Daphoenus is an extinct genus of North American carnivorous mammals that lived during the Eocene to late Oligocene approximately 40 to 27 million years ago. They were similar in morphology to both bears and dogs (see: Bear-Dog - Amphicyonids). The coyote-sized daphoenine beardogs (Daphoenus vetus) along with the nimravid cats, were the largest carnivorans in North America during the mid- to late Cenozoic that characterized the last 40 million years.

Daphoenus fossils found in late Oligocene rocks in the Great Plains are dated at ~28 Ma. Daphoenus survived to 27 Ma in the Pacific Northwest in the John Day beds of Oregon (Hunt, 2004).


  • Hunt, Robert M, Jr. (2004) "Global Climate and the Evolution of Large Mammalian Carnivores during the Later Cenozoic in North America" in Cenozoic Carnivores and Global Climate by Robert M. Hunt, Jr.

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