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The upper Miocene mammal record from the Teruel-Alfambra region (Spain). The MN system and continental stage/age concepts discussed

AuthorsVan Dam, J. A.; Alcalá, Luis; Alonso-Zarza, Ana María CSIC ORCID ; Calvo Sorando, J. P.; Garcés, Miguel; Krijgsman, W.
Issue Date2001
PublisherTaylor & Francis
CitationJournal of Vertebrate Paleontology 21(2): 367-385 (2001)
AbstractAn extended and revised mammal succession of 99 fossil localities from the Upper Miocene sediments of the Teruel-Alfambra region (NE Spain) is presented. An updated biozonation is proposed. The biostratigraphic justification for the correlation of the magnetic polarity patterns of the La Gloria, El Bunker, Masada Ruea, Masada del Valle and Masía de la Roma sections to the Geomagnetic Polarity Time Scale (GPTS) is discussed. A comparison with Late Miocene faunas from elsewhere in Europe demonstrates that faunal resemblance across the continent is very low. As illustrated by an analysis of the “Progonomys event,” local appearances of genera may be strongly diachronous and even species should not a priori be assumed to be isochronous at resolutions higher than several hundred thousands of years. These observations have implications for European continental stratigraphy and chronology: (1) The usefulness of the European mammal-based Stages/Ages can be doubted because their biostratigraphic significance is mainly local, and because more and more direct calibrations of mammal faunas to the numerical time scale are becoming established; (2) The European Mammal Neogene (MN) system, currently defined as a series of 16 time-ordered faunas, should not be divided into sub-units, because this weakens its power for cross-continental faunal correlation. In addition, the use of MN “boundaries” is erroneous and misleading, both from a philosophic and technical point of view.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1671/0272-4634(2001)021[0367:TUMMRF]2.0.CO;2
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