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1 January 2007 New Sivaladapid Primates from the Eocene Pondaung Formation of Myanmar and the Anthropoid Status of Amphipithecidae
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Fossil primates from the late middle Eocene Pondaung Formation of Myanmar have figured prominently in recent efforts to reconstruct the early evolutionary history of anthropoids. The anthropoid affinities of Amphipithecidae, the most abundant fossil primates currently known from the Pondaung Formation, have proven to be particularly controversial. Here we describe two new genera and species, Paukkaungia parva and Kyitchaungia takaii, of sivaladapid primates from the Pondaung Formation. Tarsal elements that are appropriate in size and morphology to belong to Kyitchaungia takaii are also described. These are the first undoubted adapiforms—and the first fossil primates other than anthropoids—to be reported from the Eocene of Myanmar. The discovery of sivaladapids in the Pondaung Formation enhances the taxonomic and paleoecological diversity of the late middle Eocene primate fauna of Myanmar. In this respect, the fossil primate community from the Pondaung Formation appears to have resembled roughly contemporaneous assemblages from China, Thailand, and Pakistan. The newly discovered sivaladapid tarsal elements help to resolve conflicting interpretations regarding the taxonomic allocation of large-bodied primate postcranial elements from the Pondaung Formation. The NMMP 20 partial skeleton from the Pondaung Formation, which has often been regarded as that of an amphipithecid, is more plausibly interpreted as pertaining to a third Pondaung sivaladapid. Recognizing the sivaladapid affinities of the NMMP 20 partial skeleton solidifies the anthropoid status of amphipithecids, further constraining temporal, phylogenetic, and biogeographic hypotheses regarding anthropoid origins.

K. Christopher Beard, Laurent Marivaux, Soe Thura Tun, Aung Naing Soe, Yaowalak Chaimanee, Wanna Htoon, Bernard Marandat, Htun Htun Aung, and Jean-Jacques Jaeger "New Sivaladapid Primates from the Eocene Pondaung Formation of Myanmar and the Anthropoid Status of Amphipithecidae," Bulletin of Carnegie Museum of Natural History 2007(39), (1 January 2007).[67:NSPFTE]2.0.CO;2
Published: 1 January 2007

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