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Sinobaatar lingyuanensis

Chinese Science Bulletin

Vol.47 No.11 pp.933-938


Sinobaatar gen. nov.: First multituberculate from the Jehol Biota of
Liaoning, Northeast China

HU Yaoming1,2,3 & WANG Yuanqing1

1. Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology, Chinese
Academy of Sciences, Beijing 10044, China;
2. American Museum of Natural History, New York, NY 10024, USA;
3. Biology Program (Ecology, Evolutionary Biology, and Behavior), Graduate
School and City College, City University of New York, NY 10016, USA
Correspondence should be addressed to Hu Yaoming (e-mail: yhu@amnh.org) or
Wang Yuanqing (e-mail: wang.yuanqing@pa.ivpp.ac.cn)

Abstract  A multituberculate skeleton from the Lower Cretaceous Yixian
Formation at Dawangzhangzi, Lingyuan City, Liaoning Province, Northeast
China, provides new morphological information for early multituberculates.
The specimen is the holotype of Sinobaatar lingyuanensis gen. et sp. nov. It
has a narrow skull that lacks the superorbital crest or postorbital process.
The dental formula is 
3・?・5・2/1・0・3・2. The dental 
especially that of cheek teeth, of S. lingyuanensis is similar to that of
Eobaatar, which places it in the family Eobaataridae. The postcranial
skeleton of Sinobaatar is similar to that of other multituberculates. As in
Holotheria, Metatarsal V of Sinobaatar articulates only with the cuboid and
has no contact with the calcaneus, which probably represents the primitive
condition of multituberculates. Nine carpals of Sinobaatar resemble those of
Zhangheotherium, except the centrale being larger than the trapezoid. The
dental features of Sinobaatar show again that eobaatarids are obviously
intermediate between Late Jurassic multituberculates and the later forms.
Because eobaatarids are only known from the Early Cretaceous, the finding of
Sinobaatar, therefore, supports that the age of the Jehol Biota is most
likely Early Cretaceous.