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1 March 2015 Biogeographic and Systematic Implications of a Caimanine from the Late Miocene of Southern Mexico
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Abstract

An isolated supraoccipital from the late Miocene of Chiapas, southern Mexico, can be referred to Caimaninae, a group including the living caimans and their closest extinct relatives. The specimen shares a polygonal shape, indicating lateral contact with the squamosals, with extant Caiman and Melanosuchus, but some extinct caimanine lineages had a similar morphology. This is the northernmost known caimanine occurrence during the Neogene, suggesting that members of this salt-intolerant lineage were present in North America possibly before the Isthmus of Panama was complete. It might also indicate that extant lineages within Caiman, including those found in Mesoamerica today, were distinct earlier than generally believed.

Christopher A. Brochu and Gerardo Carbot-Chanona "Biogeographic and Systematic Implications of a Caimanine from the Late Miocene of Southern Mexico," Journal of Herpetology 49(1), 138-142, (1 March 2015). https://doi.org/10.1670/13-134
Accepted: 1 July 2014; Published: 1 March 2015
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