From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Temporal range: Pleistocene
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Family: Mustelidae
Subfamily: Lutrinae
Genus: Cyrnaonyx
Helbing, 1935
Species: C. antiqua
Binomial name
Cyrnaonyx antiqua
(de Blainville, 1841)

Cyrnaonyx is an extinct genus of Lutrinae, otters from the Pleistocene. It was originally described by Helbing based on materials from France and he also attributed material from Corse to it. The latter appeared to belong to another species and genus, Algarolutra majori. The only species of Cyrnaonyx is C. antiqua. It is known from the Pleistocene (Holsteinian to Eemian/Weichselian) of Europe: France, Germany, Netherlands, Southern England and probably Italy.

The dentition is more robust than in the common otter Lutra and the diet probably consisted of more crustaceans and less fish, like in modern Aonyx. The skull was hover not arched as in the latter which points to a more aquatic, swimming behaviour.


  • Malatesta, A. & Willemsen, G. F.: Algarolutra g.n. established for a fossil otter of the Sardinia island. Geologica Romana 25: 285-286 (1986)
  • Willemsen, G. F.: A revision of the Pliocene and Quaternary Lutrinae from Europe. Scripta Geologica vol 101 (1992).