Friday mystery object #380


This week I have a skull from the collections of the Dead Zoo that was in the “Unidentified” drawer I discovered a while back:

mystery380

Any idea which species this comes from?

Cryptic clues are welcome, as I think some of you might recognise this fairly quickly. Have fun!

14 thoughts on “Friday mystery object #380

  1. Lives in the middle of the Wild Wood and wears rather down-at-heel slippers when at home? (Nobody would dare tell him so, kindly though he is.)

  2. That molar (I’m assuming the two teeth preserved on the left side are P4 and M1) is huge! …
    Short-snouted Carnivoran with short post-canine row: almost cat-like general skull shape (but clearly not a cat with that rear tooth). I’m guessing it belongs to a clade most of whose members are hypercarnivorous, but this species seems to crunch a lot of hard stuff. As Remi and Palfreyman have already suggested.

  3. No credit to me: I’m just following up on Palfreyman and Remi’s hints.
    The skulls of the hinted taxon that I have seen on the WWWeb so far have the lower jaw attached, making it hard to see the shape of the upper molar (but show enough to suggest that the size, at least, is right). Best I’ve seen so far is
    http://www.skullsite.co.uk/Commonname/commonname.htm
    (To keep up the illusion that the hints are cryptic, I have substituted “Commonname” — capitalized in first occurrence, not in second — for the English vernacular word for the species.)
    —Overall size (length, width over zygoma) is almost exactly the same.
    —general shape is o.k.
    —Bullae have the same “lumpy” appearance.
    —Skullsite notes that lower jaws commonly remain attached to skull of this taxon because of the long hinge enclosing the cylindrical condyle, and we can see in Paolo’s specimen the remains of an appropriately long hinge. (This, however, is probably a feature of a more inclusive taxon. My only Carnivoran study skull at home is of … an American species that shares a common name with the European one I think Paolo’s is … and the lower jaw is actually difficult to detach: only at one angle does it slip out.)

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