Science China Earth Sciences

, Volume 53, Issue 8, pp 1134–1140 | Cite as

First discovery of fossil Nesolagus (Leporidae, Lagomorpha) from Southeast Asia

  • ChangZhu JinEmail author
  • Yukimitsu Tomida
  • Yuan Wang
  • YingQi Zhang
Research Paper


A new leporid species, Nesolagus sinensis sp. nov., is described here representing the only leporid member of the Early Pleistocene Gigantopithecus fauna from Sanhe Cave, Chongzuo, Guangxi, South China and also the first fossil taxon of the Southeast Asian genus Nesolagus. Compared with two extant Nesolagus species from Indonesia and Vietnam and other related leprids, the new species has a relatively small size and an extraordinarily weak anterior internal reentrant (AIR) on p3, but it also retains the simplified paedomorphic pattern during the ontogenetic process as in extant species, which suggests that the new species is more primitive than and probably directly ancestral to extant Nesolagus species. The new species seems closely related to Alilepus longisinuosus from the Late Miocene strata of Lufeng, Yunnan, and probably diverged from a leporid similar to its ancestral form. It also indicates that Nesolagus originated in Southwest China.


Guangxi of China Early Pleistocene Nesolagus sinensis sp. nov. Gigantopithecus fauna 


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Copyright information

© Science China Press and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • ChangZhu Jin
    • 1
    Email author
  • Yukimitsu Tomida
    • 2
  • Yuan Wang
    • 1
    • 3
  • YingQi Zhang
    • 1
  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Evolutionary Systematics of Vertebrates, Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and PaleoanthropologyChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  2. 2.National Museum of Nature and ScienceShinjuku, TokyoJapan
  3. 3.Graduate University of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina

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