The oldest fossil record of bandicoots (Marsupialia; Peramelemorphia) from the late Oligocene of Australia

KJ Travouillon, RMD Beck, SJ Hand, M Archer
2013 Palaeontologia Electronica  
Two new late Oligocene representatives of the marsupial order Peramelemorphia (bandicoots and bilbies) from the Etadunna Formation of South Australia are described here. Bulungu muirheadae sp. nov., from Zone B (Ditjimanka Local Fauna [LF]), is represented by several dentaries and isolated upper and lower molars. Bulungu campbelli sp. nov., from Zone C (Ngapakaldi LF), is represented by a single dentary and maxilla. Together, they represent the oldest fossil bandicoots described to date. Both
more » ... bed to date. Both are small (estimated body mass of <250 grams) in comparison to most living bandicoot species and were probably insectivorous based on their dental morphology. They appear to be congeneric with Bulungu palara from Miocene local faunas of the Riversleigh World Heritage Area (WHA), Queensland and the Kutjamarpu LF (Wipajiri Formation) of South Australia. However, the Zone B peramelemorphian appears to be more plesiomorphic than B. palara in its retention of complete centrocristae on all upper molars.
doi:10.26879/363 fatcat:q36a5dk6wjb4tdvfrkei3afcya