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Fossils belonging to eight different animal species found in SW Turkey

Fossils belonging to eight different animal species found in SW Turkey

A team of paleoanthropologists, paleontologists and geologists from universities in Ege, Pamukkale and Hitit conducted a surface survey in the southwestern province of Denizli under the coordination of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. During the survey conducted under the leadership of Ahmet Ihsan Aytek, a faculty member at the Department of Anthropology, Faculty of Science and Letters at Mehmet Akif Ersoy University (MAKÜ), eight fossils of different mammal species estimated to have lived between 1.2 million and 9 million years ago were found.

In addition to the fossils of a pig, hyena, giraffe, horse, gazelle and a mammoth from the Pleistocene period dating back 1.2 million years found in Merkezefendi district, fossils of an elephant and anteater from the Miocene period dating back 9 million to 7 million years were identified in the Tavas and Beyağaç districts of the city.

Speaking to Anadolu Agency (AA), Aytek said that they found fossils belonging to many animals in the surveys they have been conducting with a multidisciplinary team since 2017 in Denizli and that the survey in 2020 marks their fourth survey season.

Pointing out that they are trying to research the ancient fauna of the region by exploring new areas in known regions, he said: “Two years ago, we discovered a new site in Tavas. This was the first time we announced the existence of various fossils in this place. In this year’s study, we identified four new species that were previously unknown here.