Article: A new basal carnivoramorphan (Mammalia) from the 'Bridger B' (Black's Fork Member, Bridger Formation, Bridgerian NALMA, middle Eocene) of Wyoming, USA
A new genus and species of basal non-Viverravidae Carnivoramorpha, Dawsonicyon isami, is named and described. This new taxon is based upon DMNH 19585, an almost complete skeleton, which was collected from the Black's Fork Member (informal 'Bridger B' subunit) of the Bridger Formation in southwestern Wyoming, USA. The specimen is incorporated into an existing craniodental data matrix, and the associated phylogenetic analyses support the identification of this species as a new basal carnivoramorphan. This new taxon is dentally compared to all known genera of non-viverravid basal carnivoramorphans, as well as with all known species of the problematic genus Miacis. Postcrania are compared in detail with other described specimens of non-viverravid basal carnivoramorphans and more generally with known postcrania of viverravids. Preliminary functional interpretations of a scansorial locomotor mode are offered for this new taxon. Its implications for the diversity of middle Eocene basal carnivoramorphans is briefly discussed, including expansion of the already high diversity in the Black's Fork Member of the Bridger Formation (at least 11 species in 8 genera).