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Morenocetus parvus

Mammalia - Cetacea - Balaenidae

Taxonomy
Morenocetus parvus was named by Cabrera (1926) [Museo de La Plata]. Its type specimen is MLP 5-11, a partial skull, and it is a 3D body fossil. Its type locality is Cerro del Castillo, Trelew, which is in an Aquitanian/Burdigalian shallow subtidal sandstone in the Gaiman Formation of Argentina.

Synonymy list
YearName and author
1926Morenocetus parvus Cabrera p. 364 figs. Fig. 1
1942Morenocetus parvus Kellogg p. 449
1996Morenocetus parvus Cozzuol p. 324
2009Morenocetus parvus Bisconti p. 153 figs. Fig. 4
2011Morenocetus parvus Cione et al. p. 428
2012Morenocetus parvus Churchill et al. p. 19
2015Morenocetus parvus Marx and Fordyce p. 4 figs. Figure 2
2017Morenocetus parvus Buono et al. p. 11

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RankNameAuthor
kingdomAnimalia()
Triploblastica
Nephrozoa
Deuterostomia
phylumChordataHaeckel 1874
subphylumVertebrata
superclassGnathostomata
Osteichthyes()
subclassSarcopterygii()
subclassDipnotetrapodomorpha(Nelson 2006)
subclassTetrapodomorpha()
Tetrapoda
Reptiliomorpha
Anthracosauria
Batrachosauria()
Cotylosauria()
Amniota
subclassSynapsida
RankNameAuthor
suborderEupelycosauria
Therapsida()
infraorderCynodontia()
Epicynodontia
infraorderEucynodontia
Probainognathia
Mammaliamorpha
Mammaliaformes
classMammalia
orderCetacea
Pelagiceti
Neoceti
suborderMysticeti
Chaeomysticeti()
familyBalaenidae()
genusMorenocetus
speciesparvus

If no rank is listed, the taxon is considered an unranked clade in modern classifications. Ranks may be repeated or presented in the wrong order because authors working on different parts of the classification may disagree about how to rank taxa.

Diagnosis
ReferenceDiagnosis
M. R. Buono et al. 2017Morenocetus is a small sized balaenid (aproximatly 5.2–5.6 m in TL) which differs from all other Balaenidae in the following unique combination of apomorphies: narrow exposure of the squamosal lateral to the exoccipital (in posterior view the transverse width of squamosal is less than 15% of the distance between sagittal plane and lateral edge of the exoccipital) and dorsal extension of the tensor tympani muscle as a deep canal on the medial side of the anterior process of the periotic.
Morenocetus differs from Peripolocetus in having a zygomatic process of the squamosal dorsoventrally expanded, in the lack of a distinct ridge delimiting the insertion surface of the tensor tympani muscle on the medial side of the anterior process, and in the lack of a dorsal deflection of the anterodorsal corner of the anterior process of the periotic.
Morenocetus differs from Balaenula sp., Balaenula astensis, Balaenella, Eubalaena and Balaena in having a transversely short supraorbital process of the frontal (the transverse length represents up to twice the anteroposterior length of the supraorbital process), paired tubercles on the supraoccipital limited to low ridges forming the lateral edges of a medial fossa (except Eubalaena australis and Eubalaena japonica), and straight lateral edges of the supraoccipital.
Morenocetus further differs from Balaenula sp., Balaenula astensis and Balaenella in having a postorbital process of the frontal oriented posteriorly, in having a crest-like parieto-squamosal suture, and in having a compound posterior process of the periotic posterolaterally oriented with respect to the longitudinal axis of the anterior process; from Balaenula sp. and Balaenula astensis in having the anterior edge of the supraorbital process of the frontal pointing posteriorly, presence of supramastoid crest of zygomatic process; from Balaenella in having a dorsal margin of the orbit located roughly
halfway between the vertex and the ventral surface of the postglenoid process, in the lack of a narial process of the frontal separating the posterior portion of the nasals, in
the lack of a tubercle at the junction of the parieto-squamosal and supraoccipital sutures, lack of a lateral tuberosity of the periotic, and in the lack of a ridge delimiting the insertion for tensor tympani muscle.
Differs from Balaena ricei and Balaena mysticetus in having a short anterior process of periotic, in the lack of a lateral tuberosity on the periotic and a distinct ridge delimiting the insertion surface for tensor tympani muscle on the medial side of the anterior process of periotic, and in the lack of a hypertrophied suprameatal fossa; from Balaena myticetus and Balaena montalionis in having a compound posterior process of the periotic exposed on the lateral skull wall; Balaena mysticetus in having the anterior edge of the supraorbital process of the frontal pointing posteriorly, optic canal ventrally open, apex of the zygomatic process of squamosal anteroventrally deflected, presence of a supramastoid crest along the dorsal surface of the zygomatic process of squamosal (but does not reach the tip of the zygomatic process), postglenoid process ventrally oriented, the proximal opening of facial canal, internal acoustic meatus and aperture for cochlear aqueduct aligned anteroposteriorly; from Balaena montalionis in the lack of a tubercle at the junction of the parieto–squamosal–supraoccipital sutures, and pterygoid sinus fossa located anterior to the foramen pseudovale.
Differs from Eubalaena (except Eubalaena shinshuensis) in having the supraorbital process of the frontal gradually sloping away ventrolaterally from the skull vertex, posteriorly oriented postorbital process, orbit positioned at half of the vertical distance between the vertex and the ventral surface of the postglenoid process, thicker orbital rim with a flat lateral surface, zygomatic process of squamosal anteroventrally deflected, ventrally oriented postglenoid process, foramen pseudovale not raised above the lateral portions of the squamosal; from Eubalaena australis, Eubalaena japonica and Eubalaena glacialis in having a ventrally open optic canal; a supramastoid crest along the dorsal surface of the zygomatic process of the squamosal; pterygoid sinus fossa located anterior to the foramen pseudovale; in lacking a distinct ridge delimiting the insertion surface of the tensor tympani muscle on the medial side of the anterior process of the periotic; compound posterior process of the periotic posterolaterally oriented with respect to the longitudinal axis of the anterior process, a rounded and short anterior process of the periotic, caudal tympanic process of the periotic with a ventrally oriented ventral border, compound posterior process of periotic exposed in the lateral skull wall, in lacking a hypertrophied suprameatal fossa and lateral tuberosity on the periotic; from Eubalaena australis, Eubalaena japonica, Eubalaena glacialis and Eubalaena shinshuensis in the posteriormost point of the exoccipital located more anteriorly than the posterior edge of the occipital condyle.
Measurements
No measurements are available
Composition: hydroxyapatitesubo
Form: roller-shapedo
Ontogeny: modification of partso
Environment: marinesubo
Locomotion: actively mobileo
Life habit: aquaticsubo
Depth habitat: surfaceo
Diet: suspension feederf
Reproduction: viviparouso
Created: 2005-06-08 10:11:09
Modified: 2005-06-08 12:11:09
Source: f = family, subo = suborder, o = order
References: Nowak 1991, Uhen 2004

Age range: base of the Aquitanian to the top of the Burdigalian or 23.03000 to 15.97000 Ma

Collections: one only


Time interval Ma Country or state Original ID and collection number
Aquitanian - Burdigalian23.03 - 15.97Argentina (Chubut) Morenocetus parvus (type locality: 47303)