card
040

Kryptobaatar

OLogy Series
specimen
card
040

Kryptobaatar

OLogy Series
specimen

Although extinct today, this gopher-sized mammal thrived during the Mesozoic Era for about two million years. Kryptobaatar belonged to a group of mammals called multituberculates, small mammals with bumps on their teeth. Its name means "hidden hero."

When did the first mammals appear in the fossil record?

200 million years ago

500 million years ago

900 million years ago

Are you right?

Correct!

Based on fossil evidence, the first mammals appeared during the Triassic Period about 200 million years ago.

Kryptobaatar used its long incisors and cheek teeth to eat what?

small lizards

other multituberculates

nuts, seeds, and plants

Are you right?

Correct!

Kryptobaatar was an herbivore (plant-eater) that used its teeth to cut and crush seeds or other plant parts.

Kryptobaatar probably lived in tree trunks, where it stored nuts.

Fact
or
Fiction
?

Fiction

Perhaps you're thinking of a squirrel? Kryptobaatar probably lived in burrows (holes dug in the ground).

Kryptobaatar, an extinct multituberculate, is closely related to modern rodents, such as beavers and gophers.

Fact
or
Fiction
?

Fiction

Although multituberculates resemble modern rodents, these two groups are unrelated. In paleontology, looks can be deceiving.

Kryptobataar
(KRIP-toe-bah-TAR)
Locality Found: Mongolia
Age: Cretaceous 80 MYA Size: 6 inches long
Prepared For: 2000 Museum exhibit Fighting Dinosaurs
Characteristics: These small early mammals lived in burrows and probably used their long incisors (front teeth) for chewing nuts and plants.

Image credits: courtesy of AMNH.