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Fruitafossor is a mammal from the Late Jurassic of the United States of America. It was named in 2005 by Zhe-Xi Luo and John R. Wible. It was yet another, unique, specialized Mesozoic mammal, as it was specialized towards digging.

Physiology

Fruitafossor was a unique mammal. It had a somewhat slender, barrel-shaped body, 4 semi-erect legs (with the forelegs being more robust than the hind legs), large, blunt claws on each finger (for digging), a long tail, and a mid-sized head with small jaws. Its body would have been covered in fur.

Diet

Fruitafossor was an insectivore, preying on termites. Its small, peg-like teeth were used to crunch up termites, while its robust arms had blunt claws on each finger, and were used for digging into termite mounds.

Ecology

Fruitafossor had many adaptations similar to modern armadillos and aardvarks; for example, its teeth were small and shaped like pegs, which tells us that it would have relied on termite mounds for sustenance (since ants had evolved in the Cretaceous). As well as this, it had powerful arms and blunt claws, which allowed it to dig into the ground. With those adaptations, it would have been able to break into termite mounds and feed on all the termites there; as well as this, it would have been able to dig into the ground and hide once predators like Ornitholestes showed up. In general, Fruitafossor was yet another unique early mammalian discovered, succeeding Repenomamus and preceding Castorocauda and Volaticotherium.