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Megafaunal meiolaniid horned turtles survived until early human settlement in Vanuatu, Southwest Pacific

White, Arthur W; Worthy, Trevor H; Hawkins, Stuart; Bedford, Stuart; Spriggs, Matthew

Description

Meiolaniid or horned turtles are members of the extinct Pleistocene megafauna of Australia and the southwest Pacific. The timing and causes of their extinction have remained elusive. Here we report the remains of meiolaniid turtles from cemetery and midden layers dating 3,100/3,000 calibrated years before present to approximately 2,900/2,800 calibrated years before present in the Teouma Lapita archaeological site on Efate in Vanuatu. The remains are mainly leg bones; shell fragments are scant...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorWhite, Arthur W
dc.contributor.authorWorthy, Trevor H
dc.contributor.authorHawkins, Stuart
dc.contributor.authorBedford, Stuart
dc.contributor.authorSpriggs, Matthew
dc.date.accessioned2015-12-10T22:29:28Z
dc.identifier.issn0027-8424
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/54918
dc.description.abstractMeiolaniid or horned turtles are members of the extinct Pleistocene megafauna of Australia and the southwest Pacific. The timing and causes of their extinction have remained elusive. Here we report the remains of meiolaniid turtles from cemetery and midden layers dating 3,100/3,000 calibrated years before present to approximately 2,900/2,800 calibrated years before present in the Teouma Lapita archaeological site on Efate in Vanuatu. The remains are mainly leg bones; shell fragments are scant and there are no cranial or caudal elements, attesting to off-site butchering of the turtles. The new taxon differs markedly from other named insular terrestrial horned turtles. It is the only member of the family demonstrated to have survived into the Holocene and the first known to have become extinct after encountering humans.
dc.publisherNational Academy of Sciences (USA)
dc.sourcePNAS - Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
dc.subjectKeywords: archeology; article; nonhuman; priority journal; species extinction; survival; taxon; turtle; Vanuatu; Animals; Australia; Bone and Bones; Extinction, Biological; Fossils; Geography; Humans; Time Factors; Turtles; Vanuatu; Meiolaniidae; Testudines Extinction; Lapita people; Meiolaniidae; Middens; Taxonomy
dc.titleMegafaunal meiolaniid horned turtles survived until early human settlement in Vanuatu, Southwest Pacific
dc.typeJournal article
local.description.notesImported from ARIES
local.identifier.citationvolume107
dc.date.issued2010
local.identifier.absfor210106 - Archaeology of New Guinea and Pacific Islands (excl. New Zealand)
local.identifier.absfor060301 - Animal Systematics and Taxonomy
local.identifier.ariespublicationf2965xPUB314
local.type.statusPublished Version
local.contributor.affiliationWhite, Arthur W, University of New South Wales
local.contributor.affiliationWorthy, Trevor H, University of New South Wales
local.contributor.affiliationHawkins, Stuart, College of Asia and the Pacific, ANU
local.contributor.affiliationBedford, Stuart, College of Asia and the Pacific, ANU
local.contributor.affiliationSpriggs, Matthew, College of Arts and Social Sciences, ANU
local.description.embargo2037-12-31
local.bibliographicCitation.issue35
local.bibliographicCitation.startpage15512
local.bibliographicCitation.lastpage15516
local.identifier.doi10.1073/pnas.1005780107
local.identifier.absseo970121 - Expanding Knowledge in History and Archaeology
local.identifier.absseo970106 - Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences
dc.date.updated2016-02-24T08:27:24Z
local.identifier.scopusID2-s2.0-77957266534
local.identifier.thomsonID000281468500041
CollectionsANU Research Publications

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