Friday mystery object #99 This week I have something pretty cool for you to identify: Any idea what it is? As usual you can put your comments, questions and suggestions below and I’ll do my best to answer. Good luck! Share this:PrintEmailTwitterFacebookRedditLinkedInPinterestLike this:Like Loading... Related
Looks like a juvenile carnivore, some canid perhaps? It looks like some teeth are just erupting. Is the upper carnassial supposed to be like this?
Really huge lower molar, though…interesting….
Juvenile carnivore it is
Hmm. Mammai, looks carnivoran, and rather doglike. Not enough molars, and the skull is too short for a thylacine though. My first though was hyaena, based on the size of the rear molar, but the rest of the teeth are nowhere near chunky enough. And I really don’t know what to make of the spiky premolars.
Those massive carnassials are quite hyaena-like, but you’re right about the rest of the teeth
Following on from a couple of other hints, Lycaeon pictus? Presumably the last two molars haven’t erupted in the lower jaw. But the “double canine” and that huge lower molar seem really distinctive- at least compared to all the other wolves dogs and suchlike that I’d seen elsewhere. Would I be right in saying the spiky premolars are milk teeth? The adults skulls don’t have teeth quite like that.
a juvenile Dire Wolf? I’m going with extinct canine of some type.
hmmm no…back of skull is too round to be a dire wolf…
These guys are still extant (for now at least…)
Okay, fairl sure I’ll be wrong here, but just in case I’m not…
Could I paint you a picture of this animal?
Like it! Yes I think you probably could.
Too chunky for a fox
In that case, if this is what I think it is, then I was lucky enough to see a pack of them dismembering a small antelope; not so lucky for the antelope, though.
Do I see four lower premolars and two molars? In which case it seems consistent with a canid species I have in mind…
…or maybe not…the skull is also too chunky for the one I was thinking of…but I think I got it now. I finally spotted this animal while hunting on the internet…
I sometimes find these ones a bit tricky. Need to brush up on my skulls skills
I’ve been meaning to write a guide to skull id for ages – hopefully it will happen eventually!
Wow, coolest-looking skull yet! Love the sci-fi looking double canines (I know they’re not, but they look awesome)…
I’m going to guess: Huge carnassials are hyena convergent, and it’s everyone’s favourite cartoon marsupial whirlwind of destruction…
You’re right about convergence on hyaenas, but not Taz…
I was wondering whether it was a juvenile, although I’m usually really bad at spotting that – would explain why it looks doglike but doesn’t have enough cheek teeth.
I do believe I saw one of these on Monday (I was at the zoo), and blogged about at least one population of them dodging the Allee effect last month. I’ll avoid painting any more of a picture than that, though.
It is indeed juvenile and I think you have it!
changed my mind after a quick Google-image-ing (cheater!) and decided it’s now the inspiration for the nickname of another fictional character, a reluctant hero with a peculiar skeleton, the coolest of his bunch, the one with the “X” factor…
Google image is not cheating! It’s not a Wolverine though.
Does being cool suggest very high latitudes rather than Africa? Must say I am rather proud of having spotted the liklihood of it being a juvenile straightoff … a juvenile what I am not sure about, though I suspect canid … that’s as far as I can get without taking into account the additonal info from those more knowledgeable than I …
Nope – not cool in terms of temperature. Well done on spotting that it’s a juvenile and you’re right that it’s a canid. Nothing wrong with getting ideas from other posters though!
Is it a honey badger?
Nope – not a honey badger!
Carlos – Googling is not cheating! That’s how I tackle the mystery objects every week.
At least I’m learning – my skull identification skills are improving rapidly!
Although I’m obviously a bit late to the (hunting) party this week as it looks like the mystery is solved.
These puzzles are not only fun, but a great way to learn; from Paolo, other people’s comments and, of course, from researching on Google. I’ve learned more about comparative anatomy in the last two months of attempting these puzzles than I did during the entire three years I spent getting a zoology degree (I did learn some other stuff doing that, though).
😉 Like it!
Or perhaps an African hunting dog?
I’m with dave, definately a Lycaon pictus – painted hunting dog, with those double canines.