from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. Any member of the Caviomorpha, a rodent infraorder or parvorder that unites all South American hystricognaths.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
Why were they joined by the entire infraorder of caviomorph rodents, including guinea pigs, agoutis, pacas, maras, capybaras, chinchillas and lots of others, a large group of characteristically South American rodents, found nowhere else?
Both lived alongside New World vultures, flamingos, screamers and caviomorph rodents [the adjacent photo, of the brontornithine Paraphysornis, is borrowed from Cais de Gaia's phorusrhacid blog post].
Although biogeographic and body size similarities suggest that it may be related to the Puerto Rican giant hutia Elasmodontomys, the Antillean large-bodied rodent family Heptaxodontidae is now interpreted as invalid, and it is impossible to assign Tainotherium to a particular caviomorph family in the absence of associated craniodental material.