A new shark fauna is described from the lower-middle Pleistocene marine sediments outcropping near the Fiumefreddo village, Southern Italy. The fossil assemblage mostly consists of teeth belonging to the bathydemersal and bathypelagic elasmobranch species Chlamydoselachus anguineus, Apristurus sp., Galeus cf. melastomus, Etmopterus sp., Centroscymnus cf. crepidater, Scymnodon cf. ringens, Centrophorus cf. granulosus and C. cf. squamosus, commonly recorded along the extant outer continental shelf and upper slope. From a bathymetrical point of view, the present vertical distribution of the taxa collected allows an estimate of a depth between 500 and 1000 m. The bathyal character of the fauna provides new evidence of a highly diversified and heterogeneous deep-sea Mediterranean Plio-Pleistocene marine fauna, in response to the climatic and hydrographical changes. Finally, the Fiumefreddo fauna provides new relevant data for the understanding of the processes involved in the evolution of the extant Mediterranean selachian fauna.
Elasmobranchii, sharks, bathyal, teeth, paleobiogeography, Pleistocene, Sicily, Italy