Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Phenacolemur Matthew, 1915

Archaic mammal known from the late Paleocene to middle or late Eocene of North America and Europe belonging to the Plesiadapiformes family Paromomyidae; four species; may be descended from Paromomys. Known from dentition, jaws, and cranial fragments. Dental formula: 2.1.3.3/1.0.1.3; procumbent incisors more pronounced than in other paromomyids; lower anterior molars reduced in height; diet uncertain, but possibly fruit, perhaps with insect supplements. Body mass of the species ranges between 50 and 400 g. Known appendicular skeleton has been interpreted as adapted for gliding and as showing a very close relationship to the Dermoptera; others dispute this and think that the limb bones are more robust than is found in any living glider.

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