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The Ctenodactylidae (Rodentia) from the Oligocene of Ulantatal (inner Mongolia, China)
Monique Vianey-Liaud, Norbert Schmidt-Kittler and Laurent Marivaux
Keywords: Adaptive radiation; Ctenodactylidae; Mongolia; Oligocene; Rodents

    This paper proposes a systematic revision of the Oligocene Mongolian Ctenodactylidae, on the basis of abundant material obtained by screen/washing operations in stratified localities of the Ulantatal area (Inner Mongolia) (UTL1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 6 & 8). A Chinese-German team has collected several thousands of isolated rodent teeth, and a number of fragmentary jaws. A new genus is identified (Alashania nov. gen. tengkoliensis nov. sp.), and eight former species are reevaluated, Karakoromys decessus, Tataromys sigmodon, T. minor, T. plicidens, Yindirtemys ulantatalensis, Y. bohlini, Y. deflexus, with several synonymies. A new Yindirtemys species is described: Y. shevyrevae nov. sp. and another one close to that: Y. aff. shevyrevae nov. sp. Four new species, which are rare in the localities, remain in open nomenclature because they are not well-represented. Yindirtemys differs from the other genera by the permanence of crescentic structures, while the other genera show a general reduction of the trigonoid area (= anterior valley). We define a range of size variation for each well documented population. Although the dental morphology shows a wide range of variation, given that transitional morphologies occur in a single locality, it is possible to provide a clear definition for most species. We show that dental patterns of the different genera can be derived from the pattern of Karakoromys. As a number of Tataromyinae have been determined in several localities from China, Kazakhstan and Mongolia, usually on the basis of scarce material, or surface collections, the present study would be used to re-evaluate their attribution inasmuch as the taxa are now placed in the Oligocene stratigraphy. The diversity of sizes and forms reflects the adaptive radiation of the family during the Oligocene, within a forested environment where the vegetation was probably abundant. 

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Published in Vol. 34, Fasc. 3-4 (2006)

Pairomys et Ectropomys : la fin d'une ambiguïté ; mise au point sur les Oltinomyinae et Remyinae (Rodenia, Theridomyidae).
Monique Vianey-Liaud, Norbert Schmidt-Kittler and Pablo Pelaez-Campomanes
Keywords: Phylogeny; Taxonomy; Theridomyidae; Upper Eocene

    The description of new material of the Upper Eoœne of France, Southem Germany and Spain together with the restudy of the material described by Thaler (1966b) as Pairomys allows to confirm the validity of the genus Ectropomys up to know controversally discussed. As a consequence the subfamily Remyinae and Oltinomyinae can be defined precisely. The study of the dental characters shows that the Remyinae in fact belong to the Theridomyidae and represent a derived evolutionary unit within this family. The Oltinomyinae together with the Theridomyinae and Issiodoromyinae very probably form a monophyletic unit. 

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Published in Vol. 23, Fasc. 1-4 (1994)

Agriotherium intermedium (Stach 1957) from a Pliocene fissure filling of Xiaoxian County (Anhuei Province, China) and the phylogenetic position of the genus.
Zhanxiang Qiu and Norbert Schmidt-Kittler
Keywords: Carnivora; China; Phylogeny; Pliocene; skull anatomy; Ursidae

    A fragmentary mandible and maxilla of a small sized Agriotherium of a young individual discovered from a Pliocene fissure filling in Xiaoxian county (Anhuei Province, China) are described. Judging from the morphology of the dentition and its dimensions the new material can be identified as Agriotherium inlermedium (STACH l957). Hendey's proposition (1980) that the Agriotherium species are derived from Indarctos is reconsídered on the basis of the new documents. As a result of a more general phylogenetic discussion it can be stated, that: 1. the supposed size increase as well as other trends, leading from Indarctos to Agriotherium are untenable ; 2. there are no positive indications to assume a phylogenetic transition of these two genera. 3. there are no real arguments in favor of an adaptational reversal in the evolution of Agriotherium. Hence, many features of that genus supposed by Hendey to be derived are plesiomorphic ; 4. regardless of the previous points it is methodologícally impossible to establish direct ancestor - descendant relationships between Indarctos and Agriotherium species, as Hendey did. Based on the data available and especially on the characters of the new material from China it is more likely that Agriotherium and Indarctos are two genera which developed independently. While advanced Agriotherium species, e.g. A. africanum, resemble in some respects Indarctos by adaptational analogies, more primitive species, e.g. Agriotherium intermedium, are quite dissimilar to lndarctos. While Indarctos might be derived from an Ursavus like forerunner, Agriotherium has its roots more likely somewhere in between Ursavus and the Hemicyon-group. 

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Published in Vol. 13, Fasc. 3 (1983)

Mammals and stratigraphy : the Paleocene of Europe
Donald E. Russell, Jean-Louis Hartenberger, Charles Pomerol, Sevket Sen, Norbert Schmidt-Kittler and Monique Vianey-Liaud
Keywords: Europe; Mammalia; Mammalian biochronology; Paleogene; Stratigraphy

    The mammalian faunas of the Paleogene of Europe and their localities are reviewed with comments on problems of European stratigraphy (epoch, stage and substage limits) and on the possibilities of faunal migrations. Radiometric dating is discussed. A stratigraphic scale for the Paleogene is presented, as well as a refined system of sequential faunal levels. 

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Published in Vol. 12, Ext (1982)

Evolution des Aplodontidae Oligocènes Européens
Norbert Schmidt-Kittler and Monique Vianey-Liaud
Keywords: Aplodontidae; Europe; Oligocene

    Until now Aplodontidae of the European Oligocene have been documented by four species only. The phylogenetic relations remained obscure. as the distribution of only one species has been known in some detail. New material made it possible to define the stratigraphic range of two of the already existing species (Plesispermophilus angustidens, Sciurodon cadurcense) and to follow their development during the Oligocene beginning with the event of the « Grande Coupure ››. Sciurodon remained nearly without change until the end of the Middle Oligocene. Plesispermophilus angustidens split into two distinct phyletic lines, one of which (P. macrodon n. sp.) reaching considerable size, is represented till the beginning of the Upper Oligocene (Pech de Fraysse, Gaimersheim). The other line leads to Plesispermophilus ernii (basal Upper Oligocene of Burgmagerbein 1. terminal Upper Oligocene of Coderet). Besides the already known forms a new small-sized species (P. atavus n. sp.) is described, which by its primitive features closely resembles the genus Plesispermophilus. Two other small-sized species already known from the Upper Oligocene (? P. argoviensis) and Lower Miocene (? P. descedens) seem to be closely related to the new species. It cannot be decided whether they are descendents of this line or have developed independently, because of their poor fossil record.
    Comparison of the evolutionary modalities in the different phylogenetic lines reveals general trends. the most striking of which is the complication of the tooth pattern by the development of additional crests. In the lower molars the cusps diminuate in size and are more and more transformed into ridges. ln addition new connection between the crests appear. in the upper molars, the « selenodont » shape of the teeth becomes more and more dominant, and in the two main evolutionary lines of Plesispermophilus the metaconulus becomes duplicated. A further evolutionary trend is the size increase of the premolars compared to the molars, which is even more pronounced in the Miocene Aplodontidae.
    Phylogenetic relations between the primitive Plesispermophilus and certain « prociurines ›› of Northern America as well as between Plesispermophilus (P. angustidens) and more progressive forms of the Upper Oligocene (P. ernii, P. macrodon n. sp.) can be documented. In this light, the taxonomic distinction between Prosciurinae (bunodont) and Allomyinae (selenodont) sensu Rensberger 1976 can be shown to be artificial, because it separates forms from each other, which are evidently closely related. Consequently the separation into two subfamilies has been abolished. 

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Published in Vol. 09, Fasc. 2 (1979)