New light on Parasorex depereti (Erinaceomorpha: Erinaceidae: Galericini) from the Late Messinian (MN 13) of the Monticino Quarry (Brisighella, Faenza, Italy)


A large-sized species of Parasorex is common in the MN 13 mammal assemblages from the uppermost Messinian sandy-marly fissure fillings within the Gessoso Solfifera Formation at Brisighella (Northern Apennine). This erinaceid has been classified as Galerix sp. in the first papers on the Brisighella fauna. Later, it was described in detail in an unpublished Ph.D. dissertation by Fanfani (1999), who referred it to Galerix depereti. Van den Hoek Ostende (2001) included G. depereti in the genus Parasorex, Parasorex depereti has been described by Crochet (1986) on scarce material from a few Early Pliocene (MN 14–15) localities of southern France and Spain. Parasorex cf. depereti has been reported from the Early Pliocene fauna of Capo Mannu (Mandriola, Sardinia; Furió and Angelone 2010). The species seems actually distributed in south-western Europe, where it represents the youngest occurrence of the genus Parasorex. The very abundant sample of P. depereti from fissure filling BRS 25 enables a more accurate and comprehensive description of the species. It also permits inspection of the mesial elements of the dentition, which were lacking in the material examined by Crochet (1986). The systematic position of the species has been revisited and compared with those of other Galericini of the Parasorex group.

Key words

Parasorex, Messinian, taxonomy, biometry, emended diagnosis