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Amphicyonidae
Amphicyon ingens
Amphicyon ingens skeleton
Scientific Classification
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Mammalia
Order Carnivora
Family †Amphicyonidae

The Amphicyonidae is an extinct family of large terrestrial carnivores, which inhabited North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa from the Middle Eocene subepoch to the Pleistocene epoch 46.2—1.8 Mya, existing for approximately 44.4 million years.

Amphicyonids, often referred to as "bear dogs", crossed from Europe to North America during the Miocene epoch and are considered an Old World taxon. The earliest to appear is the (rather large) Ysengrinia (30—20 Mya), followed by Cynelos (24—7 Mya) and Amphicyon (23—5 Mya). These animals would have followed ungulates and other mammals to the New World for a period of about 7 million years. The New World amphicyonids of the subfamilies Daphoeninae (42-16 Mya) and Temnocyoninae (33-20 Mya) coexisted with the Old World counterparts. Note that the (often similar looking) members of the family Hemicyonidae are also often called "bear-dogs".

Amphicyonids were as small as 5 kg (11 lb) and as large as 100 to 600 kg (220 to 1,300 lb) and evolved from wolf-like to bear-like. Early amphicyonids, such as Daphoenodon, possessed a digitigrade posture and locomotion (walking on their toes), while many of the later and larger species were plantigrade or semiplantigrade. The amphicyonids were obligate carnivores, unlike the Canidae, which are hypercarnivores or mesocarnivores.

While amphicyonids have traditionally been viewed as closely related to ursids (bears), some evidence suggests they may instead be basal caniforms. (Hunt, 2004b). They were about as tall as the American Black Bear and were most likely ambushers because their legs were made for short, sudden bursts of speed. Bear dogs also nested their young in underground burrows.

Genera

Subfamily Amphicyoninae

Genus Agnotherium
 A. antiquus
 A. grivense
Genus Amphicyon
 A. frendens
 A. bohemicus
 A. castellanus
 A. caucasicus
 A. galushai
 A. giganteus
 A. ingens
 A. intermedius 
 A. laugnacensis
 A. longiramus
 A. major
 A. pontoni
 A. reinheimeri
 A. riggsi
 A. tairumensis
 A. ulungurensis
Genus Amphicyonopsis
 A. serus
Genus Brachycyon
 B. reyi
 B. palaeolycos
 B . gaudryi
Genus Cynelos
 C. caroniavorus
 C. crassidens
 C. helbingo
 C. idoneus
 C. jourdan
 C. lemanensis
 C. pivetaui
 C. rugosidens
 C. schlosseri
 C. sinapius
Genus Cynodictis
 C. lacustris
Genus Euroamphicyon
 E. olisiponensis
Genus Gobicyon
 G. macrognathus
 G. zhegalloi
Genus Guangxicyon
 G. sinoamericanus
Genus Haplocyon
 H. elegans
 H. crucians
Genus Haplocyonoides
 H. mordax
 H. serbiae
 H. ponticus
Genus Haplocyonopsis
Genus Harpagocyon
Genus Heducides
Genus Ischyrocyon
 I. gidleyi
Genus Paradaphoenus
 P. cuspigerus
 P. minimus
 P. tooheyi
Genus Pericyon
Genus Pliocyon
 P. medius
 P. robustus
Genus Proamphicyon
Genus Protemnocyon
Genus Pseudarctos
 P. bavaricus
Genus Pseudamphicyon
 P. bavaricus
Genus Pseudocyon
 P. sansaniensis
 P. steinheimensis
 P. styriacus
Genus Pseudocyonopsis
 P. ambiguus
 P. antiquus
 P. quercensis
Genus Symplectocyon
Genus Ysengrinia
 Y. americanus
 Y. depereti
 Y. geraniana
 Y. ginsburg
 Y. tolosana

Subfamily Daphoeninae

Genus Adilophontes
 A. brachykolos
Genus Borocyon
Genus Brachyrhyncocyon
 B. dodgei
 B. montanus
Genus Daphoenictis
 D. tedfordi
Genus Daphoenodon
 D. falkenbachi
 D. notionastes
 D. robustum
 D. periculosus
 D. skinneri
 D. superbus
Genus Daphoenus
 D. dodgei 
 D. felinus
 D. hartshornianus
 D. inflatus
 D. lambei
 D. nebrascensis
 D. socialis
 D. transversus
 D. vetus
Genus Paradaphoenus
 P. cuspigerus
 P. minimus
 P. tooheyi

Subfamily Temnocyoninae

Genus Mammacyon
 M. obtusidens
Genus Temnocyon
 T. altigenis
 T. ferox
 T. percussor
 T. venator

Subfamily Thanmastocyoninae

Gallery

  • Daphoenus skull
  • Restoration of Daphoenus
  • Amphicyon jaws
  • Amphicyon ingens skeleton
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