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Extinct peccary “Cynorca” occidentale (Tayassuidae, Tayassuinae) from the Miocene of Panama and correlations to North America

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  14 July 2015

Bruce J. Macfadden
Affiliation:
1Florida Museum of Natural History, University of Florida, Gainesville, 32611—7800 2Division of Research on Learning (DRL/EHR), National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, Virginia 22230
Michael X. Kirby
Affiliation:
3Environmental Planning Group (EPG, Inc.), 4141 North 32nd Street, Phoenix, Arizona 85018
Aldo Rincon
Affiliation:
4Center for Tropical Paleoecology and Archaeology, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Balboa, Ancón, Panam´, Republic of Panam´
Camilo Montes
Affiliation:
4Center for Tropical Paleoecology and Archaeology, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Balboa, Ancón, Panam´, Republic of Panam´
Sara Moron
Affiliation:
4Center for Tropical Paleoecology and Archaeology, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Balboa, Ancón, Panam´, Republic of Panam´
Nikki Strong
Affiliation:
4Center for Tropical Paleoecology and Archaeology, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Balboa, Ancón, Panam´, Republic of Panam´
Carlos Jaramillo
Affiliation:
4Center for Tropical Paleoecology and Archaeology, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Balboa, Ancón, Panam´, Republic of Panam´

Abstract

Recently collected specimens of the extinct tayassuine peccary “Cynorca” occidentale (and another indeterminant tayassuid) are described from new excavations along the southern reaches of the Panama Canal. Fossil peccaries were previously unknown from Panama, and these new tayassuid specimens therefore add to the extinct mammalian biodiversity in this region. “Cynorca” occidentale occurs in situ in the Centenario Fauna (new name) from both the upper part of the Culebra Formation and overlying Cucaracha Formation, thus encompassing a stratigraphic interval that includes both of these formations and the previously described and more restricted Gaillard Cut Local Fauna. “Cynorca” occidentale is a primitive member of the clade that gives rise to modern tayassuines in the New World. Diagnostic characters for “C.” occidentale include a retained primitive M1, reduced M3, and shallow mandible, and this species is small relative to most other extinct and modern tayassuine peccaries. Based on the closest biostratigraphic comparisions (Maryland, Florida, Texas, and California), the presence of “C.” occidentale indicates an interval of uncertain duration within the early Hemingfordian (He1) to early Barstovian (Ba 1) land mammal ages (early to middle Miocene) for the Centenario Fauna, between about 19 and 14.8 million years ago. Based on what is known of the modern ecology of tayassuines and previous paleoecological interpretations for Panama, “C.” occidentale likely occupied a variety of environments, ranging from forested to open country habitat mosaics and fed on the diverse array of available plants.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © The Paleontological Society 

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