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Apidium phiomense


Apidium phiomense has a dental formula of 2:1:3:3 on both the upper and lower jaws (Fleagle, 1988). The incisors are small in this species, and the canines are sexually dimorphic (Fleagle, 1988). The molars have low, rounded cusps and a thick enamel (Fleagle, 1988). On the lower molars there is a hypoconulid that is located on the midline of each lower molar (Martin, 1990). This species has a fused mandibular symphysis (Fleagle, 1988). This species had a short snout and small eyes suggesting that this was a diurnal species (Fleagle, 1988). This species shows postorbital closure (Conroy, 1990). This species has a platyrrhine-like medial epicondyle of the humerus (Conroy, 1990). Apidium phiomense has hindlimbs which were longer than the forelimbs and a long ischium (Fleagle, 1988). The femoral neck is oriented at a right angle to the shaft, and the distal femoral condyles are quite deep (Fleagle, 1988). The tibia is long and the fibula is attached to the tibia for 40 percent of its length (Fleagle, 1988). The ankle joint has a hinge capable of rapid flexion and extension (Fleagle, 1988). This species had a scapula which is similar to the extant species Saimiri sciureus (Fleagle, 1988).

Apidium phiomense was found in Africa and was discovered in the country of Egypt (Fleagle, 1988). This species occurred during the early Oligocene (Fleagle, 1988).

Based upon dental morphology this species probably was a frugivore which also consumed seeds (Fleagle, 1988).

The postcranial characteristics suggest that Apidium phiomense was a quadrupedal leaper, much like that of Saimiri sciureus (Fleagle, 1988).

Conroy, G.C. 1990. Primate Evolution. W.W. Norton and Co.: New York.

Fleagle, J.G. 1988. Primate Adaptation and Evolution. Academic Press: New York.

Martin, R.D. 1990. Primate Origins and Evolution: A Phylogenetic Reconstruction. Princeton University Press: Princeton, New Jersey.

Last updated: November 15, 2001

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