Paläontologische Zeitschrift

, Volume 89, Issue 4, pp 1023–1038 | Cite as

Two new species of Prolagus (Lagomorpha, Mammalia) from the Late Miocene of Hungary: taxonomy, biochronology, and palaeobiogeography

  • Chiara Angelone
  • Stanislav Čermák
Research Paper


The present study describes two new species, Prolagus pannonicus sp. nov. and P. latiuncinatus sp. nov., from the Late Miocene Hungarian localities Sümeg (MN10/11) and Polgárdi 2 (MN13). These species are closely related, probably by a direct ancestor–descendant relationship. They share characters common to Late Miocene–Pliocene eastern European species (e.g., the retention of the entoconid enamel in p3 contrarily to coeval western European ones), attesting to an eastern European group of Prolagus that evolved independently from western European species at least since MN10/11. Nevertheless, the two Hungarian species of Prolagus here described follow particular evolutionary trends: contrarily to other European Late Miocene species, their p3 does not undergo a substantial size increase after MN12, whereas the crochet size enlarges noticeably. Special emphasis is given to the comparison of P. pannonicus sp. nov. and P. latiuncinatus sp. nov. with the Gargano insular endemic Prolagus species. Their common morphological traits are related to convergence due to endemism. Prolagus pannonicus sp. nov. and P. latiuncinatus sp. nov. probably were continental isolated species.


Prolagus pannonicus sp. nov P. latiuncinatus sp. nov Hungary Late Miocene Evolutionary trends Isolated species 



Partial width


Collezione Fondi, Università di Siena


Upper/lower deciduous teeth


Institut Català de Paleontologia, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona




Upper/lower molar


Magyar Földtani és Geofizikai Intézet [Hungarian Institute of Geology and Geophysics]


Colección Sesé, Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales de Madrid


Number of specimens


Natural History Museum in Basel


Natural History Museum (Geology and Palaeontology Section), University of Florence


Naturhistorisches Museum Wien


Upper/lower premolar


Hypoflexus width


Senckenberg Museum, Frankfurt


Distal hyperloph length


Dipartimento di Scienze della Terra, Università di Firenze




Institute of Palaeobiology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Warszawa


Die vorliegende Studie beschreibt zwei neue Arten: Prolagus pannonicus sp. nov. und P. latiuncinatus sp. nov. aus den spätmiozänen ungarischen Lokalitäten Sümeg (MN10/11) und Polgárdi 2 (MN13). Diese Arten sind eng verwandt, wahrscheinlich über eine direkte Vorfahren-Nachkommen-Beziehung. Sie teilen Merkmale, die spätmiozän-pliozänen osteuropäischen Arten gemein sind (z. B. den Erhalt des Entoconid-Schmelzes an p3 im Gegensatz zu zeitgenössischen westeuropäischen Arten), und bezeugen so eine osteuropäische Abstammungslinie, die bereits seit MN10/11 von den westeuropäischen getrennt verläuft. Allerdings folgen die beiden hier beschriebenen ungarischen Arten des Prolagus besonderen Evolutionstrends: Im Gegensatz zu anderen spätmiozänen europäischen Arten vergrößert sich ihr p3 nach MN12 nicht substantiell; es zeigt sich hingegen eine bemerkenswerte Vergrößerung des Crochet. Besonderes Gewicht wird auf den Vergleich von P. pannonicus sp. nov. und P. latiuncinatus sp. nov. mit dem insular-endemischen Prolagus aus dem Gargano gelegt. Ihre gemeinsamen morphologischen Merkmale hängen mit Konvergenz aufgrund von Endemismus zusammen. Wahrscheinlich waren Prolagus pannonicus sp. nov. und P. latiuncinatus sp. nov. kontinental isolierte Arten.


Prolagus pannonicus sp. nov. P. latiuncinatus sp. nov. Ungarn Spätmiozän Evolutionstrends Isolierte Arten 



We are indebted to E. Bodor (MFGI), L. Costeur and B. Engesser (NHMB), and L. Kordos (MFGI) for kindly allowing access to the collections under their care. L. Kordos also provided precious information about the historical/biochronological background of the analyzed fossiliferous sites, and E. Bodor gave her invaluable help with papers in Hungarian. We are also grateful to M. Gasparik (Hungarian Museum of Natural History, Budapest) and P. Mazza (UFST) who provided useful bibliographical material; to I. Horáček (Charles University, Prague) and the referees J. Prieto (Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Munich) and M. Sabol (Comenius University, Bratislava) for their valuable suggestions; to Melanie Kunkel (Università “Sapienza” di Roma) for kindly translating the abstract in German language. This work was funded by the Spanish Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad (CGL2011–28681) and by the RVO67985831 of the Institute of Geology AS CR, v.v.i., C.A. received support from the SYNTHESYS Project (, financed by European Community Research Infrastructure Action under the FP6 ‘Structuring the European Research Area’ (Project: HU–TAF–3145).


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© Paläontologische Gesellschaft 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Grup de Recerca de Faunes del Neogen i QuaternariInstitut Català de Paleontologia Miquel Crusafont, Universitat Autònoma de BarcelonaCerdanyola del Vallès, BarcelonaSpain
  2. 2.Department of Palaeobiology and PalaeoecologyInstitute of Geology AS CR, v. v. i.Prague 6-LysolajeCzech Republic

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