ash Sharps Formation. Pierre Shale.

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Mammals of the badlands

Mammals of the Badlands

By Christina Hurley


Badlands geologic history

Badlands:Geologic History

  • Started forming about 75 million years ago

  • Are composed of 6 different formations

    • Pierre Shale

    • Yellow Mounds

    • Chadron Formation

    • Brule Formation

    • Rockyford Ash

    • Sharps Formation


Pierre shale

Pierre Shale

  • Deposited 69-75 mya by shallow inland sea

  • Black mud hardened to shale

  • Fossil clams, ammonites, and sea reptiles have been found


Yellow mounds

Yellow Mounds

  • Weathered black ocean mud

    • Had been exposed from formation of the Black Hills

  • Example of fossil soil (paleosol)


Chadron formation

Chadron Formation

  • Deposited 34-37 mya

  • River flood plain

    • New floods would make each deposit

  • Known for titanotheres fossils (large, rhinoceros-like mammals)


Brule formation

Brule Formation

  • Deposited 30-34 mya

  • Open savannah

  • Bands of sandstone show rivers

  • Red bands paleosol

  • Oreodonts (sheep-like animals) dominated


Rockyford ash

Rockyford Ash

  • Volcanic Ash

  • Bottom layer of Sharps Formation

  • Serves as a boundary between Sharps and Brule Formations


Sharps formation

Sharps Formation

  • 28-30 million years old

  • Deposited by wind and water

  • Volcanic eruptions from the west provided ash


Paleontology

Hyracodon

Subhyracodon

Metamynodon

Tapiroids Colodon

Protapirus

Mesohippus

Miohippus

Archaeotherium

Protoceras

Hyaenodon

Poebrotherium

Oreodont

Nimravid

Hesperocyon

Paleontology


Hesperocyon

Hesperocyon


Hesperocyon1

Hesperocyon

  • “Mongoose-like mammal”

  • One of the earliest Canidae family members

  • Spent little time in the trees and hunted mostly on the ground

  • Had retractable claws to allow ground walking and climbing trees

“There once was a goose named Mon. He was a mongoose.” – Allison Moon


Mesohippus celer

Mesohippus celer


Mesohippus celer1

Means “middle horse”

Appeared suddenly (geologically speaking)

Preceding horses had 4 toes, Mesohippus only had 3

Cerebral hemispheres notably larger

Brain more distinctly equine

Last 3 premolars are like the 3 molars

Like today’s horses have 6 grinding cheek teeth

Mesohippus celer


Leptauchenia nitida oreodont

Leptauchenia nitida (Oreodont)


Leptauchenia nitida oreodont1

Leptauchenia nitida (Oreodont)

  • Called “ruminants hogs”

  • Have distinctive canine teeth

  • High set eyes and nostrils suggest aquatic life-style

  • Clawed toes indicate terrestrial habitat

  • Debated whether it is related to pigs or sheep

    • It’s a SHIG!


Nimravids

Nimravids


Nimravids1

Nimravids

  • Are not saber-toothed cats, not even true cats

  • Illustrates parallel evolution

  • Differences are:

    • Paths of various nerve and blood vessels in skull are more primitive

    • Lack a two-chambered auditory bulla

    • Teeth are more coned shaped

  • No modern relatives – truly extinct


Mammals of the badlands

B - nimravid; A, C - felids; D - marsupial

Illustration of different evolution theories. Third being the most current.


Conclusion

Conclusion

  • Hesperocyon – brought dogs down from the trees

  • Mesohippus celer – 4 toes down to 3, more equine like brain

  • Oreodont – importance still unknown

  • Nimravids – shows parallel evolution


References

References

  • http://fossilmuseum.net/Fossil_Sites/badlands.html

  • http://fossilmuseum.net/Fossil_Galleries/Mammalia/Oreodont/Oreodont.htm

  • http://talkorigins.org/faqs/horses/horse_evol.html

  • http://laelaps.wordpress.com/2007/06/28/just-what-is-a-nimravid-anyway/

  • http://www.nps.gov/badl/upload/07Newspaper.pdf

  • Warren, Dean M.. Small Animal Care and Management. 2. Thomson Delmar Learning, 2002.


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