Named By: O. Lambert, M. Martínez-Cáeres, G. Bianucci, E. Steurbaut, M. Urbina & C. Muizon - 2017.
Classification: Chordata, Mammalia, Cetacea.
Species: M. selenensis (type).
Size: Holotype estimated to be about 3.75 to 4 meters long.
Known locations: Peru - Yumaque Formation.
Time period: Priabonian of the Eocene.
Fossil representation: Partial skull and post cranial skeleton.
is a genus of primitive whale
that lived in waters around South
America during the Eocene. Mystacodon is a
somewhere between the predatory toothed whale ancestors and later
filter feeding baleen whales. Mystacodon however
is thought to have
been a suction feeder. This is where the whale would open its mouth
creating a sudden vacuum in the water. Any small fish nearby are
literally sucked in to the mouth which then closes around them.
- Earliest Mysticete from the Late Eocene of Peru Sheds New Light on the Origin of Baleen Whales. - Current Biology 27:17. - O. Lambert, M. Martínez-Cáeres, G. Bianucci, E. Steurbaut, M. Urbina & C. Muizon - 2017.