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You are here: Home / Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2019 / Amphibians and squamate reptiles from the late Pleistocene of the “Caverne Marie-Jeanne” (Hastière-Lavaux, Namur, Belgium): Systematics, paleobiogeography, and paleoclimatic and paleoenvironmental reconstructions

Hugues-Alexandre Blain, Almudena Martinez Monzon, Juan M. Lopez-Garcia, Ivan Lozano-Fernandez and Annelise Folie (2019)

Amphibians and squamate reptiles from the late Pleistocene of the “Caverne Marie-Jeanne” (Hastière-Lavaux, Namur, Belgium): Systematics, paleobiogeography, and paleoclimatic and paleoenvironmental reconstructions

Comptes Rendus Palevol, 18:849-875 (27 pages).

Archeological sites usually provide important information about the past distribution ofsmall vertebrate fauna, and by extension about past terrestrial environments and climatein which human activities took place. In this context, Belgium has an interesting location innorthwestern Europe between the fully studied zooarcheological records of Germany andEngland. We present here the revision of the late Pleistocene (Marine Isotope Stages 3 and 2)collection of the “Caverne Marie-Jeanne” (Hastière-Lavaux, Namur), studied by Jean-ClaudeRage in the 1970s and the revision of the whole “indeterminate” small vertebrate materialsfrom the “Caverne Marie-Jeanne” stored in the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences(RBINS) Quaternary collections in search of more herpetofaunal remains. It is now by farthe largest late Pleistocene collection at RBINS with more than 20,500 recognized bonesof amphibians and reptiles and covering the last 60,000 years. The faunal list comprisestwo urodeles (Lissotriton gr. L. vulgaris and Salamandra salamandra), four anurans (Bufo gr.B. bufo-spinosus, Epidalea calamita, Rana temporaria and Rana cf. R. arvalis), three lizards(Lacerta cf. L. agilis, Zootoca vivipara and Anguis gr. A. fragilis), and three snakes (Natrix gr.N. natrix, Coronella austriaca, and Vipera berus). This study represents the first fossil record in Belgium for L. gr. L. vulgaris, R. arvalis, Z. vivipara, N. gr. N. natrix and C. austriaca. As awhole, this assemblage suggests a patchy humid landscape under colder and dryer climaticconditions in comparison with present ones. This study also underlines the necessity of aprimary separation in larger taxonomical categories by the specialist itself.
Peer Review, International Redaction Board, Impact Factor, RBINS Collection(s)
Paleontology
Received 18 January 2019 Accepted after revision 29 April 2019 Available online 17 June 2019