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Characoid fish teeth from Miocene deposits in the Cuenca Basin, Ecuador

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Abstract

Miocene deposits from the Cuenca Basin in the Ecuadorean Andes (elevation 2360 to 2920m) yield teeth belonging to four of the 12 neotropical familes of characoid fishes: Erythrinidae, Characidae, Anostomidae, and Parodontidae. Previous characoid fossil records exist only for Characidae and Curimatidae. The erythrinid teeth are indistinguishable from those of Hoplias. Except for one tooth which belongs to Myleinae, the characid teeth are similar to those in many small to moderately large living members of the Tetra-gonopterinae. The anostomid jaw teeth belong to Leporinus. Pharyngeal teeth of typical anostomid appearance are referred to Leporinus. The parodontid teeth cannot be identified to genus with certainty but may belong to Parodon. Parodontidae indicate a mountain stream habitat.

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Ancillary