A eutherian mammal from the Early Cretaceous of Russia and biostratigraphy of the Asian Early Cretaceous vertebrate assemblages



Prokennalestes abramovi n.sp. is described based on M2 from the upper Barremian-middle Aptian (Early Cretaceous) Mogoito locality in Transbaikalia, Russia. It differs from the Mongolian species of Prokennalestes (Khoboor, early Albian) by a combination of one primitive character (steeper and shorter lingual slopes of the paracone and metacone), one more derived character (larger size), and some characters of uncertain polarity (small preparastyle, lack of labial cuspules along the ectoflexus). P. abramovi n.sp. is the oldest eutherian mammal so far described, and its discovery extends the known geological range of Eutheria by 10–15 Ma. The Tsagantsabian land-vertebrate biochron can be defined by a dominance of sinemyid turtles; the Khukhtekian by a dominance of macrobaenids.