Acta Palaeontologica Polonica

Moles (Talpidae) from the late Middle Miocene of South Germany

Reinhard Ziegler

Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 48 (4), 2003: 617-648

The moles from the South German fissure fillings Petersbuch 6, 10, 18, 31, 35, 48 include 14 species, four of which are new: Leptoscaptor bavaricum gen. et sp. nov., Leptoscaptor robustior gen. et sp. nov., Myxomygale gracilis sp. nov., and Tenuibrachiatum storchi gen. et sp. nov. Most samples are characterised by their high species diversity. Talpa minuta is the most common species in nearly all samples. Leptoscaptor is characterised by a slender humerus and by the loss of lower antemolars. It is interpreted as a Miocene offshoot of the Scalopini. Myxomygale gracilis represents the latest record of the genus. Tenuibrachiatum storchi has a slender humerus and one lower incisor is lost. The species is structurally ancestral to the extant Urotrichus. The genus Pseudoparatalpa Lopatin, 1999 is considered a synonym of Paratalpa. The talpids of the Petersbuch fissures are in line with a Middle Miocene correlation of MN 7+8 as already indicated by the cricetids. The remains of desmans in the Petersbuch 6 fissure filling indicate the proximity of water. The presence of Urotrichini in nearly all samples, albeit scanty, suggests a forestal environment within the range of the owls, which preyed on them.

Key words: Mammalia, Talpidae, moles, Miocene, Germany, Petersbuch.

Reinhard Ziegler [r.ziegler.smns@naturkundemuseum−], Staatliches Museum für Naturkunde Stuttgart, Rosenstein 1, D−70191 Stuttgart, Germany.

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