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Samotherium Major, 1888 (Giraffidae) skulls from the late Miocene Maragheh fauna (Iran) and the validity of Alcicephalus Rodler & Weithofer, 1890

Elnaz PARIZAD, Majid MIRZAIE ATAABADI, Marjan MASHKOUR & Dimitris S. KOSTOPOULOS

en Comptes Rendus Palevol 19 (9) - Pages 153-172

Published on 01 December 2020

Samotherium Major, 1888 (Giraffidae) is recorded from several late Miocene localities, primarily in the Balkans, the northern Black Sea region, Anatolia, central Asia and China. The first complete cranial material, with several mandibular rami, and postcranials of Samotherium are described here from the Middle Maragheh sequence in northwest Iran. The Maragheh taxon appears metrically and morphologically similar to the smaller Samotherium taxon from the Samos Island (Greece) referred to as S. boissieri Major, 1888, type species of the genus. These new data trigger further discussion about the Iranian Samotherium record, including Alcicephalus Rodler & Weithofer, 1890, which was recently resurrected as a valid genus in the Maragheh fauna. Our analysis of the material referred to this genus indicates that Samotherium is the most likely attribution for the Maragheh A. neumayri Rodler & Weithofer, 1890. Differences between S. boissieri and S. neumayri are more pronounced in postcranial elements than in cranial and dental ones and need further investigation.


Keywords :

Samotherium, Alcicephalus, Paleotraginae, Turolian, Maragheh

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