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Temporal range: Middle Oligocene
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Infraclass: Metatheria
Order: Sparassodonta
Superfamily: Borhyaenoidea
Genus: Pharsophorus
Ameghino, 1887
  • P. lacerans
  • P. tenax

Pharsophorus is an extinct genus of borhyaenoid sparassodont that inhabited South America during the mid-to-late Oligocene epoch. Originally, Pharsophorus was though to be a borhyaenid, and was even considered to be the direct ancestor of Borhyaena, Acrocyon, and Arctodictis, but later phylogenetic analyses have shown that it is not a member of the Borhyaenidae and is only more distantly related to these forms.[1][2] Remains of Pharsophorus are known from the provinces of Mendoza, Santa Cruz, and Chubut in Argentina, as well as the fossil site of Salla in western Bolivia.[3][4] The species "Pharsophorus" antiquus, formerly assigned to this genus, was eventually made the type species of a separate genus Australohyaena.[5]


  1. ^ Marshall, Larry G. (1978). "Evolution of the Borhyaenidae, extinct South American predaceous marsupials" 117. University of California Press. pp. 1–89. ISBN 9780520095717. 
  2. ^ Forasiepi, Analía M. (2009). "Osteology of Arctodictis sinclairi (Mammalia, Metatheria, Sparassodonta) and phylogeny of Cenozoic metatherian carnivores from South America". Monografías del Museo Argentino de Ciencias Naturales 6: 1–174. 
  3. ^ Patterson, Bryan; Larry G. Marshall (1978). "The Deseadan, Early Oligocene, Marsupialia South America". Fieldiana: Geology 41 (2): 37–100. 
  4. ^ Cerdeño, Bryan (2012). "Quebrada Fiera (Mendoza), an important paleobiogeographic center in the South American late Oligocene". Estudios Geológicos: Geology 67 (2): 375–385. doi:10.3989/egeol.40519.194. 
  5. ^ Analía M. Forasiepi, M. Judith Babot and Natalia Zimicz (2014). "Australohyaena antiqua (Mammalia, Metatheria, Sparassodonta), a large predator from the Late Oligocene of Patagonia". Journal of Systematic Palaeontology. in press. doi:10.1080/14772019.2014.926403.