Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-55b6f6c457-xklcj Total loading time: 0.18 Render date: 2021-09-28T17:44:22.143Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": true, "newCiteModal": false, "newCitedByModal": true, "newEcommerce": true, "newUsageEvents": true }

Article contents

Tale of two rhinos: isotopic ecology, paleodiet, and niche differentiation of Aphelops and Teleoceras from the Florida Neogene

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 May 2016

Bruce J. MacFadden*
Affiliation:
Florida Museum of Natural History, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida 32611. E-mail: bmacfadd@flmnh.ufl.edu

Abstract

Carbon (δ13C) and oxygen (δ18O) isotopic results are presented from 42 tooth enamel carbonate samples of rhinos (Family Rhinocerotidae) from a sequence of Florida Neogene localities between 9.5 and 4.5 Ma. These data are used to interpret ancient diets and test previous hypotheses of terrestrial/aquatic adaptations of two sympatric rhinos, Aphelops and Teleoceras. The long-limbed, shorter-crowned Aphelops traditionally has been reconstructed as an open-country browser (similar to the modern black rhino), whereas short-limbed, higher-crowned Teleoceras traditionally has been reconstructed as an amphibious grazer (similar to the modern hippo). Between about 9. 5 and 7 Ma the δ13C values (all <−11.0‰) from Florida Aphelops and Teleoceras indicate that both rhinos were feeding on C3 plants. This diet probably included a combination of browse and C3 grasses, although the exact proportions for each genus cannot be distinguished isotopically. In contrast, after the late Miocene global carbon shift as represented at 4.5 Ma in Florida, Aphelops was a browser (mean δ13C = −11.9‰), whereas Teleoceras was a mixed feeder/C4 grazer (mean δ13C = −7.0‰). Oxygen isotopic values indicate that neither Aphelops nor Teleoceras was principally aquatic. Given these new isotopic data, more plausible modern analogs for these two extinct rhinos are, respectively, the terrestrial browsing black rhino (Diceros bicornis) and the terrestrial grazing white rhino (Ceratotherium simum), which are sympatric today in Africa.

Type
Articles
Copyright
Copyright © The Paleontological Society 

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Bocherens, H., Koch, P. L., Mariotti, A., Geraads, D., and Jaeger, J-J. 1996. Isotopic biogeochemistry (13C, 18O) of mammalian enamel from African Pleistocene hominid sites. Palaios 11: 306318.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bryant, J. D. and Froelich, P. N. 1995. A model of oxygen isotope fractionation in body water of large mammals. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 59: 45234537.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bryant, J. D., Luz, B., and Froelich, P. N. 1994. Oxygen isotopic composition of fossil horse tooth phosphate as a record of continental paleoclimate. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 107: 303316.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bryant, J. D., Froelich, P. N., Showers, W. J., and Genna, B. J. 1996. A tale of two quarries: biologic and taphonomic signatures in the oxygen isotope composition of tooth enamel phosphate from modern and Miocene equids. Palaios 11: 397408.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bryant, J. D., Koch, P. L., Froelich, P. N., Showers, W. J., and Genna, B. J. 1996. Oxygen isotope partitioning between phosphate and carbonate in modern and fossil mammalian apatite. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, Abstracts of Papers 16: 24A.Google Scholar
Cerling, T. E. 1992. Development of grasslands and savannas in East Africa during the Neogene. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology (Global and Planetary Change Section) 97: 241247.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Cerling, T. E. and Sharp, Z. 1996. Stable carbon and oxygen isotope analysis of fossil tooth enamel using laser ablation. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 126: 173186.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Cerling, T. E., Wang, Y., and Quade, J. 1993. Global ecological change in the late Miocene: expansion of C4 ecosystems. Nature 361: 344345.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fishbein, S. 1976. Our continent: a natural history of North America. National Geographic Society, Washington, D.C.Google Scholar
Hulbert, R. C. Jr. 1992. A checklist of the fossil vertebrates of Florida. Papers in Florida Paleontology 6: 135.Google Scholar
Janis, C. 1982. Evolution of horns in ungulates: ecology and paleoecology. Biological Reviews 57: 261316.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Jarman, P. 1974. The social organisation of the antelope in relation to their ecology. Behaviour 48: 213267.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Koch, P. L., Zachos, J. C., and Gingerich, P. D. 1992. Correlation between isotope records in marine and continental carbon resevoirs near the Palaeocene/Eocene boundary. Nature 358: 319322.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kohn, M. J. 1996. Predicting animal δ18O: accounting for diet and physiological adaptation. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 60: 48114829.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lee-Thorp, J. and van der Merwe, N. J. 1987. Carbon isotope analysis of fossil bone apatite. South African Journal of Science 83: 712715.Google Scholar
MacFadden, B. J. 1992. Fossil horses: systematics, paleobiology, and evolution of the Family Equidae. Cambridge University Press, New York.Google Scholar
MacFadden, B. J. 1997. Origin and evolution of the grazing guild in New World terrestrial mammals. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 12: 182186.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
MacFadden, B. J. and Cerling, T. E. 1996. Mammalian herbivore communities, ancient feeding ecology, and carbon isotopes: a 10 million-year sequence from the Neogene of Florida. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 16: 103115.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
MacFadden, B. J. and Hulbert, R. C. Jr. 1990. Body size estimates and size distribution of ungulate mammals from the late Miocene Love Bone Bed of Florida. Pp. 337363. Damuth, J., MacFadden, B. J.Body size in mammalian paleobiology: estimation and biological implications. Cambridge University Press, New York.Google Scholar
MacFadden, B. J. and Shockey, B. J. 1997. Feeding ecology and niche differentiation of Pleistocene mammalian herbivores from Tarija, Bolivia: morphological and isotopic evidence. Paleobiology 23: 77100.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
MacFadden, B. J., Cerling, T. E., and Prado, J. 1996. Cenozoic terrestrial ecosystem evolution in Argentina: evidence from carbon isotopes of fossil mammal teeth. Palaios 11: 319327.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Matthew, W. D. 1932. A review of the rhinoceroses with a description of Aphelops [sic.] material from the Pliocene of Texas. University of California Publications, Bulletin of the Department of Geological Sciences 20: 411480.Google Scholar
McCrea, J. M. 1950. On the isotopic chemistry of carbonates and a paleotemperature scale. Journal of Chemical Physics 18: 849857.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Osborn, H. F. 1910. The age of mammals. Macmillan, New York.Google Scholar
Owen-Smith, R. N. 1988. Megaherbivores: the influence of very large body size on ecology. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Prothero, D. R. 1992. Fifty million years of rhinoceros evolution. Pp. 8291. Ryder, O. A.Rhinoceros biology and conservation Zoological Society, San Diego.Google Scholar
Prothero, D. R., Guérin, C., and Manning, E. 1989. The history of the Rhinoceratoidea. Pp. 320340. Prothero, D. R., Schoch, R. M.The evolution of perissodactyls. Oxford University Press, New York.Google Scholar
Quade, J., Cerling, T. E., Barry, J. C., Morgan, M. E., Pilbeam, D. R., Chivas, A. R., Lee-Thorp, J. A., and van der Merwe, N. J. 1992. A 16-Ma record of paleodiet using carbon and oxygen isotopes in fossil teeth from Pakistan. Chemical Geology (Isotope Geosceince Section) 94: 183192.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Scott, W. B. 1913. A history of land mammals in the western hemisphere. Macmillan, New York.Google Scholar
Voorhies, M. R. 1981. Dwarfing the St. Helens eruption: ancient ashfall creates a Pompeii of prehistoric animals. National Geographic 159: 6675.Google Scholar
Voorhies, M. R. and Thomasson, J. R. 1979. Fossil grass anthoecia with Miocene Rhinoceros [sic.] skeletons: diet of an extinct species. Science 206: 331333.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Webb, S. D. 1977. A history of savanna vertebrates in the New World, Part I. North America. Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics 8: 355380.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Webb, S. D. 1983. The rise and fall of the late Miocene ungulate fauna in North America. Pp. 267306. Nitecki, M. H.Coevolution. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.Google Scholar
Webb, S. D., MacFadden, B. J., and Baskin, J. A. 1981. Geology and paleontology of the Love Bone Bed from the late Miocene of Florida. American Journal of Science 281: 513544.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Send article to Kindle

To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Tale of two rhinos: isotopic ecology, paleodiet, and niche differentiation of Aphelops and Teleoceras from the Florida Neogene
Available formats
×

Send article to Dropbox

To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

Tale of two rhinos: isotopic ecology, paleodiet, and niche differentiation of Aphelops and Teleoceras from the Florida Neogene
Available formats
×

Send article to Google Drive

To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

Tale of two rhinos: isotopic ecology, paleodiet, and niche differentiation of Aphelops and Teleoceras from the Florida Neogene
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *