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1 October 2006 FOSSIL REMAINS OF A NEW, DIMINUTIVE BUBALUS (ARTIODACTYLA: BOVIDAE: BOVINI) FROM CEBU ISLAND, PHILIPPINES
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Abstract

We describe a partial skeleton of a new species of Bubalus (Bubalus) from soft karst near Balamban, Cebu Island, Philippines. The specimen is likely Pleistocene or Holocene in age and includes left and right humeri, a left metatarsal, 2 posterior thoracic vertebrae, 2 left lower molars, and a pair of ungual phalanges. Bubalus sp. nov. differs from all previously described Bubalus in both the size and proportions of the skeleton and in possessing a unique combination of discrete character states. Possible autapomorphies for Bubalus sp. nov. evident in the metatarsal include a very broad dorsal longitudinal sulcus; a broad, triangular anterior cubonavicular facet; and a sulcus that bisects a small tuberosity on the proximolateral surface. Limb elements of Bubalus sp. nov. are less than two-thirds the length of corresponding elements of the Asiatic water buffalo, B. (Bubalus) bubalis, and are about 80% the length of those of the tamaraw, B. (Bubalus) mindorensis; they are similar in length to limb bones of the lowland anoa, B. (Anoa) depressicornis, but are more robust. Mass estimates based on regression equations for modern bovids suggests a mass of 150–165 kg for Bubalus sp. nov.; this is approximately 25% smaller than B. mindorensis (180–220 kg) and at least 15% larger than B. depressicornis (approximately 135 kg). The small size of Bubalus sp. nov. relative to other B. (Bubalus) is likely attributable to island dwarfing; this is supported by a consistent relationship between body size and island size in Bubalus sp. nov., B. mindorensis, and B. bubalis, and by the relatively larger dentition of B. sp. nov. relative to body size. Bubalus sp. nov. is the 1st fossil mammal to be reported from Cebu Island and is the only nonproboscidean documented from the Negros–Panay Philippine Faunal Region. In conjunction with the presence of Bubalus on Mindoro Island (and potentially Luzon), this specimen suggests that Bubalus may once have ranged throughout the Philippines.

Darin A. Croft, Lawrence R. Heaney, John J. Flynn, and Angel P. Bautista "FOSSIL REMAINS OF A NEW, DIMINUTIVE BUBALUS (ARTIODACTYLA: BOVIDAE: BOVINI) FROM CEBU ISLAND, PHILIPPINES," Journal of Mammalogy 87(5), (1 October 2006). https://doi.org/10.1644/06-MAMM-A-018R.1
Accepted: 1 March 2006; Published: 1 October 2006
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