Dictionary > Cynodont


A cynodont pertains to any of the many small carnivorous synapsids of the clade Cynodontia. Members of the clade are considered as the ancestors of mammals. They are mammal-like animals that first appeared in the Late Permian (260 million years ago). Modern mammals are presumed to have evolved from cynodont lineage. Other groups of animals that came from ancestral cynodonts are cynognathids, traversodonts, tritylodontids, and ictidosaurs. Similar to modern mammals, the cynodonts had secondary palate in the roof of the mouth and jaw anatomy that enabled them to breathe even while chewing. They were also likely to be warm-blooded and presumably had some fur.(1) Procynosuchus spp. were extinct cynodonts and considered as one of the earliest and most basal cynodonts. Their remains were found in South Africa, Germany, and Zambia. Other cynodont genera are Exaeretodon, Diademodon, Tritylodon, and Oligokyphus.

See also


  1. “Microbiota and food residues including possible evidence of pre-mammalian hair in Upper Permian coprolites from Russia”. Lethaia. DOI:10.1111/let.12156.

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