Subject: TINGAMARRA REVISITED
Date: Fri, 18 May 2001 15:15:38 +0100
On metatherians 'vs' placentals, Tim wrote...
> To add to that, a tooth (named _Tingamarra porterorum_) from the early
> Eocene of Murgon in southeastern Queensland, Australia, has been
> regarded as pertaining to a "condylarth".
I deliberately avoided mention of _Tingamarra_ because it's status as a
putative basal ungulate (or condylarth or whatever) is by no means
certain. This I learnt from Tom Rich who mentioned similarities the
specimen has with _Slaughteria_, a basal tribosphenid (or possible
metatherian) from North America.
_Australian Journal of Mammalogy_ (I think) recently ran a huge
multi-author review paper of the Australian mammal fossil record. The
same doubts about _Tingamarra_ were mentioned in there too, though
I forget under which heading _Tingamarra_ was discussed (possibly
the bit at the end about problematica - e.g. Owen's Australian elephants
[_Elephas australis_ etc.]). As usual I'm at university and the paper is
> I haven't heard anything recently on the affinities of _Tingamarra_,
> especially in light of the "break-up" of the Condylarthra.
Obviously the traditional concept of Condylarthra is in trouble as it's
horribly paraphyletic. McKenna and Bell however recognised a more
restrictive group of this name which includes phenacodontids,
ectoconids, periptychids, mioclaenids and (IIRC) didolodontids.
Didolodontids supposedly share ?tooth characters with basal litopterns
though, so even this doesn't work - - in their introduction McKenna
and Bell do say though that they can accept 'a tolerable amount of
paraphyly' (or something similar). Periptychids and mioclaenids were
recently united in the Bubulodentata by... no, drat, can't remember....
(possibly David Archibold).
"I was going to vote for the Apathy Party, but I just can't be bothered"
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