November 2014
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Print ISSN: 0031-0247
Online ISSN: 2274-0333
Frequency: biannual

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Palaeovertebrata Vol.38-1:November 2014

Table of contents


Two new scyliorhinid shark species (Elasmobranchii, Carcharhiniformes, Scyliorhinidae), from the Sülstorf Beds (Chattian, Late Oligocene) of the southeastern North Sea Basin, northern Germany.
Thomas Reinecke
Keywords: Chattian; Elasmobranchii; North Sea Basin; Scyliorhinidae; Scyliorhinus

doi: 10.18563/pv.38.1.e1

    Based on isolated teeth two new scyliorhinid shark species, Scyliorhinus biformis nov. sp. and Scyliorhinus suelstorfensis nov. sp., are described from the Sülstorf Beds, early-middle Chattian, of Mecklenburg, northeastern Germany. They form part of a speciose assemblage of necto-benthic sharks and batoids which populated the warm-temperate to subtropical upper shelf sea of the south-eastern North Sea Basin. 

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A new and primitive species of Protophiomys (Rodentia, Hystricognathi) from the late middle Eocene of Djebel el Kébar, Central Tunisia
Laurent Marivaux, El M. Essid, Wissem Marzougui, Hayet Khayati Ammar, Sylvain Adnet, Bernard Marandat, Gilles Merzeraud, Rodolphe Tabuce and Monique Vianey-Liaud
Keywords: Adaptive radiation; Bartonian; Dental morphology; North Africa; Paleobiogeography

doi: 10.18563/pv.38.1.e2

    Based on fossil discoveries and phylogenetic studies, an Eocene Asian origin for hystricognathous rodents and anthropoid primates has gained strong support in recent years. The two groups then invaded both Africa and South America, which promoted their evolutionary success. However, the fossil record has so far failed to constrain the nature and precise timing of these pivotal dispersal events. In Africa, given the apparent absence of hystricognaths and anthropoids in early to early middle Eocene localities, it is suggested that these mammal groups dispersed from Asia to Africa sometime during the middle Eocene. In this paper, we report the discovery of several isolated teeth of a rodent from a new vertebrate locality situated in central Tunisia (Djebel el Kébar, KEB-1), dating from the late middle Eocene (Bartonian, ~39.5 Myr). These fossils document a diminutive new species of Protophiomys (P. tunisiensis nov. sp.), a basal genus of hystricognathous rodents which is well known from several North African mammalian-bearing localities of the end of the Eocene. The teeth of P. tunisiensis display a suite of anatomical details comparable with those observed in the other species of the genus, but with a lesser degree of development. Such an apparent primitive evolutionary stage is corroborated by the greater antiquity of this Tunisian species. P. tunisiensis nov. sp. is so far the most ancient representative of hystricognaths in Africa. However, it can be expected that hystricognaths were already present on that landmass given the new data on early caviomorphs recently reported from South America (at ~41 Myr). The arrival of hystricognaths in Africa from South Asia certainly predates the depositional period of the Kébar sediments, but perhaps not by much time. 

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Rodent paleocommunities from the Oligocene of Ulantatal (Inner Mongolia, China)
Helder Gomes Rodrigues, Laurent Marivaux and Monique Vianey-Liaud
Keywords: late Paleogene; Mammalia; Mongolian Plateau; Rodentia; Systematics

doi: 10.18563/pv.38.1.e3

    The Oligocene deposits of the Ulantatal area in Inner Mongolia (China) contain among the richest mammalian faunas from Asia. To date, only some parts of the rodent faunas have been described. Here, we propose to review the rodent faunal lists for each site, including the description of a few new rodent specimens. We describe three additional rodent species: the Cylindrodontidae Anomoemys lohiculus, the Eomyidae Asianeomys sp., and the Dipodidae Litodonomys huangheensis. This study allows us to constrain the stratigraphic range of Anomoemys lohiculus, which ranged from the late Early Oligocene to the early Late Oligocene in this area. Asianeomys sp. and Litodonomys huangheensis are dated from the latest Oligocene. These Oligocene deposits consist now of more than 70 species of mammals if we include the fauna from Kekeamu. This latter corresponds to the basal part of the Ulantatal Formation and could be dated biochronologically from the earliest Oligocene. When compared to the faunas from the Valley of Lakes in Central Mongolia, the Ulantatal faunas present a great majority of rodents, and this difference can be partly explained by sampling and description biases regarding macro-mammals. This study also shows that variations existed between Inner and Central Mongolia, especially regarding the composition of the rodent paleocommunities. However, the assessment of their evolutionary history in this part of Asia with respect to the important climate and environment changes, require further precisions and more material than current data allow. 

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Book Reviews

There were giants upon the earth in those days
Pierre-Olivier Antoine
Keywords: Eurasia; history of science; Indricotheriinae; Paleogene; Rhinocerotoidea

doi: 10.18563/pv.38.1.e4

    Rhinoceros Giants: the Paleobiology of Indricotheres. Donald R. Prothero. Life of the Past Collection, Indiana University Press; 160 pp. (66 b&w illustrations). Hardback (7x10”): USD 42.00 plus shipping. ISBN: 978-0-253-00819-0. E-book: USD 34.99. ISBN: 978-0-253-00826-8.

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