Phosphatherium escuillei (Gheerbrant, Sudre & Cappetta 1996)
Size: The Phosphatherium was about 60 cm long. Weight estimated at up to 15 kg.
Known locations: North Africa
Time period: Latest Paleocene - early Eocene (56 million years ago)
Phosphatherium escuillei is an extinct, primitive proboscidean that lived from the Late Paleocene until the early Eocene some 56 million years ago of North Africa.
Phosphatherium is known primarily from fragmentary dentary materials from the latest Paleocene deposits of the Ouled Abdoun Basin, Morocco, which date from the Thanetian epoch. It is the smallest (estimated to be about 60 cm long and weigh 15 kilograms) and the second oldest known member of Proboscidea. Only Eritherium is older. Like its later relative, Moeritherium, the animal was probably an amphibious browser that fed on aquatic plants, akin to a dog-sized hippopotamus.