Hexaprotodon karumensis
KNMER 1308
Age approx. 1.60 Million Years Digital Capture: N/A

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In the later part of the geological sequence from the Koobi Fora Formation the fossil hippos are represented by four known species, Hippopotamus gorgops, aff. H. protamphibius, aff. H. aethiopicus, and aff. H. karumensis (formerly Hexaprotodon karumensis). Aff H. karumensis was the most common of the four genera in the Turkana Basin. The orbits are positioned high on the skull with an increased elevation of the eye sockets (orbits) through time (ER 30366). H. karumensis has small upper canines, and the small lower canines, as seen in this mandible, are set widely apart. The front of the lower jaw changes with time forming more of a projecting shelf in the later forms. The family Hippopotamidae emerged and evolved in Africa and migrated from Africa to Asia on several occasions. Hippos were abundant and diverse in the fossil record with some 40 different species recognized, however the modern day distribution is restricted to only two genera is in sub-saharan Africa, the common hippo and the pygmy hippo, which today is only found in west Africa. The earliest record of the subfamily Hippopotaminae is known from the Nawata Formation at Lothagam in the Turkana Basin where it was represented by several species 7 million years ago.


The specimens displayed on this site are published specimens unless otherwise indicated. The information about the artifacts on this site is of a general nature only and unless otherwise indicated, has been written either by members of the African Fossils team, the National Museums of Kenya or the Turkana Basin Institute. The printed models are not of a high enough resolution to enable accurate scientific measurements and have generated using photogrammetry and in some cases low resolution digital models have been generated using laser scanners.

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