Following are selected research papers co-authored by paleobotanist Bonnie Jacobs of the Environmental Science Program at Southern Methodist University
on discoveries in Ethiopia of fauna believed to be 27-28
million years old.
Oligocene mammals from Ethiopia and
faunal exchange between Afro-Arabia and Eurasia
(Nature - 4 December 2003)
Afro-Arabian mammalian communities underwent a
marked transition near the Oligocene/Miocene
boundary at approximately 24 million years ago.
Although it is well documented that the endemic
paenungulate taxa were replaced by migrants from the
Northern Hemisphere, the timing and evolutionary
dynamics of this transition have long been a mystery
because faunas from about 32 to 24 million years ago
are largely unknown. Here we report a late Oligocene
fossil assemblage from Ethiopia, which constrains
the migration to postdate 27 million years ago, and
yields new insight into the indigenous faunal
dynamics that preceded this event.