Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Extinct rodent species discovered

30.07.2009
Study published in the journal Comptes Rendus Palevol

An international team of scientists has discovered an extinct rodent species, based on fossil tooth remains found in Alborache, Valencia. Eomyops noeliae, from the Eomyidae family, represents the oldest find within this genus in the world.

The small number of fossils found has prevented the scientists from the University of Valencia (UV), who have led this research study, from being able to gain a full picture of this "new" rodent. However, they have been able to prove – on the basis of just the teeth, the only fossil remains discovered – that Eomyops noeliae was morphologically and biometrically different from other rodents of the Eomyops genus. The new species provides valuable evolutionary, biostratigraphic and paleoenvironmental information related to this rodent, which was of average size within the group.

"Until now, the Eomyops genus was made up of a group of small species and one large one, but no intermediately-sized kinds such as Eomyops noeliae had been found", Francisco Javier Ruiz-Sánchez, lead author of the study published in the French journal Comptes Rendus Palevol and a researcher in the UV's Department of Geology, tells SINC.

The palaeontologists have also confirmed the age of the find. "The fossils found in the Morteral 20A deposit in Valencia show that this is the oldest species within the genus known in the world with absolute certainty", points out Ruiz-Sánchez. According to this data, Eomyops noeliae would have lived during the Aragonese period "perhaps between the Lower and Middle Miocene (around 16 million years ago)", underscores the researcher.

The rodent's wet environment

The varied fauna of micro-mammals and the new species found in the Valencian deposit provide information about the environmental conditions in which these animals would have lived at the time. "The rodent taxa found show evidence that the environment was very wet", says Ruiz-Sánchez, even though the full study on all the fossil rodent remains, begun with this new eomyid, has still not been completed.

According to the study, the environment was "relatively thickly wooded, and the climate was wet", although other factors such as temperature have not yet been defined.

The biogeographical data also show that Eomyops noeliae lived throughout the east of the Iberian Peninsula during the Lower-Middle Miocene. This has been confirmed from the Eomyops species remains excavated from the "most recent" Morteral 22 deposit, which is very close to Morteral 20A.

Ruiz-Sánchez says the finds of this species' teeth in deposit strata separated by just a few metres show that "how this species survived in the east of the peninsula over a specific time period that is currently hard to define, but which must have gone on for several tens of thousands of years".

Reference: Ruiz-Sánchez, Francisco Javier; Lázaro Calatayud, Belén; Freudenthal, Matthijs. "Eomyops noeliae sp nov., a new Eomyidae (Mammalia, Rodentia) from the Aragonian of Spain" Comptes Rendus Palevol 8(4): 375-384 may-june 2009.

SINC | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.plataformasinc.es

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Transport of molecular motors into cilia
28.03.2017 | Aarhus University

nachricht Asian dust providing key nutrients for California's giant sequoias
28.03.2017 | University of California - Riverside

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A Challenging European Research Project to Develop New Tiny Microscopes

The Institute of Semiconductor Technology and the Institute of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, both members of the Laboratory for Emerging Nanometrology (LENA), at Technische Universität Braunschweig are partners in a new European research project entitled ChipScope, which aims to develop a completely new and extremely small optical microscope capable of observing the interior of living cells in real time. A consortium of 7 partners from 5 countries will tackle this issue with very ambitious objectives during a four-year research program.

To demonstrate the usefulness of this new scientific tool, at the end of the project the developed chip-sized microscope will be used to observe in real-time...

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Researchers shoot for success with simulations of laser pulse-material interactions

29.03.2017 | Materials Sciences

Igniting a solar flare in the corona with lower-atmosphere kindling

29.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

As sea level rises, much of Honolulu and Waikiki vulnerable to groundwater inundation

29.03.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>