Sub-class Placentalia

Order Bibymalagasia

Family Plesiorycteropodidae (Malagasy bibymalagasy)

Species Plesiorycteropus madagascariensis

Long considered to be a close relative of the living aardvark (Orycteropus afer), Plesiorycteropus is now thought to represent a wholly separate evolutionary lineage. This species is known only from a few localities in Madagascar, where it lived until about 1,000 years ago or less. Only the size of a small dog, the bibymalagasy was probably a burrower that fed on social insects. It evidently became extinct at the same time as some of the endemic hippos and giant lemurs, perhaps because of environmental deterioration. There are no know associations with humans.

See also: MacPhee, R.D.E., 1994. Morphology, adaptations, and relationships of Plesiorycteropus, and a diagnosis of a new order of eutherian mammals. Bull. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist., 220:1-214.