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The small mammals from Gratkorn: an overview

AuthorsPrieto, Jérôme; Angelone, Chiara; Casanovas-Vilar, Isaac; Gross, Martin; Hír, Janós; Hoek Ostende, L. van den; Maul, Christian Maul; Vasilyan, Davit
Sarmatian s. str
Issue Date26-Feb-2014
CitationPalaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments 94(1): 135-162 (2014)
AbstractThe rich and diverse fossil mammalian assemblage from Gratkorn (Middle Miocene, Austria) is of primary importance for the understanding of the faunal evolution in Central Europe. Besides large mammals, the fauna comprises: Schizogalerix voesendorfensis, Galericinae gen. et sp. indet., Desmanodon fluegeli, Dinosorex sp., cf. Myotis sp., “Cricetodon” fandli, Megacricetodon minutus, Eumyarion sp., Spermophilinus bredai, Blackia sp., Forsythia gaudryi, Albanensia albanensis, Muscardinus aff. sansaniensis, Miodyromys sp., Keramidomys sp., Euroxenomys minutus minutus, Prolagus oeningensis, cf. Eurolagus fontannesi and Ochotonidae indet. Based on the degree of corrosion on the dental elements and the presence of pellets, most, but not all, of the material is tentatively interpreted as a result of accumulation by nocturnal raptors. In addition to the information provided by the lower vertebrates and the molluscs, which occur in abundance in the same thin fossil-enriched layer, the mammal fauna gives a mixed picture of the environment (basically forested vs. open landscape). This could indicate the presence of different microhabitats around the excavation place, but may also be a taphonomical artefact based on various different agents of accumulation contributing to the thanatocoenosis. Nevertheless, the extreme quick accumulation of the fossils provides an exceptional windows in the late Sarmatian s. str. ecosystems.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12549-013-0147-3
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