A New Late Hemingfordian Vertebrate Fauna from Hawk Rim, Oregon, with Implications for Biostratigraphy and Geochronology

Document Type


Publication Date



The Hemingfordian North American Land Mammal Age is not well sampled, especially in the Pacific Northwest. Here we present both a description of a new fauna and two radiometric dates, 16.26 Ma and 16.44 Ma, constraining the Hawk Rim locality of central Oregon. Hawk Rim represents the first diverse late Hemingfordian fauna in the Northwest and is one of the stratigraphically lowest fossiliferous outcrops of the Mascall Formation. Much of Oregon was blanketed by Columbia River Flood Basalts during late Hemingfordian time, limiting not only outcrops but places for organisms to have survived. The site yields a taxonomically rich fauna sharing strong faunal similarity with the type locality of the Mascall but also containing taxa new to the formation and region. We describe occurrences of five genera of Artiodactyla, four genera of Perissodactyla, three genera of Rodentia, and six genera of Carnivora, with all but three new occurrences for the Hemingfordian of the Pacific Northwest. In particular, the carnivore fauna extends the geographic and temporal range of several carnivorans, and we describe a new hypercarnivorous mustelid, Watay tabutsigwii.