Journal of Mammalian Evolution

, Volume 22, Issue 3, pp 343–354 | Cite as

A New Early Eocene (Ypresian) Bat from Pourcy, Paris Basin, France, with Comments on Patterns of Diversity in the Earliest Chiropterans

  • Suzanne J. Hand
  • Bernard Sigé
  • Michael Archer
  • Gregg F. Gunnell
  • Nancy B. Simmons
Original Paper


A new early Eocene bat species is described from the Paris Basin locality of Pourcy (Marne), which is thought to represent either MP7 (early Ypresian; earliest Eocene) or MP8 + 9 (middle Ypresian; later early Eocene) in the European Paleogene mammal chronostratigraphic scale. It is the first bat described from the Pourcy locality, and one of the world’s oldest chiropterans. The new bat shares a number of archaic dental features found in other early bats, but also exhibits several traits that appear derived and suggest referral to the family Onychonycteridae. Onychonycterids are restricted to the Ypresian of France, Belgium, England, and the USA, and include the most skeletally primitive of bats. Onychonycterids lived alongside bats that exhibit adaptations for more advanced flight capabilities but which had dentitions that were somewhat more similar to those of ancestral placental mammals. The new bat species from Pourcy, together with other Ypresian chiropterans, illustrates the mosaic nature of bat evolution in the early Eocene.


Chiroptera Onychonycteridae Early Eocene Pourcy Paris Basin France 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Suzanne J. Hand
    • 1
  • Bernard Sigé
    • 2
  • Michael Archer
    • 1
  • Gregg F. Gunnell
    • 3
  • Nancy B. Simmons
    • 4
  1. 1.School of Biological, Earth and Environmental SciencesUNSW AustraliaSydneyAustralia
  2. 2.Institut des Sciences de l’Évolution, UMR-CNRS 5554Université Montpellier 2Montpellier cedex 05France
  3. 3.Division of Fossil PrimatesDuke University Lemur CenterDurhamUSA
  4. 4.Department of Mammalogy, Division of Vertebrate ZoologyAmerican Museum of Natural HistoryNew YorkUSA

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