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Temporal range: Late Oligocene, 27.3–25.2  Ma
Scientific classification Red Pencil Icon.png
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Artiodactyla
Infraorder: Cetacea
Family: Eomysticetidae
Genus: Tohoraata
Boessenecker and Fordyce, 2014
  • T. raekohaoBoessenecker and Fordyce, 2014 (type)
  • T. waitakiensis(Marples, 1956)

Tohoraata is a genus of eomysticetid baleen whale from the Late Oligocene (Chattian) of New Zealand. There are two recognized species, T. raekohao and T. waitakiensis. [1]



Tohoraata is a member of the family Eomysticetidae, a family of primitive baleen-bearing mysticetes (chaeomysticetes). The type species, T. raekohao, is based on OU 22178, a partial skull associated with a thoracic vertebra and five ribs, collected from the Maerewhenua Member of the Otekaike Limestone. On the other hand, T. waitakiensis, is known from OMC GL 402, a partial skull and five neck vertebrae collected in the Kokoamu Greensand. It was originally described as a species of Mauicetus , [2] but was eventually recognized as more primitive than the type species of Mauicetus, being closely related to Eomysticetus and Yamatocetus . [3]


Tohoraata is distinct from all eomysticetid taxa, including Tokarahia , in having a posterolaterally directed exoccipital. The two species of Tohoraata differ from each other in the structure of the tympanic bulla, and differ from Eomysticetus and Yamatocetus in possessing numerous foramina in the frontal. [1]

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  1. 1 2 Robert W. Boessenecker and R. Ewan Fordyce (2014). "A new Eomysticetid (Mammalia: Cetacea) from the Late Oligocene of New Zealand and a re-evaluation of ‘Mauicetus’ waitakiensis". Papers in Palaeontology. in press. doi:10.1002/spp2.1005.
  2. B. J. Marples. 1956. Cetotheres (Cetacea) from the Oligocene of New Zealand. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 126(4):565-580
  3. Steeman, M. E. 2007. Cladistic analysis and a revised classification of fossil and recent mysticetes. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, 150, 875–894.