Abstract

In continental environment, the lack of stratigraphic support generate a problem to establish chronological sequences. Therefore, the bio-chronology of the European continental Palaeogene, has been early based on phylogenetic hypotheses resulting from studies on mammalian evolutionary lineages as well as associated faunal events (first appearance datum [FAD] and last appearance datum [LAD] taxa). A few years ago, some methods have been developed to formalize and quantify the chronological time span between mammalian localities, and to establish their relative time succession. This paper proposes a brief analysis of three quantitative biochronology methods (Martinez, Guex, and Hooker Methods) applied to mammalian faunas from western Europe of the late Eocene-Oligocene period. Whereas palaeoenvironnemental changes affect generally the results obtained with the method based only on the occurrence/non-occurrence taxa (Hooker), the use of evolutionary stages in several lineages appears more reliable (Martinez, Guex). Phenetical approaches cannot be applied to problems of relative dating.

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