Late Cenozoic biostratigraphy of Europe: mammal zones and the fossil record of birds [Pozdně kenozoická biostratigrafie Evropy: savčí zóny a fosilní nálezy ptáků]
|Citation||MLÍKOVSKÝ, Jiří. Late Cenozoic biostratigraphy of Europe: mammal zones and the fossil record of birds [Pozdně kenozoická biostratigrafie Evropy: savčí zóny a fosilní nálezy ptáků]. Lynx, new series. Prague: National Museum, 2001, 32(1), 279–294. DOI: https://doi.org/. ISSN 0024-7774 (print), 1804-6460 (online). Also available from: https://publikace.nm.cz/en/periodicals/lns/32-1/late-cenozoic-biostratigraphy-of-europe-mammal-zones-and-the-fossil-record-of-birds-pozdne-kenozoicka-biostratigrafie-evropy-savci-zony-a-fosilni-nalezy-ptaku|
The mammal-based biostratigraphy of the late Cenozoic of Europe was compared with the fossil record of birds. Three basic questions were addressed: suitability of the avian record for biostratigraphy, paleornithological contribution to the recognition of main biostratigraphical periods, and the history of avian faunas. Main conclusions are as follows:
- – Validity of the avian record: (1) Paleornithological data are not sufficient for detailed biostratigraphical decisions yet. (2) Stratigraphical appearance and changes in distribution can be exactly estimated for basic types of avian faunas and for several well represented avian taxa. (3) Appearance and disappearance of avian taxa is markedly diachronous in the studied time-space.
- – Paleornithological definitions of biostratigraphical periods: (1) The middle/late Miocene, i.e. MN 8/9 boundary is well characterized by the whole-scale extinction of aquatic and wetland birds, and by the appearance of a steppe avifauna in eastern Europe. (2) The Vallesian/Turolian, i.e. the MN 10/11 boundary is not supported by paleornithological data. (3) The Miocene/Pliocene, i.e. the MN 13/14 boundary is well characterized by the appearance of the boreal avifauna, by re-arrangement of the east European steppe avifauna, and by the spread of the latter avifauna to SW Europe. (4) The E-L-E datum, i.e. the MN 14/15 boundary, is not supported by paleornithological data. (5) The early/late Pliocene, i.e. the MN 15/16 boundary is not supported by paleornithological data. (6) The MN 18 zone should be assigned to the Pliocene. (7) The Pliocene/Pleistocene, i.e. the MN 18 / MQ 1 boundary is well characterized by the extinction or retreat of boreal elements, by a re-arrangement of the eastern steppe avifauna, including the local extinction of its last Miocene elements, and by the appearance of southern steppe avifauna. (8) The Pliocene, i.e. MN 14–18, is characterized by continuing immigration of elements of the boreal avifauna. The flow was interrupted in MQ 1a, and restarted in MQ 1b. (9) Early/middle Pleistocene, i.e. MQ 1/2 boundary is well characterized by the extinction of Alectoris donnezani, and by the appearance of various modern taxa with different zoogeographic relations.
- – History of avian faunas: (1) Europe has never been in a “splendid isolation”. To the contrary, it has been a marginal region of Asia and Africa in the studied time-space. No avian faunas and supraspecific taxa are known to have developed here. The history of local avian faunas is largely the history of the expansion and retreat of other avifaunas. (2) Eastern steppe avifauna entered eastern Europe in MN 9. Main rearrangements took place at the MN 13/14 and MN 18 / MQ 1 boundaries. This avifauna was limited to the eastern and southeastern Europe in MN 9–13, reaching SW Europe in MN 14. (3) Boreal avifauna appeared in Europe in MN 14 and remained limited to the Central Europe and the Balkans through much of its further existence. It was continuously enriched by new coming taxa in the course of MN 14–18 and from the MQ 1b onwards, with a break in MQ 1a. The only, less significant rearrangement occurred at the MN 18 / MQ 1 boundary. (4) Southern steppe avifauna appeared in Europe in MQ 1a. No rearrangements were recorded. (5) Avifauna of southern Palearctic mountains probably appeared in Europe in MN 18, almost or entirely left it in MQ 1a, and returned in MQ 1b, closely corresponding with the fluctuation of the boreal avifauna.