Degree Name

MS (Master of Science)

Program

Geosciences

Date of Award

5-2013

Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Steven C. Wallace

Committee Members

Blaine W. Schubert, Jim I. Mead

Abstract

Procyonids are well known biologically but knowledge of their fossil record is comparatively sparse. This study seeks to describe a sample of late Blancan procyonid fossils composed mostly of postcranial and dental material. Fossils are analyzed using linear and 2D geometric morphometrics and compared with a large sample of modern specimens from a wide geographic area to understand the range of intraspecific variation. The large Procyon species is described as a new taxon based on morphology of the postcrania and lower dentition, while another Procyon species is also described as new due to an apomorphy in the upper dentition. A new species of coati (genus Nasua) is identified and described based on lower dentition and postcranial morphology. The Blancan species P. rexroadensis is synonymized with P. lotor because the distinguishing dental feature for which the species is named is within the range of variation for P. lotor.

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Copyright

Copyright by the authors.

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