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Sinomegaceros

Sinomegaceros
Temporal range: Early Pleistocene–Late Pleistocene
Sinomegaceros yabei - National Museum of Nature and Science, Tokyo - DSC06925.JPG
Sinomegaceros yabei at the National Museum of Nature and Science, Tokyo
肿骨大角鹿 大庆博物馆.jpg
Sinomegaceros pachyosteus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Artiodactyla
Family: Cervidae
Subfamily: Cervinae
Genus: Sinomegaceros
Dietrich, 1933
Species
  • S. yabei Shikama, 1938
  • S. pachyosteus Young, 1932
  • S. flabellatus Teilhard de Chardin, 1936
  • S. konwanlinensis Chow, Hu and Lee, 1965
  • S. tadzhikistanis Vislobokova, 1988
  • S. ordosianus Young, 1932
Synonyms
  • Cervus (Sinomegaceroides) Shikama, 1949
  • Megaceros (Sinomegaceros) Kahlke & Hu, 1957
  • Mongolomegaceros Shikama & Okafuji, 1958
  • Megaceraxis Matsumoto, 1963

Sinomegaceros is an extinct genus of deer known from the Early to Late Pleistocene of East Asia. It is considered to be part of the group of "giant deer" (often referred to collectively as members of the tribe Megacerini), with a probable close relationship to Megaloceros. Many members of the genus are noted for their distinctive palmate antler brow tines.

Taxonomy

Drawing of the braincase and antlers of Sinomegaceros ordosianus
Sinomegaceros yabei head closeup

The first species of the genus S. ordosianus and S. pachyosteus were named by legendary Chinese paleontologist C. C. Young as species of Cervus in 1932 for material from Zhoukoudian. In a review of the paper the subsequent year Dietrich created the name Sinomegaceros as a subgenus of Cervus to house the species, with S. pachyosteus as the type species. Due to the fact that the name was not published in a formal research paper, it was not widely used for several decades after publication. The species S. yabei was named in 1938. In the following decades various researchers considered it a subgenus of Megaloceros, or a distinct genus. Several named species are likely to be junior synonyms. The best known species are Sinomegaceros yabei from the Middle to Late Pleistocene of Japan, alongside Sinomegaceros pachyosteus from the late Early Pleistocene to Late Pleistocene of China. An unpublished PhD thesis of mitochondrial genomes from Sinomegaceros found that they were part of Cervinae, and were within the clade containing mitochondrial genomes of the Irish elk, suggesting introgression.

Evolution

The oldest known species in China is S. konwanlinensis from the lower Lishui Formation, around 1.1-1.15 Million years ago (Ma). S. pachyosteus appears around 1 Ma. Among the youngest known dates of S. ordosianus are around 35-50 kya in the Ordos. S. yabei first appears in the latter half of the Middle Pleistocene in Japan. It has been suggested that both S. pachyosteus and S. yabei ultimately derive from S. konwanlinensis. The latest reliable dates for S. yabei are around 40,000 years Before Present.

This page was last updated at 2022-01-04 00:32 UTC. Update now. View original page.

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