A skull of Machairodus Kaup, 1833 (Felidae, Mammalia) from the late Miocene of Hadjidimovo (Bulgaria), and its place in the evolution of the genus


en Geodiversitas 42 (9) - Pages 123-137

Published on 16 April 2020

This article is a part of the thematic issue Memorial to Stéphane Peigné – Carnivores (Hyaenodonta and Carnivora) of the Cenozoic

The late Miocene locality Hadjidimovo in Southwestern Bulgaria has yielded a huge collection of mammalian fossils, including a complete skull of Machairodus Kaup, 1833, first described (in Bulgarian) by Kovachev (2002). We re-describe it here, compare it with other Machairodus, and review the evolution of the genus. We conclude that the transition from M. aphanistus (Kaup, 1832) to M. giganteus (Wagner, 1848) is gradual and mosaic, that assigning these species to different genera fails to reflect this relationship, and that the Hadjidimovo skull represents a rather late evolutionary stage of this lineage.


Bulgaria, Late Miocene, Machairodontinae, saber-tooth felid

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