Fragmenta Palaeontologica Hungarica

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Author(s): Meszoely, Ch. A. M., Venczel, M. & Gasparik, M.
Title: Fossil snakes from the Late Pleistocene of Tokod (Gerecse Mountains, Hungary)
Year: 2005
Volume: 23
Pages: 1-4.

Abstract: An impressive array of Late Pleistocene Vertebrate fossil bones has been excavated and described from Tokod, Hungary (Gasparik 1993). Most of the bones of the reptiles are very small, fragmentary skull elements, ribs and vertebrae. So far more than sixty species of vertebrates, among them at least eight genera of reptiles and amphibians have been recognized. Among the reptiles, four genera of snakes have been identified on basis of the morphology of the basiparasphenoid bone or vertebrae. All four of these snake genera: Coluber, Coronella, Natrix, and Vipera still occur in Hungary today. Due to the fragmentary nature of the fossil material, positive identification as to the species is not possible at this time and the four snake species are tentatively referred to the modern species found in Hungary: Coluber caspius, Coronella austriaca, Natrix natrix, and Vipera berus. The positive identification of these four snake genera in the Tokod Late Pleistocene fossil assemblage not only expands its faunal list, but because of the specific habitat requirement of these snakes, it provides some palaeoecological information about the environment of the Tokod fossil locality.
Keywords: Late Pleistocene, mosaic vegetation, Vipera, Natrix, Coluber, Coronella

Journal: Fragmenta Palaeontologica Hungarica
Journal abbreviation: Fragm. Palaeont. Hung.
ISSN: 1586-930X
Publisher: Hungarian Natural History Museum, Budapest
Editor(s): Szabó, J. & Matskási, I.