Emine-Bair-Khosar Cave in the Crimea, a huge bone accumulation of Late Pleistocene fauna
MetadataShow full item record
The Crimean Mountains are well known for the abundance of Middle and Late Palaeolithic sites and palaeontological remains recovered from cultural layers in caves and rock shelters. The fossil-bearing deposits of Emine-Bair-Khosar Cave, located at the elevation of 1000 m on the Chatyrdag Plateau, yielded very diverse and numerous vertebrate remains that widen the knowledge of Late Pleistocene faunal diversity in the Crimea. The assemblage comprised in total almost 50 species of vertebrates. Studies included geomorphological, geological and stratigraphic analyses as well AMS 14C dating. Faunal remains were present in ten palaeontological sites. The main bone accumulation (section Ba2) was deposited during Middle Valdai or Vytachiv (MIS 3) interstadial, and including a long time gap, to the end of the Pleistocene and the Holocene. Comparison of the Emine-Bair-Khosar fauna with vertebrate faunas of other Crimean sites showed remarkable stability in the faunal composition and frequency during the whole MIS 3 interstadial. Steppe and other open-country species dominated in the compared assemblages, while boreal-tundra species were far less numerous. Inhabitants of forests, including red deer and some rodents, were stable members of fossil assemblages.