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Quaternary 2018, 1(2), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/quat1020017

A Description of Two New Species of the Genus Rucervus (Cervidae, Mammalia) from the Early Pleistocene of Southeast Europe, with Comments on Hominin and South Asian Ruminants Dispersals

1
Aix-Marseille Université–CNRS, Ministry of Culture, LAMPEA, 5 rue du Château de l’horloge, 13094 Aix-en-Provence, France
2
Institute of Zoology, Academy of Sciences of Moldova, Academiei str. 1, MD-2028 Chișinău, Moldova
Academic Editors: Gavin Prideaux and Maria Rita Palombo
Received: 30 May 2018 / Revised: 28 August 2018 / Accepted: 3 September 2018 / Published: 11 September 2018
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Abstract

The article attests the presence of the genus Rucervus in the paleontological record of Europe and presents the description of new species of large-sized deer Rucervus radulescui sp. nov. from the Early Pleistocene of Valea Grăunceanului (Southern Romania) and Rucervus gigans sp. nov. from the late Early Pleistocene of Apollonia-1 (Greece). The described cervid species represent two different evolutionary radiations of Rucervus that are grouped into the extinct subgenus Arvernoceros that represents the northern evolutionary radiation and the nominotypical subgenus that is regarded as the southern evolutionary radiation and represented today by only one species Rucervus duvaucelii. The evolutionary radiation and dispersals of Rucervus are regarded in the paleobiogeographic context of faunal exchanges between southeastern Europe, Caucasus, and Near East during the Early Pleistocene and the westward dispersal of early hominins in Eurasia. View Full-Text
Keywords: Villafranchian; deer; Rucervus; Arvernoceros; taxonomy; systematics; morphology; phylogeny; paleobiogeography Villafranchian; deer; Rucervus; Arvernoceros; taxonomy; systematics; morphology; phylogeny; paleobiogeography
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Croitor, R. A Description of Two New Species of the Genus Rucervus (Cervidae, Mammalia) from the Early Pleistocene of Southeast Europe, with Comments on Hominin and South Asian Ruminants Dispersals. Quaternary 2018, 1, 17.

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