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NOTES ON THE OCCURRENCE OF FOSSIL ELEPHANTS AND STEGODONTS IN SOLANA, CAGAYAN, NORTHERN LUZON, PHILIPPINES

SILVIO M. LOPEZ

 

 

 

 

INTRODUCTION



The first vertebrate fossil recorded from the Philippines was a fragment of a lower molar of a stegodont found in Agusan, Northwestern Mindanao. Naumann (1887) described it as a form belonging to the Java species Stegodon trigonocephabus Martin but he later (Naumann, 1890) made it as the type of a new species Stegodorn, mindanensis. Beyer (1947) reported several fossil mammals from Luzon. Von Koenigswald (1956) examined Beyer’s collection and recognized three new forms:

Stegodon Iuzonensis
Elephas beyeri
Rhinoceros philippinensis

The National Museum made several collections of vertebrate fossils from Solana, Cagayan in August, 1971 and May, 1972. Species belonging to the Proboscidea which are well represented in the Solana fauna are discussed in this report. The assemblage is very poorly represented as most of the skeletal remains were probably destroyed either by scavengers prior to entombment or by erosional processes. Fragments of rhinoceros jaw, suid jaw, deer antler, and tortoise carapace were found.

Most of the specimens are surface finds. Some apparently occur in situ although they were excavated only a few centimeters below the surface of eroding knolls which are underlain by weathered, argillized, tuffaceous sediments considered of Middle Pleistocene age. Von Koenigswald (1956) found Rhinoceros philippinensis von Koenigswald from the same type of sediments in Bo. Laya, Tabuk, Kalinga-Apayao about 10 kilometers southwest from the Solana locality.

 

 

 

 

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