Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class  ???
Subclass Tetrapodomorpha
Order  ???
Family  ???
Genus Hynerpeton
1st Species Hynerpeton bassetti
Other attributes
Time Range 365-363 mya
Location United States of America
Name Meaning Creeping animal from Hyner
Physical Dimensions 1.2 meters long
Dietary Classification Carnivore

Hynerpeton is an amphibian from the Late Devonian of the United States of America. It was named in 1994 by Ted Daeschler and his crew. It was one of the first amphibians to equally live on both land and water, and has reevaluated the perception about how the tetrapods colonized the land.


Hynerpeton resembled the basic primitive amphibian. It was a fish-like tetrapod with 4 legs, a long tail similar to that of a tadpole, a bulky body, and a big, semi-flat head with big jaws. Its body would have been covered in scaly skin.


Hynerpeton was a predator, preying on insects and small fish. Its teeth were small yet sharp, and were used to get a hold of struggling prey as the amphibian swallowed them whole.


Hynerpeton was an evolutionary step-up from earlier tetrapods, as it had features that more resembled those of later amphibians as well as reptiles. For example, it had legs that were longer and more adapted to exhibiting a quadrupedal gait than earlier tetrapods, whose legs were more useful for crawling over underwater obstacles and dragging themselves across the land. As well as this, while earlier tetrapods only had simple lungs as well as gills, Hynerpeton had no gills at all, using semi-complex lungs as its main breathing system. In fact, Hynerpeton is generally thought to be a link between the primitive tetrapods of the Devonian and the advanced amphibians of the Carboniferous.

In popular cultureEdit

Hynerpeton was featured in the 1st episode of the 2005 documentary Walking with Monsters, where it is shown as evolving straight from Cephalaspis over a course of 63 (or 59 million years (of course, many evolutionary steps such as Eusthenopteron and Tiktaalik are ignored)); as well as this, it is shown as competing for mates by doing push-up contests (this behavior is based on the fact that its forelimbs were strong, and could actually be used to lift the body upwards). At the end of the segment, one male gets killed by a Hyneria during the mating process; despite this, the eggs are successfully deposited in the water, later evolving into Petrolacosaurus eggs over a course of 58 million years.

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