A Miocene selachian fauna from Moghra, Egypt

Todd D. Cook, Alison M. Murray, Elwyn L. Simons, Yousry S. Attia, Prithijit Chatrath

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


The fossil bearing beds of Moghra, Egypt, have been well known for over 100 years, but the ichthyofaunas have not been examined since the early 1900s. Moghra, on the northern rim of the Qattara Depression, preserves early Miocene (18-17 Ma) fluvio-marine sediments with fossils of wood, invertebrates and vertebrates. The Moghra site is faunally similar to the Libyan Gebel Zelten site, at least in terms of the fossil mammals. The fossil-bearing localities in the Moghra Formation number about 40 and span a distance of about 50 km. There is likely more than one depositional environment represented. The fish previously reported from Moghra include two teleosts, Synodontis (Mochokidae) and Lates (Latidae), as well as the elasmobranchs, Pristis (Pristidae), Myliobatis (Myliobatidae) and Sphyrna (Sphyrnidae). Several more recent expeditions to the Moghra localities recovered abundant selachian remains. This rich assemblage included species from the genera Carcharias (Odontaspididae), Megaselachus (Otodontidae), Cosmopolitodus (Lamnidae), Hemipristis (Hemigaleidae), Galeocerdo and Carcharhinus (Carcharhinidae), Myliobatis (Myliobatidae), Pteromylaeus (Myliobatidae) and Aetobatis (Myliobatidae). With the additional taxa from these collections, we can build a more comprehensive understanding of the Moghra fauna and environment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)78-87
Number of pages10
JournalHistorical Biology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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