The Middle Miocene site of Fort Ternan is of unusual interest to paleoanthropologists because the fauna includes hominoid species and because the assemblage is an excellent subject for paleoecological reconstruction. Despite this, recent researchers (Andrews & Nesbit Evans, Pickford, and Shipman) have reached widely different conclusions about the habitat(s) sampled by the Fort Ternan fauna; their reconstructions run the gamut from open to closed habitats. These recent studies are here reviewed: their methodologies are evaluated and possible sources of error identified. It is concluded that the most probable interpretation is that the Fort Ternan paleoenvironment was predominantly open country, with a forested area nearby but at sufficient distance to be poorly represented in the fauna.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics