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Article: The Pleistocene rodent Alterodon major and the mammalian biogeography of Jamaica

Publication: Palaeontology
Volume: 26
Part: 4
Publication Date: November 1983
Page(s): 831 837
Author(s): R. D. E. MacPhee, C. A. Woods and G. S. Morgan
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How to Cite

MACPHEE, R. D. E., WOODS, C. A., MORGAN, G. S. 1983. The Pleistocene rodent Alterodon major and the mammalian biogeography of Jamaica. Palaeontology26, 4, 831–837.

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The putative Jamaican octodontid rodent AIterodon major is based on a single cheek tooth. Restudy of this specimen indicates that it is probably incomplete, and that it is much more likely to represent a heptaxodontid than an octodontid. If this inference is correct, then there is no longer any reason to believe that there was an independent octodontid invasion of Jamaica. Although this clears up one biogeographical puzzle, no new light is shed thereby on the origins and dispersals of Caribbean land mammals. Jamaica occupies a key position in island-hopping models, but virtually nothing is known of the mammalian palaeontology of this island. Further investigations are clearly indicated.
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