Identification of the French Upper Cretaceous bothremydid turtle Foxemys mechinorum in the Spanish record

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Geobios, ISSN: 0016-6995, Vol: 51, Issue: 3, Page: 211-217

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Adán Pérez-García; Francisco Ortega
Elsevier BV
Earth and Planetary Sciences
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Bothremydidae is the most abundant and diverse group of turtles in the upper Cretaceous fossil sites of southwestern Europe. Several species a priori recognized as exclusive of the Portuguese, Spanish and French records were defined. The most abundant and best-preserved Spanish collection of pleurodiran turtles from the last Stages of the Upper Cretaceous comes from the fossil site of Lo Hueco (Cuenca Province, Central Spain). The bothremydid Iberoccitanemys convenarum, defined by a single specimen from the Maastrichtian of Haute-Garonne (Southern France), was subsequently recognized as a very abundant form in this Spanish site, corresponding to the only bothremydid so far identified as being part of the diversity of Bothremydidae of both countries. The presence of a second member of Bothremydidae was recognized in Lo Hueco, representing the only evidence of the synchronic and sympatric coexistence of two members of this lineage in a European site. However, very scarce information about this second form from Lo Hueco was available. Thus, its attribution to a new taxon or to a member of Foxemydina previously identified in the Spanish record, or in that of other European regions, could not be evaluated until now. New material from Lo Hueco, not attributable to I. convenarum but to this second larger form, allows its generic and specific identification. Close paleobiogeographical relationships considering the fauna of pleurodiran turtles from Spain and France are recognized thanks to the findings performed in Lo Hueco: not only I. convenarum is known in both countries, but also the French Foxemys mechinorum is identified in Central Spain.