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Systematics and phylogeny of hipparion neohipparion nannippus and cormohipparion mammalia equidae from the miocene and pliocene of the new world

, : Systematics and phylogeny of hipparion neohipparion nannippus and cormohipparion mammalia equidae from the miocene and pliocene of the new world. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 179(1): 1-195

Hipparions are a polyphyletic assemblage of 3-toed horses that lived during the Miocene and Pliocene in the Old and New worlds. Four hipparion genera are recognized from Central and North America, they are: Hipparion s.s. Neohipparion, Nannippus and Cormohipparion. Of the 41 previously named species of New World hipparions, 15 are referred to the existing genera and the remaining 26 spp. names are considered to be either junior synonyms, incertae sedis, nomina nuda or nomina dubia. One new species, H. shirleyi, is described from the late Barstovian of the Texas Gulf Coastal Plain [USA]. The systematics of New World hipparions is presented in a scheme that includes an integration of quantitative and qualitative dental and cranial characters. Statistical analyses of crania and dentitions provide determinations of the amount of character variation for North American hipparions. The hipparion from Mt. Leberon in southern France, H. prostylum de Christol, 1832, is the genotypic species of Hipparion s.s. In the New World, Hipparion s.s. is represented by 3 spp.: H. shirleyi, H. tohonense (Merriam), 1916a and H. forcei Richey, 1948, collectively known from the late Barstovian to the early Hemphillian of North America. Six species comprise the genus Neohipparion: N. coloradense (Osborn), 1918, N. affine (Leidy), 1869, N. trampasense (Edwards), 1982, N. leptode Merriam, 1915a, N. eurystyle (Cope), 1893 and N. gidleyi Merriam, 1915a, collectively known from the Clarendonian through late Hemphillian of Central and North America. Four species comprise the genus Nannippus: N. minor (Sellards), 1916, N. ingenuus (Leidy), 1885, N. beckensis Dalquest and Donovan, 1973 and N. peninsulatus (Cope), 1885, collectively known from the Clarendonian through late Blancan of Central and North America. In the New World, the genus Cormohipparion consists of 3 spp., C. goorisi MacFadden and Skinner, 1981, C. sphenodus (Cope), 1889 and C. occidentale (Leidy), 1856, collectively known from the early Barstovian through early Hemphillian of North America. Hipparions are closely related to, or arose from, at least 2 separate taxa within the merychippine horse complex. The earliest North American hipparion, C. goorisi, is known from the 15-million-year old early Barstovian Gulf Coastal Plain of Texas. The peak of hipparian diversity in North America occurred about 12-8 1/2 million years ago during the height of the Clarendonian chronofauna. Hipparion diversity dropped during the Hemphillian. Only the genus Nannippus is known from the Blancan. Some previous workers state that all Old World hipparions were monophyletically descended from the oldest Old World species H. primigenium. Based on similar hipparion facial morphotypes represented in both the Old and New worlds, it is possible that there were at least 2 hipparion dispersal events across Beringia, resulting in a polyphyletic assemblage in the Old World.

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