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Paleogene of asia mammals and stratigraphy



Paleogene of asia mammals and stratigraphy



Memoires du Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle Serie C Sciences de la Terre 52: 1-488



Knowledge of the Paleogene faunas of Asia has greatly suffered in the past from regionalism, as much in the Soviet Union [USSR] as in the People's Republic of China. This isolation was considerably aggravated with respect to scientists in the Western world; linguistic barriers and the dispersion of information in sometimes inaccessible publications were the principal causes of this problem. Moreover, the geographic situation of many localities, as well as their faunal contents or their age, remained inaccurate or estimated on faulty data. The authors of this book have tried to list the mammalian assemblages known during the Paleogene for the entire continent of Asia. In the light of the substantial progress in paleontology that has occurred in recent decades, systematic determinations have been brought up to date. At the same time an attempt has been made to explain the stratigraphic and sedimentologic environment existing at each locality, and the reasons behind the age proposed for the beds and the fauna. Consequently, in this book will be found complete faunal lists, with synonyms and bibliographic references, a detailed description of the sediments, and the justification of the age attributed. The latter endeavor has resulted in the modification of the supposed age of a considerable number of geologic formations; the Paleogene sediments of China, like those of a large part of the rest of Asia, are of terrestrial origin and the instances where it is possible to correlate with the marine series are extremely rare. In arriving at these modifications, first the elements of the mammalian faunas were compared and a correlation chart for the Asian continent constructed. From this base it was then possible to compare Asian faunas with those of Europe and North America, and to integrate them into the biostratigraphic scales established on these continents. The major regions of the northern hemisphere are now firmly linked for the Paleogene in a fairly uniform sequence of contemporaneous faunas. As early as the late Paleocene it is possible to recognize common elements in the assemblages of china and North America. The same occurs during the early Eocene, where genera found on all three continents are known. With the middle Eocene evidence of intercontinental faunal exchange reaches a maximum. These migrations continued into the early Oligocene, after which faunal resemblances decrease. This volume ends with the proposal of a series of Land Mammal Ages for Asia, similar in concept to those already used in Europe and North America. Many maps and lithostratigraphic sections illustrate the book, which concludes, as an aid to the reader, with a geologic, geographic and systematic index.

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The Paleogene of Asia: mammals and stratigraphy. Memoires du Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle Serie C Sciences de la Terre, 52: 1-488, 1987

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