Plio-Pleistocene amphibians and reptiles from Central Turkey: new faunas and faunal records with comments on their biochronological position based on small mammals
Small fossil vertebrates from several Pliocene and Pleistocene localities in Central Anatolia (Turkey) are reviewed. Data on small mammals represent assemblages from the early Pliocene (MN 14: Nasrettinhoca 1, 2 and Hamamkarahisar A, B), and late Pliocene (MN 16: Hoyhoytepe 1, 2, 3 and Mercan 1); Early Pleistocene (MN 17: Mercan 2), and Middle Pleistocene (MQ 1/MQ 2: Yenişarbademli). The biochronology related characters of arvicolines Promimomys, Mimomys, Microtus, Lagurus and Clethrionomys are briefly discussed. Data on the systematics of fossil amphibians and reptiles is also described from these localities. The early Pliocene (MN 14) assemblages significantly add to knowledge on the herpetofaunal composition of this stratigraphic level, which until now was poorly characterized in Turkey. Remains of Pelobatidae, Bufonidae, Ranidae, Amphisbaenia and Natricinae are reported for the first time from the MN 14 biozone of Turkey. Palaeobatrachus from Mercan 1 extends the temporal range of this group in the Eastern Mediterranean into the late Pliocene. The described remains of amphibians and reptiles from Turkey span a considerable stratigraphic range from the early Pliocene to the Middle Pleistocene (time interval of about 5 Ma) and partly fill a gap in the palaeoherpetofaunal record of the Eastern Mediterranean.