Hapalops

Name: Hapalops (Gentle face).
Phonetic: Hap-a-lops.
Named By: Florentino Ameghino - 1887.
Classification: Chordata, Mammalia, Xenarthra, Megatheriidae.
Species: H. antistis, H. indifferens, H. longiceps, H. longipes, H. latus, H. cadens, H. congermanus, H. gallaicus. More species names do exist but the validity of all of these has been disputed.
Diet: Herbivore.
Size: 1 meter long.
Known locations: South America.
Time period: Mid Miocene.
Fossil representation: Multiple specimens.

       At one meter long Hapalops is not even close to the later giant ground sloths such as Glossotherium and Megatherium,‭ ‬but then groups of large mammals usually have their origins in smaller ancestors.‭ ‬Although not as awe inspiring in terms of size,‭ ‬Hapalops probably could do something that was impossible for its later giant relatives to do and this is actually climb into trees.‭ ‬This may have enabled it to stay out of the way of‭ ‬ground‭ ‬predators like the sabre-toothed marsupial Thylacosmilus as well as phorusrhacid terror birds like Kelenken and Brontornis.‭ ‬On occasions when on the ground,‭ ‬Hapalops probably walked on its knuckles to protect the long claws that were used to hook around branches.


Hapalops, Megalonyx, Eremotherium, Megatherium, Glossotherium, Mylodon, Paramylodon, Nothrotheriops.

Further reading
- Mamiferos Cretaceos de la Argentina. Segunda contribucion al conocimiento de la fauna mastologica de las capas con restos de Pyrotherium. - Boletin Instituto Geografico Argentino 18:406-521. - F. Ameghino - 1897.
- Enumeration Synoptique des especes de mammiferes fossiles des formations Eocenes de Patagonie. - Boletin de la Academia Nacional de Ciencias en Cordoba (Republica Argentina) 13:259-452. - F. Ameghino - 1894.
- Indicators of locomotor habits in Xenarthrans: Evidence for locomotor heterogeneity among fossil sloths. - Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, 13(2): 230-242. - J. White - 1993.



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