Skip to main content

Faunal relationships and zoogeographical affinities of mammals in north-west Africa

Buy Article:

$51.00 plus tax (Refund Policy)



The nonmarine mammal fauna of the Maghreb region of north-west Africa is related to that from three potential source areas: the northern Palaearctic (Europe and south-west Asia; here referred to as the European fauna), subsaharan Africa (the African fauna) and the arid Palaearctic (Sahara Desert: the desert fauna).

On the basis of geographical distribution patterns, this fauna divisible into two groups: the bats, whose affinities are most closely related to southern Europe and south-west Asia, and nonflying species, most closely related to subsaharan Africa but with an appreciable northern Palaearctic element. These affinities are even more pronounced if desert fauna are removed from the analysis.

The nonflying European fauna probably colonized via south-west Asia and north Africa, rather than direct from western Europe.

The results demonstrate that terrestrial habitat barriers are less of an impediment to dispersal, for all mammals except bats, than even narrow stretches of water.

The fauna of the Maghreb may be undergoing faunal relaxation, following immigration from tropical Africa and south-west Asia during mesic phases in the Late Pleistocene and early Holocene.

Keywords: Holocene; Maghreb; Mammals; colonization; dispersal

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Environmental and Geographical Sciences, Manchester Metropolitan University, John Dalton Building, Chester Street, Manchester, M1 5 GD, U.K.

Publication date: 2000-03-01

  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more