Gigantism Precedes Filter Feeding in Baleen Whale Evolution

@article{Fordyce2018GigantismPF,
  title={Gigantism Precedes Filter Feeding in Baleen Whale Evolution},
  author={Robert David Ewan Fordyce and Felix Georg Marx},
  journal={Current Biology},
  year={2018},
  volume={28},
  pages={1670-1676.e2}
}
Baleen whales (Mysticeti) are the largest animals on Earth, thanks to their ability to filter huge volumes of small prey from seawater. Mysticetes appeared during the Late Eocene, but evidence of their early evolution remains both sparse and controversial [1, 2], with several models competing to explain the origin of baleen-based bulk feeding [3-6]. Here, we describe a virtually complete skull of Llanocetus denticrenatus, the second-oldest (ca. 34 Ma) mysticete known. The new material… Expand
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