Australian Museum Journal Marsupial fossils from Wellington Caves, New South Wales; the historic and scientific significance of the collections in the Australian Museum, Sydney

Shortform:
Dawson, 1985, Rec. Aust. Mus. 37(2): 55–69
Author(s):
Dawson, Lyndall
Year published:
1985
Title:
Marsupial fossils from Wellington Caves, New South Wales; the historic and scientific significance of the collections in the Australian Museum, Sydney
Serial title:
Records of the Australian Museum
Volume:
37
Issue:
2
Start page:
55
End page:
69
DOI:
10.3853/j.0067-1975.37.1985.335
Language:
English
Date published:
01 August 1985
Cover date:
01 August 1985
ISSN:
0067-1975
CODEN:
RAUMAJ
Publisher:
The Australian Museum
Place published:
Sydney, Australia
Subjects:
MAMMALIA; MAMMALIA: MARSUPIALIA; FOSSIL; AUSTRALIAN MUSEUM
Digitized:
09 January 2009
Available online:
02 March 2009
Reference number:
335
EndNote package:
EndNote file
Title page:
Title page (139kb PDF)
Complete work:
Complete work (2383kb PDF)

Abstract

Since 1830, fossil vertebrates, particularly marsupials, have been collected from Wellington Caves, New South Wales. The history of these collections, and particularly of the collection housed in the Australian Museum, Sydney, is reviewed in this paper. A revised faunal list of marsupials from Wellington Caves is included, based on specimens in museum collections. The provenance of these specimens is discussed. The list comprises 58 species, of which 30 are extinct throughout Australia, and a further 12 no longer inhabit the Wellington region. The deposit also contains bones of reptiles, birds, bats, rodents and monotremes. On the basis of faunal correlation and some consideration of taphonomy in the deposits, the age range of the fossils represented in the museum collections is suggested to be from the late Pliocene to late Pleistocene (with a possible minimum age of 40,000 years BP). Data from new collections indicate that at least three distinct periods of deposition are represented in the cave system.