Xenarthrans (also called endentates) are a strange group of mammals that split off the main eutherian line quite early in their evolution.  Indeed, in RL, Xenarthra and Pholidota, with their oddly-articulated vertebrae and teeth, form sister taxa to all the rest of Eutheria.  In Specworld, more distant eutherian outlyers exsist, but xenarthra is still rather beyond the mammalian pale.

    Xenarthrans probably evolved in North America, but by the Eocene, they lived in North America, South America, and Europe.  During the long Eocene, the European and North American xenarthrans went extinct (the continent was only re-colonized in the Pliocene from South America).  However, the xenarthrans in South America flourished during the Oligocene and Miocene.  Although these creatures did not radiate into arboreal insectivore niches as in RL (these niches already having been taken by the didelphids), they became quite succsessful as insectivorous burrowers.

    Spec's "ant-eaters" form the dominant small insectivores of South America, and are clearly xenarthrans, possessing the clade's slow-growing, enamel-less teeth and xenarthrual articulation between their vertebrae (although insectiphags' backs are more flexible than other xenarthrans.  However, these hedge-hog like creatures are not true myrmecophagids, but a more generalized family that often mimics the pholidotes (pangolins) of RL.

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