Alphadon (meaning "first tooth") was a genus of small, primitive mammal that was a member of the metatherians, a group of mammals that includes modern-day marsupials. Its fossils were first discovered and named by George Gaylord Simpson in 1929.
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|Reconstruction of Alphadon sp.|
Not much is known about the appearance of Alphadon, as it is only known from teeth, a lower jaw and skull fragments. It probably grew to about 12 in (30 cm) and may have resembled a modern opossum. Judging from its teeth, it was likely an omnivore, feeding on fruits, invertebrates and possibly small vertebrates. Alphadon had a very good sense of smell and sight to track down its food, both during the day and night. Its possible whiskers could have also aided in its forge for food.
Taxonomy and classification
The species Alphadon jasoni was originally described by Storer (1991); it was subsequently transferred to the herpetotheriid genus Nortedelphys.
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