Jens Franzen

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BACKGROUND The best European locality for complete Eocene mammal skeletons is Grube Messel, near Darmstadt, Germany. Although the site was surrounded by a para-tropical rain forest in the Eocene, primates are remarkably rare there, and only eight fragmentary specimens were known until now. Messel has now yielded a full primate skeleton. The specimen has an(More)
 Sediments of the Eckfeld maar (Eifel, Germany) bear a well-preserved Eocene fauna and flora. Biostratigraphically, Eckfeld corresponds to the Middle Eocene mammal reference level MP (Mammals Paleogene) 13 of the ELMA (European Land Mammal Age) Geiseltalian. In the maar crater, basalt fragments were drilled, representing explosion crater eruption products.(More)
The early Middle Eocene locality of Grube Messel, near Darmstadt (Germany), is famous for its complete vertebrate skeletons. The degree of preservation of soft tissues, such as body silhouettes, internal organs and gut contents, is frequently remarkable. The present specimen was analyzed for remnants of the reproductive system. Classic anatomy and osteology(More)
Since its discovery in 1938 Sangiran-3 has been considered a juvenile Pithecanthropus (Homo) erectus, and therefore, excluded from studies of adult H. erectus. Although morphological features align Sangiran-3 with H. erectus, its age designation rests on an unconvincing reconstruction of the occipital torus and lack of sutural fusion. Evaluation of the(More)
The former oilshale pit at Messel near Darmstadt is one of the most important sites of early vertebrates and plants from the European Paleogene. Complete skeletons and even parts of the soft body of the 48 million-year-old fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals are frequently found preserved. It is incomprehensible that this irreplaceable source of(More)