Aivaliki (Pleistocene of Greece)

Where: Macedonia, Greece (41.0° N, 24.0° E: paleocoordinates 40.9° N, 24.0° E)

• coordinate estimated from map

When: Early/Lower Pleistocene (2.6 - 0.8 Ma)

Environment/lithology: "floodplain"; gray, green, yellow, silty, carbonaceous claystone

• The peculiarity of this inhomogeneous sedimentation seems to be a result of rhythmic deposition of thin layers of coarse and fine grained material in a flood plain in basins in-between the southern spurs of the Rhodope Massif. An area influenced by river activity and in part with shallow water.
• The sediment directly adherent to the surface of the fossil bones is a rather inhomogeneous and poorly sorted deposit. At a first glance it looks like a compact and uniform finegrained matrix. In fact, it is a heterogeneous mixture of minor amounts of completely unsorted mm-sized grains (sub-rounded to angular quartz and local rock fragments) set in a matrix of fine silt and clay. The colour is greenish grey to yellowish, depending on the stage of oxidation. The general mineral composition of the dominating finegrained part of the sediment is characterized by:

•Calcite (CaCO3): about 50-60%

•Chlorite (clinochlore) ([Mg,Fe,Al]3 [(OH)2/AlSi3O10]. Mg3(OH)6): about 20-30%

•Quartz (SiO2) and Biotite (mainly chloritized): about 1-5%

•Mineral composition and chemistry classify the sediment as carbonate rich silty clay (marl). Remarkable are small brownish to black dendriditic formations (Fe-and Mnoxihydrates), typical for weak diagenetic processes. The enrichment zones are close to the surface of the embedded fossil bones. In addition, small nodular phosphate concretions (dahllite: carbonate-hydroxyapatite) were formed by secondary processes nearby or even on the bone fragments. The fine grained sediment is typical for a shallow-water deposit or flood plain deposit. The much less abundant coarse grained part of the matrix sediment consists mainly of debris of quartz (vein quartz), feldspar, mica flakes, in part oxidized ore (hematite, pyrite, magnetite), and of fragments of local rocks (quartzite, gneiss and mica schists). Given the shape and low degree of roundness (sphericity) of fragments the distance to the source area cannot be very far. The only possible source material close enough for discussion is the pre-Mesozoic Rhodope Chrystalline –either in shortest distance from the Pangeon/Simvolon Mountains in the South or, assuming a former exposure, with more probability from the North, from the Menikion or Phalakron Area. The available rocks from both sides are mainly marble, quartzites, gneisses, mica schists, amphibolites as well as granites and granodiorites.

Size class: macrofossils

• The material from the locality of Aivaliki, near Alistrati, is stored in the collections of the Museum of Palaeontology and Geology of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (AMPG). It comprises three specimens of a fragmentary adult mandible (AMPG: AVL-1, 2, 3) that probably belong to the same individual and the right side of a juvenile mandible (AMPG: AVL-4).

Preservation: replaced with calcite, replaced with silica, replaced with other

Collected by N. Symeonidis, R. Seemann , V. Giannopoulos, S. Giannopoulou and N. Diafas in 25-30 August 2003; reposited in the AMPG

Primary reference: N. Symeonidis, I. Giaourtsakis, R. Seemann and V. Giannopoulos. 2006. Aivaliki, a New Locality with Fossil Rhinoceroses near Alistrati (Serres, Greece) . Beiträge zur Paläontologie 30:437-451 [E. Vlachos/P. Kampouridis]more details

Purpose of describing collection: taxonomic analysis

PaleoDB collection 195881: authorized by Evangelos Vlachos, entered by Panagiotis Kampouridis on 29.08.2018

Creative Commons license: CC BY (attribution)

Taxonomic list

 Perissodactyla - Rhinocerotidae
Stephanorhinus cf. etruscus Falconer 1868 rhinoceros