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  1. Abstract The middle Eocene Washakie Formation of Wyoming, USA, provides a rare window, within a single depositional basin, into the faunal transition that followed the early Eocene warming events. Based on extensive examination, we report a minimum of 27 species of carnivorous mammals from this formation, more than doubling the previous taxic count. Included in this revised list are a new species of carnivoraform, Neovulpavus mccarrolli n. sp., and up to ten other possibly new taxa. Our cladistic analysis of early Carnivoraformes incorporating new data clarified the array of middle Eocene taxa that are closely related to crown-group Carnivora. These anatomically relatively derived carnivoraforms collectively had an intercontinental distribution in North America and east Asia, exhibiting notable variations in body size and dental adaptation. This time period also saw parallel trends of increase in body size and dental sectoriality in distantly related lineages of carnivores spanning a wide range of body sizes. A new, model-based Bayesian analysis of diversity dynamics accounting for imperfect detection revealed a high probability of substantial loss of carnivore species between the late Bridgerian and early Uintan North American Land Mammal ‘Ages’, coinciding with the disappearance of formerly common mammals such as hyopsodontids and adapiform primates. Concomitant with this decline in carnivore diversity, the Washakie vertebrate fauna underwent significant disintegration, as measured by patterns of coordinated detection of taxa at the locality level. These observations are consistent with a major biomic transition in the region in response to climatically induced opening-up of forested habitats. UUID: http://zoobank.org/9162f1a6-a12c-4d55-ba1d-dc66e8cda261 
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  2. Placental mammals had a smaller brain-to-body-size ratio after the dinosaur extinction but later developed the largest vertebrate brains. 
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  3. Abstract Cranial skeletal material of the Eocene palaeanodont Metacheiromys marshi was examined using high-resolution CT scans. The present study represents the first time that CT scans have been conducted on skulls of this extinct fossorial mammal. The bony osteology of the auditory region is described in detail, including the ectotympanic and entotympanic, the petrosal in both tympanic and endocranial views, and the middle ear ossicles. The results of this investigation confirm a number of derived resemblances between palaeanodonts and xenarthrans, including a large entotympanic element in the medial wall of the auditory bulla, the presence of an anteroventral process of the tegmen tympani, and a posttemporal canal. However, the present study also provides novel derived auditory features linking palaeanodonts and pangolins, consistent with current understanding of palaeanodont phylogenetic relationships, including the absence of an ectotympanic styliform process, a posterolaterally oriented aperture to the cochlear fossula, and a convex mallear head / concave incudal head. Several autapomorphic features characterizing the auditory osteology of Metacheiromys are also noted. The presence of a large, spherical mallear head, and of a capacious tympanic cavity extended into sinuses in surrounding bones, likely represent adaptations for fossoriality, consistent with palaeobiological inferences drawn from the postcranial anatomy of Metacheiromys . 
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