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Temporal range: Miocene
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Suborder: Caniformia
Superfamily: Arctoidea
Family: Ursidae
Subfamily: Ursinae
Tribe: Ursavini
Genus: Indarctos
  • I. salmontanus (type)
  • I. anthracitis
  • I. arctoides
  • I. atticus
  • I. bakalovi
  • I. nevadensis
  • I. oregonensis
  • I. vireti
  • I. zdanskyi

Indarctos is a genus of mammals of the bear family, Ursidae, endemic to North America, Europe, Africa, and Asia during the Miocene. It was present from ~11.1 to 5.3 Ma, existing for approximately 6.2 million years.

The oldest member is from Arizona (~11.1—7.7 Ma) and youngest is (~9.0—5.3 Ma) from Kazakhstan. In North America this animal was contemporary with Plionarctos (~10.3—3.3 Ma).


Indarctos was named by Pilgrim (1913) Its type is Indarctos salmontanus. It was assigned to Agriotheriini by Chorn and Hoffman (1978); to Ursavini by Hunt (1998); and to Ursidae by Pilgrim (1913), Carroll (1988) and Salesa et al. (2006).[1][2][3]


Body mass[edit]

Two specimens were examined by Legendre and Roth for body mass.[4]

  • Specimen 1 estimated to weigh: 244 kg
  • Specimen 2 estimated to weigh: 2517 kg

Fossil distribution[edit]

Sites and specimen ages:


  • I. nevadensis, and I. oregonensis are of North America with fossil recovery in Oregon and Nevada, USA
  • Indarctos salmontanus (Pilgrim, 1913) is the species type originating in Calcutta, India and discovered by the Geological Survey of India.



  1. ^ J. Chorn and R. S. Hoffman. 1978. Ailuropoda melanoleuca. Mammalian Species 110:1-6
  2. ^ Hunt, R. M. (1998). "Ursidae". In Jacobs, Louis; Janis, Christine M.; Scott, Kathleen L. Evolution of Tertiary Mammals of North America: Volume 1, Terrestrial Carnivores, Ungulates, and Ungulate like Mammals. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. pp. 174–195. ISBN 0-521-35519-2. 
  3. ^ M. J. Salesa, M. Antón, S. Peigné and J. Morales. 2006. Evidence of a false thumb in a fossil carnivore clarifies the evolution of pandas. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 103(2):379-382
  4. ^ S. Legendre and C. Roth. 1988. Correlation of carnassial tooth size and body weight in recent carnivores (Mammalia). Historical Biology 1(1):85-98
  5. ^ Abella J, Valenciano A, Pérez-Ramos A, Montoya P, Morales J (2013) On the Socio-Sexual Behaviour of the Extinct Ursid Indarctos arctoides: An Approach Based on Its Baculum Size and Morphology. PLoS ONE 8(9): e73711. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0073711