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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
 
  Abstract

    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. 


  Article infos

Published in Vol.38-1 (2014)

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Les rongeurs de l'Eocène d'Afrique Nord-Occidentale [Glib Zegdou ( Algérie) et Chambi (Tunisie)] et l'origine des anomaluridae.
Monique Vianey-Liaud, Jean-Jacques Jaeger, Jean-Louis Hartenberger and Mahammed Mahboubi
Keywords: Africa; Eocene; New taxa; Paleobiogeography; Phylogeny; Rodents
 
  Abstract

    This paper is about the oldest African rodents faunas, from the late Early Eocene, or early Middle Eocene, Glib Zegdou (Algeria) and Chambi (Tunisia) localities. Five species are described and figured, belonging to a new family here created, the Zegdoumyidae.

    This family is compared to the Early and Middle Eocene rodents families from Asia, Europe and North America (Chapattimyidae, Yuomyidae, Gliridae, Theridomyidae, lschyromyidae and Sciuravidae), as well as to those known from the Late Eocene African locality Bir El Ater (Anomaluridae and Phiomyidae).

    On the one hand, it seems clear that the African endemic Anomaluridae arise from the Zegdoumyidae. On the other hand, the lschyromyidae, or primitive Sciuravidae, may be the most reliable ancestral groups for the Zegdoumyidae. Thus, this new family can be considered as the sister group for the American Sciuravidae on the one hand, and for the European Gliridae on the other hand.

    The biogeographical consequences of these phylogenetic hypotheses are discussed. A new phase of communication between Europe and North Africa is inferred, during the Early Eocene. It has been followed by a short period of endemism, allowing the adaptive radiation for the Zegdoumyidae, preceding the immigration of the Phiomyidae, during the Late Eocene, probably from Asian relatives. 


  Article infos

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

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Schmelzmikrostruktur in den inzisiven alt-und neuweltlicher histricognather nagetiere
Thomas Martin
Keywords: Africa; Caviomorpha; Ctenodactyloidea; Deseadan; Enamel microstructure; Hunter-Schreger bands; Hystricognathi; Incisors; Ischyromyoidea; multiserial; Paleobiogeography; pauciserial; Phiomorpha; Rodentia; South America
 
  Abstract

    Enamel microstructure in the incisors of Old- and New World hystricognath rodents:

    The incisor enamel microstructure in more than 100 genera of fossil and Recent hystricognath and sciurognath rodents was studied. A multiserial schmelzmuster is present in the Hystricognathi, the Ctenodactylidae, advanced Chapattimyidae, and in Pedetes. A redefinition of pauciserial and multiserial HSB is given that makes the two enamel types unambiguously distinguishable which apparently represent well defined evolutionary levels. In the pauciserial Schmelzmuster the IPM is thicker than in the multiserial one. In pauciserial HSB the IPM always surrounds each prism, and the crystallites of the IPM run parallel to prism direction; transition zones between HSB are lacking; the inclination of the HSB is normally very low and the prism cross sections are not flattened but somewhat irregular. The number of prisms per HSB is no good distinctive character for pauciserial and multiserial HSB, since there exists a wide overlap. The pauciserial schmelzmuster is primitive, the multiseiial derived because: 1. the pauciseiial schmelzmuster appears earlier in the fossil record in the most primitive rodents (Paramyids s.l. and Ctenodactyloids); 2. the Eocene Ctenodactyloidea show pauciserial HSB but the Oligocene and younger ones are characterized by multiserial HSB; 3. in the outgroup comparison, the Eurymylidae (Mixodontia) show pauciserial HSB; 4. biomechanically, multiserial HSB strenghten the enamel better than pauciserial HSB, since their IPM runs nearly always in an angle of 45° or more to the prisms.

    In multiseríal HSB three subtypes can be distinguished which are differentiated by the IPM orientation. Primitive is a (rarely strict) parallel or acute angular, anastomozing IPM, and derived is an interrow sheet-like ("plattenartige") IPM. This evolutionary polarity is indicated by enamel evolution in the Ctenodactylidae which show an acute angular IPM in the Oligocene and a rectangular interrow sheet-like IPM since the Miocene. Among the Caviomorpha a rectangular interrow sheet-like IPM is restricted to the Octodontoidea; therefore they must be considered derived in terms of their enamel structure. The first multiserial HSB in rodent incisors appear in phiomyids or chapatrimyids from the Upper Eocene of Algeria. The IPM is acute angular and anastomozing. The worldwide next younger multiserial HSB are found in Lower Oligocene phiomyids of Fayum, Egypt There already a rectangular interrow sheet like IPM is present (in Metaphiomys) besides the acute angular anastomozing IPM.

    The first Caviomorpha from the Deseadan (Oligocene-Miocene) likewise show already acute angular anastomozing IPM (e.g. Scozamys) and rectangular interrow sheet-like IPM (Platypittamys). Therefore the first Caviomorpha cannot be positioned close to a transition from pauciserial to multiserial HSB. In none of the potential caviomorph ancestors from southern North America multiserial HSB or transitional stage between pauciserial and multiserial HSB could be found. The similarities between the enamel types of the Fayum rodents and the rodents from the Deseadan of South America make a derivation of the Caviomorpha from Paleogene North African phiomorph rodents or their direct ancestors most probable. This supports at the same time a descent of the platyrrhine Primates from North African anthropoids.
      


  Article infos

Published in Vol. 21, Ext (1992)

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Mammifères de l'Ilerdien Moyen (Eocène inférieur) des Corbières et du Minervois (Bas-Languedoc, France). Systématique, Biostratigraphie, Corrélations.
Bernard Marandat
Keywords: Biostratigraphy; Corbières; correlations; Early Eocene; Ilerdian; Mammalia; Minervois; Paleobiogeography; Southern France
 
  Abstract

    Mammal-bearing localities have been discovered in the marine and lacustrine series of the middle Ilerdian (Lowermost Eocene) from Southem France (Minervois and Corbières). In the localities of Fordones, Monze, Fournès, and La Gasque, thirty mammal species have been identified. Among others, they include ischyromyid rodents (Microparamys and Pseudoparamys), paromomyid and adapid primates (Arcius and Donrussellia), new insectivores, condylarths, and a dyspternine pantolestid. These faunas provide new informations on the early Eocene Mesogean faunas of Rians and Palette. The assemblages of primates and rodents from Fordones support good  correlations with Palette which was recently placed near the standard-level of Dormaal (MP 7). In fact, Palette and Fordones could be even older than Dormaal. Consequently, there seems to be a relatively important temporal gap between the late Paleocene of Cernay and the Sparnacian of Dormaal. This gap could be partly filled with the Mesogean faunas of Palette, Fordones, and Silveirinha. On the basis of these new mammal faunas the marine middle Ilerdian is proved to be older than the Cuisian stage of the Paris Basin. With regards to the position of the Fordones fauna at the top of the NP 10 calcareous nannoplankton biozone, the westem European paleomammalogists Paleocene/Eocene boundary could be situated between the NP 9 and NP 10 biozones. 


  Article infos

Published in Vol. 20, Fasc. 2-3 (1991)

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Crivadiatherium iliescui n. sp., nouvel Embrithopode (Mammalia) dans le Paléogène ancien de la dépression de Hateg (Roumanie).
Constin Radulesco and Jean Sudre
Keywords: Embrithopods; Late Eocene; Paleobiogeography; Romania
 
  Abstract

    The investigations undertaken at Crivadia (Hateg Depression, Hunedoara District, Romania), the type locality of Crivadiatherium mackennai RADULESCO el al. (Radulesco, Iliesco et lliesco, 1976), led to the discovery of remains of a new Embrithopod. Close to the above mentioned species, but larger in size, this animal is here described as a new species of Crivadiatherium, C. iliescui. ln addition, the comparison made between the forms indicated above and Palaeaamasía kansui OZANSOY from the Eocene deposits of Anatolia (Ozansoy, 1966; Sen et Heintz, 1979) showed that the latter species included a heterogeneous material; this permitted us to distinguish the form in the Anatolian locality Ciçekdag-Arabin Kôyü under the name Palaeoamasia sp. The geographical distribution and diversity of the Embrithopod species under discussion (Balkan, Anatolia) support the idea of an eurasiatic origin of this group and seem to suggest the existence during the Eocene of a particular faunal province in south-eastern Europe. 


  Article infos

Published in Vol. 15, Fasc. 3 (1985)

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Cryptomerix Schlosser, 1886, Tragulidé de l'oligocène d'Europe ; relations du genre et considérations sur l'origine des ruminants.
Jean Sudre
Keywords: Archaic Ruminants; Paleobiogeography; Quercy phosphorites; systematics; Tragulids
 
  Abstract

    The genus Cryptomeryx SCHLOSSER, 1886, inusited during a long period, has been discovered in Lower and Middle Oligocene localities of the Quercy region (South-West France). This new material, as well as specimens from the old collections referred to Cryptomeryx, are described; their study, allows us precising the definition of the genus, and confirming its allocation to the Tragulidae family. The type species of the genus, Crypmmeryx gaudryi (= Lophiomeryx gaudryi FILHOL, 1877), occurs in several localities at the base of the Middle Oligocene (Itardies, La Plante 2, Roqueprune 2, Soulce, Herrlingen 1). The new species C. matsoui n. sp. has been defined in the older locality of Mas de Got (top of Lower Oligocene). It is possible that the species Pseudamphimeryx decedens STEHLIN, 1910 pertains to the same genus. Also to the Tragulids must be referred the monospecific genus Iberomeryx (I. parvus GABOUNIA, 1964) from Upper Oligocene of Benara (Georgie, URSS), with which Cryptomeryx is related. These genera are not direct ancestors of Miocene tragulids; their occurrence in the Western European Oligocene results from a first immigration wawe of the family. These Tragulids are one of the most archaic groups of Ruminants. They are probably derived from a primitive stock which had acquired in Asia the selenodont condition of the dentition. 


  Article infos

Published in Vol. 14, Fasc. 1 (1984)

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Perutherium altiplanense, un Notongulé du Cretacé Supérieur du Pérou
Larry G. Marshall, Christian de Muizon and Bernard Sigé
Keywords: dental morphology; Late Cretaceous; Notoungulate; Paleobiogeography; Peru
 
  Abstract

    Perutherium altiplanerise THALER, 1967 from the Late Cretaceous of Peru has long been recognized as South America's oldest known placental mammal. Since its description Perutherium has been generally regarded as having condylarth affinity Based on our identification  of a unique notoungulate synapomorphy we recognize Perutherium as the oldest and the most generalized known member of that order. This new determination and the large taxonomic diversity (five families) of notoungulates in rocks of Paleocene age in Argentina and Brazil, favor a South American origin for this group. The occurrence of notoungulates in rocks of Late Paleocene age in Asia and North America is explained by dispersal of a notoungulate stock from South America to North America and from there to Asia. 


  Article infos

Published in Vol. 13, Fasc. 4 (1983)

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Les mammifères Montiens de Hainin (Paléocène moyen de Belgique) Part III : Marsupiaux
Jean-Yves Crochet and Bernard Sigé
Keywords: Belgium; Marsupials; Paleobiogeography; Paleocene
 
  Abstract

    The oldest european marsupials are described from some specimens (isolated upper molars) recently found from the Hainin sediment (Middle Paleocene of Belgium). These fossils document a new species of the Peradectes genus. They give evidence of a much older occurrence of the marsupials in Europe than it was assumed. They allow us to postulate a didelphid dispersal from South America towards the western-holarctic area operating in two phases : the first one of the Peradectes genus at the end of the Cretaceous; the second one of the Didelphíni tribe at the end of the Paleocene. A central american crossing is likely for the first one,  whereas a transafrican way is tentatively argued for the second one. 


  Article infos

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

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Rongeurs Caviomorphes de l'Oligocène de Bolivie. 2 Rongeurs du Bassin Deseadien de Salla-Luribat.
René Lavocat
Keywords: cranium; Paleobiogeography; Rodentia
 
  Abstract

    The fauna studied in the following work involves the dentitions and skulls more or less complete of 5 genera, among which only Cephalomys was previously known by its skull. One must notice that the Salla's species of this genus is a new one. Sallamys, rather small, shows a dentition rather similar to that of Platypittamys Wood from Patagonia. The upper molars, more primitive than those of this last genus, according to the smaller dimensions of the hypocone, retain a distinct metaloph. This metaloph tends to be reduced in a way which may give us a possibility to understand how it disappeared in Platypittamys. The upper P4 can be compared as well to that of Platypittamys as to that of Gaudeamus from the African Oligocene. The lower P4, more molarized than that of Platypittamys, is already moving towards the miocene type of structure. The infraorbital foramen is wide and the insertion of the masseter on the muzzle is spacious. Branisamys, genus of a great size, shows an auditory region partly preserved, peculiarly the promontorium with the fenestra rotunda, entirely of the Hystricognathi type. Upper molars are very clearly pentalophodont. A new reconstruction is proposed for the tooth called Villarroelomys by Hartenberger. This tooth is shown to be a lower D4, perhaps of Branisamys , certainly of a rather nearly allied form, and Hartenberger does agree with the essential part of this new conclusion. Of Incamys, two incomplete skulls are known, each one being admitted to be the type of a distinct species, the first one being I. bolivianus, I. pretiosus the second. The infraorbital foramen is of a great size and the impression of the masseter on the muzzle is spacious. The sphenopalatine foramen is widely developed and of a really very uncommon great size. Only Thryonomys from Africa shows a similar tendency to the enlargement of this foramen, but not so extreme. The main basicranial foramina can be observed. The upper teeth, hemi-hypsodont, show, either a vestigial metaloph, similar to that of recent Thryonomys from Africa, associated with a well developed mesoloph, either a well developed metaloph, while the mesoloph is reduced or absent. Cephalomys was previously known by anterior parts of the skull showing a wide infraorbital foramen and a spacious facial insertion of the masseter. Its lacrymal is of the phiomorph type and the spheno-palatine foramen is seemingly of great size, like in Incamys. The species is new. The varied peculiarities of the upper teeth of these genera can be easily understood if we refer to the plan of the teeth of Phiomys andrewsi from the Oligocene and Miocene of Africa. The structure of this genus, clearly more primitive, still typically brachyodont, shows and clearly explains the fundamental coherence of the varied realisations arised from such a structure. Luribayomys n.g. is known only by an anterior half of a skull without teeth. It is remarquable by the great development of the masseter's insertions on the muzzle and by the lacrymal region, well preserved, typically phiomorphid. The classification previously published by A.E. Wood and B. Patterson is granted in its essential parts, provisionally, but not as a definitive solution. Nevertheless the Dasyproctidae are integrated within the Cavioidea, following the conclusions of Bugge and of Vucetich, reached independently. The conclusion emphasizes the exceptional meaning of the fauna of Salla-Luribay. This shows that Platypittamys, while interesting, can no more be supposed certainly representative of the normal structure of the Oligocene Caviomorph, and not even of their ancestors. The anatomical peculiarities exhibited in these new samples, auditory region, lacrymal, spheno-palatine foramen, reinforce the primitive structural identity with the Phiomorpha. Similarly, the new lower D4 favour very close relationships, ever if the affinities of the D4 has been questioned or minimized by Wood and Patterson. It is certainly possible to admit that parallelism could explain limited similarities, like the presence in North America of Rodents with an hystricomorph type of infraorbital foramen and an hystricognath mandible. But if the parallelism could be a sufficient explanation of the identical association of multiple and complete structures observed in the Caviomorpha and Phiomorpha, all the Zoological systematic would have to be questioned. The last positions of A.E. Wood on the subject (1975) are revised and criticised, and the recent publications studying the problems of distance between Africa and South America in Eocene time, as a consequence of the drift, are quoted; the possibility of transportation by rafts is shown. A new hypothesis is proposed about the interrelationships of Pentalophodont Rodents, with interesting paleobiogeographic implications. 


  Article infos

Published in Vol. 07, Fasc. 3 (1976)

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