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New fossil discoveries from the Miocene of Nepal include a hominoid


We present here preliminary findings of recent field studies on Miocene Lower Siwaliks deposits of southwestern Nepal. Twenty-four vertebrate taxa are now represented from over 50 localities. The fauna is largely aquatic, being dominated by fish, turtles, crocodiles and aquatic snakes. Lithologies indicate deposition in sluggish streams and associated environments. Biostratigraphy indicates correlation between the composite Nepal fauna and Lower Siwaliks faunas of India and Pakistan, a conclusion corroborated by a palaeomagnetic study showing an age of 9–10 Myr for some of the fossil sites. A hominoid specimen, found in Tinau Khola, is 9.0–9.5-Myr old. It is similar to several specimens of small Miocene hominoids from Pakistan and India, and helps fill the geographical gap between hominoids collected previously in northwestern India and southern China.

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Munthe, J., Dongol, B., Hutchison, J. et al. New fossil discoveries from the Miocene of Nepal include a hominoid. Nature 303, 331–333 (1983).

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