Abstract

The fluvial Neogene Siwalik formations of northern Pakistan span long time intervals with only minor hiatuses and, being highly fossiliferous, are uniquely suited for studies of change in mammalian faunas. Magnetostratigraphic correlations of a critical stratigraphic section give dates for 45 middle and late Miocene biostratigraphic events. These mark either first appearances or extinctions in the mammal fauna and show that in the Siwaliks there were major fauna turnovers at between 20 and 16 Ma and at 9.5 and 7.4 Ma. Two minor faunal events are dated at 13.2 and about 12 Ma. Many species making their first appearance were immigrants from Europe or Africa and indicate when connections to those regions existed. Immigration and extinction were the dominant modes of faunal change; in situ evolution was much less important. The Siwalik biostratigraphic record correlates closely to climatic, oceanographic, and tectonic events, which probably controlled immigration into southern Asia. Abiotic events were therefore important factors affecting evolution of the mammal communities.

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