New Late Miocene Alilepus (Lagomorpha, Mammalia) from Eastern Europe - a new light on the evolution of the earliest Old World Leporinae

 

Authors: Čermák S, Angelone C, Sinitsa MV

Published in: Bulletin of Geosciences, volume 90, issue 2; pages: 431 - 451; Received 10 June 2014; Accepted in revised form 6 November 2014; Online 9 March 2015

Keywords: Alilepus, taxonomy, phylogeny, Late Miocene, Pliocene, Eastern Europe,

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Abstract

The leporid material from eight Late Miocene (MN11-13) localities of Ukraine and Moldova is described. The analysis is supported by a direct revision of type materials of A. laskarewi, A. hungaricus and A. ucrainicus. Lectotypes of A. annectens (type species of Alilepus), A. laskarewi and A. hungaricus are designated here. The new material from Egorovka 2 (MN12) allowed a detailed morphometric re-description and emended diagnosis of A. laskarewi, one of the least understood species of the Old World Alilepus. One of the peculiarities of A. laskarewi is the very high incidence of mesofossettid in p3. The oldest leporids of the study area are verified for the MN11 localities Palievo, UA and Keinar, MD, but the taxonomy for these very scanty records remains unclear. In the light of the new material presented here, (i) a synoptic survey and discussion on the presence of p3 mesofossettid and (ii) hypotheses on a possible evolution and dispersal among the Old and New World Leporinae are provided.

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