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Re: Sengis (was RE: Pterosaur diversity (was: Re: Waimanu))

T. Michael Keesey wrote:

Yes, but this doesn't mean they've gotten smaller over time (which is what I think Nick was saying), does it? Among afrotheres, only tubulidentates (aardvarks) and tethytheres (sea cows + elephants) are large (and hyracoids are kind of medium-sized). It seems to me the ancestral afrotheres would probably have been the size of macroscelideans (sengis) and afrosoricidans (golden moles + tenrecs), i.e., fairly small.

Yes, this is what threw me too. I was thinking of elephant shrews... sorry, sengis (a much cooler name I wasn't aware of)... in the context of Cope's rule. I've been following (or tried to follow) the tortured systematic treatment of macroscelideans, including their proposed link to apheliscines (Nature 434: 497-501). But considering just how many weird and wonderful mammals are packed into the Afrotheria, it's anybody's guess what the ur-afrothere looked like - or how big it was. The apheliscines are the oldest known afrotheres (AFAIK), and they were pretty small.