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Taxonomic status of Wiedomys marplatensis, an enigmatic fossil cricetid (Rodentia, Sigmodontinae): neither Wiedomys nor Wiedomyini

  • Ulyses F.J. Pardiñas EMAIL logo and Franck Barbière
From the journal Mammalia


The generic placement and tribal affiliation of Wiedomys marplatensis Quintana, 2002 are revised based on the study of its holotype and a single known remains from San Andrés Formation (Early Pleistocene; Buenos Aires Province, Argentina). The anatomical traits selected as indicators belonging to Wiedomys Hershkovitz, 1959 are interpreted here as general similarities. Wiedomys marplatensis is removed from Wiedomys and is considered as a junior synonym of Cholomys pearsoni Reig, 1980. The affiliation of the latter to Wiedomyini is discussed and the alternative hypothesis to allocate Cholomys Reig, 1980 in Oryzomyini is advanced. Although further research and more fossils are necessary to solve this issue, the placement of Cholomys as Sigmodontinae incertae sedis and the avoidance of using it as a point of calibration in molecular phylogenies are suggested.


We studied the discussed fossils along many years and visits to MACN and MMP repositories; we are indebted for hospitality and free access to the curators A. Ramos and A. Kramarz (MACN) and A. Dondas, T. Scaglia, L. Scaglia and M. Taglioretti (MMP). Loans of Wiedomys were kindly authorized by J. Oliveira, curator of Museu Nacional (Rio de Janeiro, Brasil); C. Cañón helped us with photographs of Wiedomys recently obtained in the MN. Funds for this research are those of PICT (Agencia) 2014-1039 (to UFJP). We want to express our gratitude to the above-mentioned persons and institutions and also to the associate editor F. Catzeflis and the two anonymous reviewers that largely improved the manuscript. This is GEMA (Grupo de Estudios de Mamíferos Australes) contribution #20.


Appendix 1: Specimens studied in this contribution belong to the following collections: Colección de Mamíferos del Centro Nacional Patagónico (CNP; Chubut, Argentina); Colección de Material de Egagrópilas y Afines “Elio Massoia,” Centro Nacional Patagónico (CNP-E; Chubut, Argentina); Colección Nacional de Paleontología Vertebrados, Museo Argentino de Ciencias Naturales “Bernardino Rivadavia” (MACN; Buenos Aires, Argentina); Museo Municipal de Ciencias Naturales y Tradicional de Mar del Plata “Lorenzo Scaglia” (MMP-M; Mar del Plata, Buenos Aires, Argentina); Museu Nacional (MN; Rio de Janeiro, Brasil).

Cholomys pearsoni.– MMP M-869 (holotype), incomplete right lower jaw; Baliza San Andrés, Buenos Aires, Argentina, Vorohué Formation.

Wiedomys marplatensis.– MACN 19697 (holotype), incomplete left lower jaw; Playa Santa Isabel, Buenos Aires, Argentina, San Andrés Formation.

Wiedomyspyrrhorhinos. – CNP 3643, CNP 4728, Sítio Marimbondo, Caruaru, Pernambuco, Brasil; MN 68601, Riacho da Ressaca, Piripá, Bahia, Brasil; MN 71607, MN 71608, Parque Nacional da Chapada Diamantina, Salinas, Morro do Chapéu, Bahia, Brasil; MN 73419, Berilo, Minas Gerais, Brasil; MN 73520, Usina Hidroelétrica Irapé, Berilo, Minas Gerais, Brasil.

Wilfredomys oenax.– CNP 2378, CNP 2379, Cerro Colorado, Soriano, Uruguay.

Appendix 2: Revised suprageneric framework, geographical and chronological distribution for the cricetid rodents discussed in this paper.

Order Rodentia

Family Cricetidae

Subfamily Sigmodontinae

Sigmodontinae incertae sedis

Genus Cholomys Reig, 1980

Cholomys pearsoni Reig, 1980

Cholomys pearsoni Reig, 1980: 266; holotype: MMP M-869, incomplete right lower jaw with incisor and m1-3.

Wiedomys marplatensis Quintana, 2002: 271; holotype: MACN 19697, incomplete left lower jaw with m2-3.

Geographical distribution: Atlantic slopes near Mar del Plata, Buenos Aires Province, Argentina.

Stratigraphical and chronological distribution: Vorohué and San Andrés Formations; Late Pliocene-Early Pleistocene.

Tribe Wiedomyini Reig, 1980

Type genus: Wiedomys Hershkovitz, 1959 (by original designation).

Included genera (arranged in alphabetic order): Phaenomys Thomas, 1917, Wiedomys Hershkovitz, 1959 and Wilfredomys Avila-Pires, 1960.

Geographical distribution: Eastern Brazil and northern Uruguay.

Chronological distribution: Late Pleistocene-Holocene (for Wiedomys in Brazil)-Recent.


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Supplemental Material:

The online version of this article (DOI: offers supplementary material.

Received: 2016-7-22
Accepted: 2016-11-29
Published Online: 2017-2-11
Published in Print: 2017-12-20

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