A terrestrial vertebrate palaeontological review of Aldabra Atoll, Aldabra Group, Seychelles

Julian P. Hume, David Martill, Richard Hing

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    Abstract

    The Pleistocene vertebrate assemblage of Aldabra Atoll has been comparatively well studied. Three Upper Pleistocene fossil localities have been described yielding birds, reptiles and terrestrial molluscs. Those of Bassin Cabri and Bassin Lebine on Ile Picard are undated but must be in excess of 136,000 YBP, whereas Point Hodoul on Malabar Island is circa 100,000 YBP. Aldabra was seemingly completely submerged between deposition of the Ile Picard and Point Hodoul deposits, resulting in local faunal extinctions. Here we present the results of an ongoing study of fossil material collected on Ile Picard in 1987, which reveals a more diverse assemblage than previously realised. Notable discoveries are an Ardeola heron, three Procellariformes, tropic-bird Phaethon, gull Larus, rail Dryolimnas, harrier Circus and owl Tyto, plus evidence of recolonisation of the atoll by some seabirds, rail, harrier, owl, giant tortoises and lizards after the Ile Picard/Point Hodoul submergence event.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article numbere0192675
    JournalPLoS One
    Volume13
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 28 Mar 2018

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