Developing neurons transiently grow numerous spine- or filopodium-like dendritic protrusions (SLDPs). Electron microscopy on identified input and intracellular staining of postsynaptic cells were performed to gain insight into their significance. Newborn kitten-corticorubral axons, labelled with biocytin, commonly made synapses on SLDP, often multiply invaginated by the SLDPs. Correspondingly, intracellularly labelled kitten rubrospinal cells had numerous SLDPs. Taking into account that corticorubral synapses are largely formed on dendritic shafts in adult cats, it is likely that the SLDPs play some important role in the development of corticorubral synapses. We hypothesize that rubrospinal cells elongate SLDPs searching for corticorubral axons to form synapses.