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New discoveries of glirids and eomyids (Mammalia, Rodentia) in the Early Miocene of the Junggar basin (Northern Xinjiang province, China)

  • Olivier Maridet
  • Wen-Yu Wu
  • Jie Ye
  • Xi-Jun Ni
  • Jin Meng
Article

Abstract

We report herein new discoveries of Gliridae and Eomyidae (Mammalia, Rodentia) from the new Early Miocene locality XJ 200604, located northwest to the Burqin city, northern Xinjiang province, China. These specimens represent three taxa of Gliridae, including a new species (Miodyromys asiamediae nov. sp., Microdyromys aff. orientalis and Eliomys? sp.), and four taxa of Eomyidae (Asianeomys aff. engesseri, Asianeomys sp., Keramidomys sp. and Eomyidae indet). The identification of two forms that are closely related to Microdyromys orientalis and Asianeomys engesseri suggests an Early Miocene age of the locality but does not allow a more precise age determination. The new discoveries of Gliridae and Eomyidae again reveal the relative scarcity of the two families in the Early Miocene of Central Asia, in contrast to the coeval rich European record. Such a discrepancy in taxonomic diversity and abundance is hypothesized as resulting from different environmental evolutions during the Early Miocene, most notably the onset of a mid-latitude dry climate in Central Asia linked to combine effects of the Tibetan Plateau uplift and the retreat of the Paratethys Sea.

Keywords

Gliridae Eomyidae Early Neogene Central Asia Palaeoenvironment 

Notes

Acknowledgments

We want to thank W.-D. Zhang for taking the SEM pictures of specimens. We also thank J. Prieto et L. Costeur who contributed to this work through instructive discussions and comments on the manuscript. The first author’s research is supported by the Chinese National Natural Science Foundation (41050110135) and a Research Fellowship for International Young Researchers from the Chinese Academy of Sciences (2009Y2BZ3).

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Copyright information

© Akademie der Naturwissenschaften Schweiz (SCNAT) 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Olivier Maridet
    • 1
  • Wen-Yu Wu
    • 1
  • Jie Ye
    • 1
  • Xi-Jun Ni
    • 1
  • Jin Meng
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Evolutionary Systematics of Vertebrates, Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and PaleoanthropologyChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  2. 2.Division of PaleontologyAmerican Museum of Natural HistoryNew YorkUSA

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