The localities of Strumyani in the Struma valley (South-Western Bulgaria) yield a rich assemblage of large mammals, including more than 20 species, hipparions and rhinos being especially well represented. Many species are commonly found in the Balkano-Iranian province, but there are also some rarely found taxa, such as Tapirus Brünnich, 1771, Dorcatherium Kaup, 1833, and a cervid that looks different from other contemporaneous finds. The instantaneous nature of the deposition shows that the association of taxa with likely diverse ecological requirements reflects a truly mosaic environment. The close similarity of the faunal association with that of Pikermi implies a similar middle Turolian age, although some differences suggest that Strumyani is earlier than this Greek locality. The issue of the age of Turolian sites of the Balkans is discussed.
Bulgaria, Miocene, mammalian fauna, paleoenvironments