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Michael Archer

Michael Archer
UNSW Sydney | UNSW · School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences (BEES)

PhD

About

331
Publications
127,395
Reads
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7,939
Citations
Citations since 2016
72 Research Items
2773 Citations
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20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500600
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500600
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500600
Introduction
Mike Archer was born in Sydney but grew up in Appalachia, USA. After graduating from Princeton Univ. & PhD from Univ of Western Australia, he became Curator of Mammals at the Queensland Museum, Lecturer in the University of NSW, Director of the Australian Museum in Sydney, Dean of Science at the University of NSW and now Prof. & member of the PANGEA Research Centre at UNSW. 315+ scientific books & publications from 1971: http://www.pangea.unsw.edu.au/people/academic-research/michael-archer.
Additional affiliations
January 1994 - December 2012
UNSW Sydney
January 1978 - present
UNSW Sydney
January 1978 - present
University of South Wales
Position
  • Professor (Full)
Description
  • Prof. Mike Archer Biological, Earth & Environmental Sciences University of New South Wales Sydney NSW 2052 AUSTRALIA m.archer@unsw.edu.au

Publications

Publications (331)
Article
Full-text available
A large fossil anserine-like anatid (Aves, Anatidae, Notochen bannockburnensis gen. et sp. nov.) is described based on a distal humerus from the lower Bannockburn Formation, early Miocene (19–16 Ma), St Bathans Fauna from New Zealand. Its morphology and size suggest that this taxon represents an early swan rather than a goose. Extant anserines are...
Article
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Two new neoavian landbirds are reported from the early Miocene St Bathans Fauna from New Zealand. Aegotheles zealandivetus sp. nov. is described from several bones, among which, notably, the tarsometatarsus shows more similarity to New Guinean taxa than to Australian—New Zealand species. Zealandornis relictus gen. et sp. nov. is described from a di...
Article
Two new species of the fossil macropodiform genus Gumardee are described that provide insights into the evolution of early kangaroos. Gumardee has a continuous record from the late Oligocene to the early Miocene and is likely to have become extinct before the middle Miocene. The two new species are the most derived members of the genus. They exhibi...
Article
The St Bathans Fauna is a highly diverse non-marine vertebrate assemblage derived from the lower Miocene (19–16 Ma) Bannockburn Formation exposed in Central Otago, New Zealand. Deposited in palaeolake Manuherikia, remains of waterfowl dominate the avian assemblage, which, with eight known species in four genera, is one of the more diverse globally....
Article
Full-text available
Understanding feeding ecology of extinct kangaroos is fundamental to understanding the evolution of kangaroos and the Australia paleoenvironment during the Oligo-Miocene. Comparisons with extant species have suggested that the macropodiforms of the Oligo/Miocene (kangaroos and allies) from the Riversleigh World Heritage Area, northern Australia, we...
Article
The extinction of large-bodied terrestrial ‘megafauna’ during earlier phases of the Quaternary had a significant impact on the transforming structure of ecosystems. However, the causes of such losses remains difficult to determine in part because of a paucity of reliable geochronological information about the taxa involved. This is especially true...
Article
Full-text available
Sheath-tailed bats (Family Emballonuridae) from the early Pleistocene Rackham’s Roost Site cave deposit in the Riversleigh World Heritage Area, north-western Queensland are the oldest recorded occurrence for the family in Australia. The fossil remains consist of maxillary and dentary fragments, as well as isolated teeth, but until now their precise...
Article
Little is known about how the large brains of mammals are accommodated into the dazzling diversity of their skulls. It has been suggested that brain shape is influenced by relative brain size, that it evolves or develops according to extrinsic or intrinsic mechanical constraints, and that its shape can provide insights into its proportions and func...
Article
Full-text available
Taxonomy is the science of the classification of living things and comprises two main processes, defining taxa and naming them. In relation to the taxonomy of the Dingo, the scientific name has been unstable for many years. It has been referred to as Canis familiaris, Canis familiaris dingo, Canis lupus familiaris, Canis lupus dingo or Canis dingo....
Preprint
Full-text available
Little is known about how the large brains of mammals are accommodated into the dazzling diversity of their skulls. It has been suggested that brain shape is influenced by relative brain size, that it evolves or develops according to extrinsic or intrinsic mechanical constraints, and that its shape can provide insights into its proportions and func...
Article
Current paleontological techniques to separate vertebrate fossils from encasing iron‐rich cements by chemical means are limited by the low solubility of common iron(III) hydroxide oxides such as hematite and goethite. This study examines novel geochemical extractions capable of selectively dissolving iron(III) hydroxide oxides, in aqueous solutions...
Article
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We describe the partial cranium and skeleton of a new diprotodontian marsupial from the late Oligocene (~26–25 Ma) Namba Formation of South Australia. This is one of the oldest Australian marsupial fossils known from an associated skeleton and it reveals previously unsuspected morphological diversity within Vombatiformes, the clade that includes wo...
Article
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Morphological shifts observed in the fossil record of a lineage potentially indicate concomitant shifts in ecology of that lineage. Mekosuchine crocodiles of Cenozoic Australia display departures from the typical eusuchian body-plan both in the cranium and postcranium. Previous qualitative studies have suggested that these crocodiles had a more ter...
Article
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Morphological similarity between biological structures in phylogenetically distant species is usually regarded as evidence of convergent evolution. Yet, phenotypic similarity is not always a sign of natural selection acting on a particular trait, therefore adaptation to similar conditions may fail to generate convergent lineages. Herein we tested w...
Article
Full-text available
The domestic cat-sized marsupial lion Priscileo roskellyae (Thylacoleonidae) from the Oligocene–Miocene of Australia was originally allocated to the genus Priscileo Rauscher, 1987, on the basis of its plesiomorphic upper dental formula of three premolars and four molars and its relatively small size. Recent reassignment of the Priscileo type specie...
Article
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The fossil record provides important information about changes in species diversity, distribution, habitat and abundance through time. As we understand more about these changes, it becomes possible to envisage a wider range of options for translocations in a world where sustainability of habitats is under increasing threat. The Critically Endangere...
Article
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Insular avifaunas have repeatedly spawned evolutionary novelties in the form of unusually large, often flightless species. We report fossils from the Early Miocene St Bathans Fauna of New Zealand that attests to the former existence of a giant psittaciform, which is described as a new genus and species. The fossils are two incomplete tibiotarsi fro...
Article
The Egerniinae (formerly the Egernia group) is a morphologically diverse clade of skinks comprising 61 extant species from eight genera, spread across Australia, New Guinea, and the Solomon Islands. The relatively large size and robustness of many egerniines has meant that they fossilize more readily than other Australian skinks and have been more...
Article
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The platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) is one of the world's most evolutionarily distinct mammals, one of five extant species of egg-laying mammals, and the only living species within the family Ornithorhynchidae. Modern platypuses are endemic to eastern mainland Australia, Tasmania, and adjacent King Island, with a small introduced population on...
Article
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Climate change, overconsumption, land‐use intensification, widespread pollution, and other environmentally damaging factors are threatening Earth's biodiversity and its ability to provide ecosystem services essential for human survival. Article impact statement: Wallach et al.’s framing of compassionate conservation is flawed and impractical and co...
Article
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The nature and duration of the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) in Australia are poorly understood, with little regional agreement on the timing and direction of LGM climate changes. One reason for this is that Australian Late Pleistocene terrestrial sediments typically are both sparse and inorganic, inhibiting the development of detailed radiocarbon chr...
Article
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The analysis of regional scale patterns of diversity allows insights into the processes that have shaped modern biodiversity at the macro‐scale. Previous analyses studying biogeographic regionalisation across different high‐level taxa have shown similar trends at a global scale. However, incorporating phylogenetic methods when comparing biogeograph...
Article
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Background The Mountain Pygmy-possum ( Burramys parvus ) is a critically endangered marsupial, endemic to alpine regions of southern Australia. We investigated the diet of a recently discovered population of the possum in northern Kosciuszko National Park, NSW, Australia. This new population occurs at elevations well below the once-presumed lower e...
Article
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Quail-thrushes (Passeriformes: Cinclosomatidae: Cinclosoma) are ground-dwelling corvoid songbirds endemic to Australia and New Guinea. Until now, the only known quail-thrush fossils have been from late Quaternary cave deposits in Australia. A new species of quail-thrush, Cinclosoma elachum sp. nov., is described from the early to middle Miocene dep...
Article
Full-text available
Background For the past 32 years, we have polled first-year biology students annually at the University of New South Wales concerning their views about evolution and creationism. The purposes of the research were to identify the level of commitment among incoming students to creationist beliefs that could interfere with their receptivity to evoluti...
Article
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New World bats represent over one third of global bat species and encompass the widest adaptive radiation among bats. Modern bat diversity in the Americas resulted from a mixture of migrations and colonisations of different taxa throughout the Cenozoic. Traditionally, these taxa are conceived as either South or North American, based on the location...
Article
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While known for over a decade to exist, fossil rails of the early Miocene (19–16 Ma) St Bathans Fauna, from the South Island of New Zealand, have not previously been described taxonomically or studied in detail. Here we use qualitative osteological features and analyse measurements from wing and leg bones to determine the number of taxa represented...
Article
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The generic and specific status of fossil kangaroo specimens attributed to Nambaroo and Ganawamaya from the Riversleigh World Heritage Area, Australia, are revised and new material is described. Results indicate that the previously proposed 12 species (eight of Nambaroo and four of Ganawamaya) represent four species from a single genus (Ganawamaya)...
Article
Full-text available
A new genus and species of fossil bat is described from New Zealand's only pre-Pleistocene Cenozoic terrestrial fauna, the early Miocene St Bathans Fauna of Central Otago, South Island. Bayesian total evidence phylogenetic analysis places this new Southern Hemisphere taxon among the burrowing bats (mystacinids) of New Zealand and Australia, althoug...
Article
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Miminipossum notioplanetes represents a new Early/Middle Miocene family (Miminipossumidae) of phalangeridan possums recovered from the Two Trees Local Fauna from the Riversleigh World Heritage area in northwestern Queensland and the Kutjamarpu Local Fauna of the Tirari Desert in northern South Australia. Because of widespread convergence in key fea...
Article
Full-text available
Wakaleo schouteni sp. nov., a dog-sized marsupial lion (Thylacoleonidae), is described from late Oligocene to early Miocene sediments of the Riversleigh World Heritage Area, Queensland, Australia. Fossils of this new species include a near-complete cranium, dentaries and postcrania. This species is the second thylacoleonid known from late Oligocene...
Preprint
Full-text available
Peramelemorphia comprises four families: the extant Peramelidae (bandicoots), and Thylacomyidae (bilbies); the recently extinct Chaeropodidae (pig-footed bandicoot); and the extinct Yaralidae; with at least ten fossil species of uncertain familial affinity designated as Perameloidea incertae sedis. Extant taxa (18 species) are characteristically om...
Preprint
Full-text available
Peramelemorphia comprises four families: the extant Peramelidae (bandicoots), and Thylacomyidae (bilbies); the recently extinct Chaeropodidae (pig-footed bandicoot); and the extinct Yaralidae; with at least ten fossil species of uncertain familial affinity designated as Perameloidea incertae sedis. Extant taxa (18 species) are characteristically om...
Article
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The Pliocene fossil record of Australia has revealed the oldest known occurrences of modern peramelemorphian (bandicoot and bilbies) genera such as Perameles, cf. Peroryctes, and Chaeropus. Recent phylogenetic analyses based on morphology have questioned the previously accepted understanding about generic relationships of some of these Pliocene tax...
Article
The Riversleigh World Heritage Area, northwestern Queensland, Australia, contains numerous Oligo-Miocene and Pleistocene fossil bearing deposits. Species of the suborder Macropodiformes (kangaroos and allies) described from Oligo-Miocene sediments at Riversleigh include representatives of all three macropodiform families: Macropodidae, Hypsiprymnod...
Article
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Australian Oligo–Miocene mekosuchines (Crocodylia; Crocodyloidea) display wide diversity in cranial shape and inferred hunting strategies. Terrestrial habitus has been inferred for these distinctive predators. A direct morphological signal for locomotion can be expected in the postcrania, particularly the pelvic and pectoral girdles. Here we descri...
Article
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Fourteen of the best sampled Oligo-Miocene local faunas from the Riversleigh World Heritage Area, north-western Queensland, Australia are analysed using classification and ordination techniques to identify potential mammalian palaeocommunities and palaeocommunity types. Abundance data for these faunas are used, for the first time, in conjunction wi...
Data
Character-taxon matrix used for parsimony analysis Characters scored according to the criteria detailed in Appendix S1 for each specimen and the pelvis of Gavialis gangeticus. Characters were unweighted and multistate characters were left unordered.
Data
Selected pelvic characters Characters used in parsimony and bootstrap analysis of the pelvic materials. Characters 2,6, 8 are partially modified from characters 28 and 34 of Brochu (1999).
Data
Character-taxon matrix used for parsimony analysis Characters scored according to the criteria detailed in Appendix S1 for each specimen and the pelvis of Gavialis gangeticus. Characters were unweighted and multistate characters were left unordered.
Article
The Riversleigh World Heritage Area in Queensland contains a vast array of Oligocene-Pleistocene vertebrate, invertebrate and plant fossils. The existing suite of fossil deposits contains a number of temporal gaps in the faunal succession, and exploration is turning to large expanses of recently-discovered Cenozoic carbonates to the west and south...
Article
Full-text available
Sparassodontans are a diverse but now extinct group of metatherians that were apex predators in South America during most of the Cenozoic. Studying their decline has been controversial mainly due to the scarcity of the fossil record, and different methodological approaches have led to contradictory hypotheses. In an effort to explore questions abou...
Article
Full-text available
The Riversleigh World Heritage Area, north-western Queensland, is one of the richest Cenozoic deposits in Australia for passerine fossils. Most of the Riversleigh passerine remains derive from the late Cenozoic Rackham's Roost Site. Here we describe 38 fossils from this site, which represent eight extant families of passerine birds. These fossils i...
Article
Full-text available
The modern platypus, Ornithorhynchus anatinus, has an eye structure similar to aquatic mammals; however, platypuses also have a “sixth sense” associated with the bill electro- and mechanoreception that they use without opening their eyes underwater. We hypothesize that Ornithorhynchus and the Miocene taxon Obdurodon have different sensory capacitie...
Article
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Scientific Reports 6 : Article number: 26911 10.1038/srep26911 ; published online: 27 May 2016 ; updated: 07 September 2016 The original version of this Article contained the genus and species name of an unpublished taxon ‘Whollydooleya tomnpatrichorum’.
Article
Full-text available
New specimens of the late Oligocene macropodiform, Gumardee pascuali, are described, as well as two new late Oligocene to early Miocene species, G. springae sp. nov. and G. richi sp. nov. Species of Gumardee exhibit a unique combination of features, including very long upper and lower third premolars, partially lophodont molars and, in dorsoventral...