Systematics and dental microwear of the late Miocene Gliridae (Rodentia, Mammalia) from Hayranli, Anatolia: implications for paleoecology and paleobiodiversity


PALAEONTOLOGIA ELECTRONICA, cilt.16, 2013 (SCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi)

  • Cilt numarası: 16 Konu: 3
  • Basım Tarihi: 2013


New finds of Gliridae (Mammalia, Rodentia) from the late Miocene of Hayranli, located in central eastern Anatolia, are described. These specimens include Microdyromys koenigswaldi De Bruijn, 1966, and Myomimus maritsensis De Bruijn et al., 1970. The morphological overlap between Myomimus and Peridyromys makes it difficult to distinguish between the two genera. The last appearance of Microdyromys was previously recorded in Ampudia 3 (MN 10, Duero Basin, Spain), but the Hayranli collection from the middle Turolian extends its spatiotemporal occurence. Dental microwear analysis indicates that these species of dormice had a diet that involved a combination of insects, fruit, seeds, and grasses, which could point to the development of a more generalist behavior adapted to the seasonal availability of foods. Environmental changes, occurring from the middle Miocene to the late Miocene in Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean, caused a drastic decrease in the number of species of Gliridae adapted to an arboreal lifestyle and a warm and humid climate. There is a significant faunal exchange from forest dwellers to ground dwelling species, which is characterized by the increase in Myomimus finds from a number of localities during the late Miocene probably attributable to the vegetational shift from predominating forested wetland environments to open woodland and steppe-like environments. Considering the large herbivore-omnivore mammal collection of Hayranli the mean hypsodonty value (=1.6) depicts a relatively humid woodland and shrubby paleoenvironment.