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This page is part of What if the Asteroid Missed?, a project run by member KaptainWombat.

South America, like on home earth, is dominated by a wide variety of strange animals, large xenarthrans, marsupials, Notonychids and massive terrestrial sebecosuchian crocodiles. Xenarthra, the superorder to which sloths, anteaters and armadillos belong, is widespread, although only armadillos have evolved along the same lines as they did on home earth. Armadillos and their relatives have produced some large forms, but not on the same scale as the home earth Glyptodonts. The other group, to which sloths and anteaters evolved from, never diversified into true sloths and anteaters, though large ground-sloth-like forms are presant as well as tree dwelling animals. Anteaters are most likely absent because their niche has been filled by a highly specialised and unique group of dinosaurs, the Formiciphagids, probably sharing a common ancestor with the Notonychids. Marsupials are major predators, and with most northern predators being somewhat less intelligent than home earth predators, marsupials have stood their ground and are now the most common predators on the continent. Some forms began to develope elongated canines, though they were not truely saber toothed like the sabertooth cats or Thylacosmilus. The largest South American marsupial predator is the Marsupial Jaguar, the largest member of the widespread family Australeonidae (southern lions), other predators include wolf analogues, the Thylacanidae. South America is the only continent where dinosaurs have managed to produce a dominant predator, and some of the local Notonychids could give cretaceous carnivours a run for their money. The largest Notonychid is the Bearded Noto, a terror-bird-like monster that can be up to 3 metres tall and weigh almost 400 kg. Bearded Noto's look for all the world like a giant chicken with a tail, but unlike any bird, they posseses powerful clawed forelimbs and a strong, toothed jaw. They derive their name from a tuft of feathers on their chin that in old individuals can be quite substantial in length. The largest (but rarest) predators on the continent are the giant Jaguasuchids, distant relatives of the african Panzercrocs, that can also be found in southern North America. Like their african cousins, Jagugators possess long ziphodont teeth, long digitigrade legs (similar to a rhinos) and body armour. While smaller Jagugator species are absent, as their niche has been filled by mammals, the larger species dominate the northern half of the continent.

Sample Species:

MammalsEdit

  • Various xenarthrans, Xenarthra
  • Amazon geosloth, Geotherium amazonensis
  • Marsupial hound, Thylacanis secandontis
  • Marsupial jaguar, Australeo jaguarus

DinosaursEdit

  • Bearded noto, Notonychus barbatus
  • Ant-birds, Formiciphagidae

CrocodylomorphsEdit

  • Jagugators, Jaguasuchidae

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