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Perissodactyla (Odd-Toed Ungulates Including Horses, Rhinoceroses and Tapirs)

  1. Donald R Prothero

Published Online: 19 APR 2001

DOI: 10.1038/npg.els.0001569

eLS

eLS

How to Cite

Prothero, D. R. 2001. Perissodactyla (Odd-Toed Ungulates Including Horses, Rhinoceroses and Tapirs). eLS. .

Author Information

  1. Occidental College, Los Angeles, California, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 19 APR 2001

Abstract

The mammalian order Perissodactyla, or ‘odd-toed’ ungulates, includes the living horses, rhinoceroses and tapirs, and two extinct groups, the brontotheres and chalicotheres. Over their 55 million years, they evolved into an amazing variety of forms, and about 40 million years ago, they were the dominant hoofed mammals on the planet. Since then, they have been largely replaced by the even-toed artiodactyls, and today most wild perissodactyl species are on the brink of extinction.

Keywords:

  • horse;
  • rhinoceros;
  • tapir;
  • mammals;
  • hyrax