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Paracamelus is an extinct genus of camel in the family Camelidae, Originating in North America during the Mid Miocene, but, after crossing over the Beringian land bridge during the late Miocene, approximately 7.5-6.5 Ma., it ranged from Spain to Chad and Shanxi Province, China. It is ancestral to living camels of the genus Camelus.[citation needed] A population survived in northern North America; called the high Arctic camel, this survived until the Mid Pleistocene approximately 1 Ma.[3]

Temporal range: Middle Miocene–Pleistocene
(descendant taxon Camelus survives to present)
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Artiodactyla
Family: Camelidae
Tribe: Camelini
Genus: Paracamelus
Schlosser, 1903[1]
Type species
Paracamelus gigas
Schlosser, 1903



Paracamelus was named by Schlosser (1903). Its type is Paracamelus gigas. It was assigned to Camelidae by Carroll (1988).[4]

Fossil distributionEdit

The earliest fossil of Paracamelus is from the mid Miocene Esmeralda Formation in Nye County Nevada and is between 10-12.5 million years in age.[5] After a sea level transgression event, the genus spread to Eurasia arriving in Spain and Italy just prior to the Messinian Salinity Crisis at approximately 6 Ma,[6] before Spreading to Africa around the Miocene-Pliocene boundary.[7]


  1. ^ Schlosser, Max (1903). "Die fossilen Säugethiere Chinas nebst einer Odontographie der recenten Antilopen". Abhandlungen der Mathematisch-Physikalischen Klasse der Königlich Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften. 22 (1): 95–97; Pl. 9, Fig. 14, 26 
  2. ^ Logvynenko, V. M. (2001). "Paracamels minor (Camelidae, Tylopoda) — A New Camelid Species from the Middle Pliocene of Ukraine" (PDF). Vestnik zoologii. 35 (1): 39–42. 
  3. ^ PaleoBiology Database: Paracamelus, basic info
  4. ^ R. L. Carroll. 1988. Vertebrate Paleontology and Evolution. W. H. Freeman and Company, New York 1-698
  5. ^ Stidham, Thomas A.; Zelenkov, Nikita V. (2016). "North American–Asian aquatic bird dispersal in the Miocene: evidence from a new species of diving duck (Anseriformes: Anatidae) from North America (Nevada) with affinities to Mongolian taxa". Alcheringa: An Australasian Journal of Palaeontology. 41 (2): 222–230. doi:10.1080/03115518.2016.1224439. ISSN 0311-5518. 
  6. ^ Colombero, Simone; Bonelli, Edmondo; Pavia, Marco; Repetto, Giovanni; Carnevale, Giorgio (2016). "Paracamelus (Mammalia, Camelidae) remains from the late Messinian of Italy: insights into the last camels of western Europe". Historical Biology. 29 (4): 509–518. doi:10.1080/08912963.2016.1206539. ISSN 0891-2963. 
  7. ^ Likius, Andossa; Brunet, Michel; Geraads, Denis; Vignaud, Patrick (2003). "The oldest Camelidae (Mammalia, Artiodactyla) of Africa : new finds from the Mio-Pliocene boundary, Chad". Bulletin de la Societe Geologique de France. 174 (2): 187–193. doi:10.2113/174.2.187. ISSN 0037-9409. 

Further readingEdit