South African Journal of Science
On-line version ISSN 1996-7489
Print version ISSN 0038-2353
MANEGOLDAND, A. and LOUCHART, A.. Is there evidence for a Congo peafowl (Afropavo congensis) in the Middle Stone Age of South Africa?: comments on Stidham (2008). S. Afr. j. sci. [online]. 2009, vol.105, n.9-10, pp.391-392. ISSN 1996-7489.
Recently, a fossil Congo peafowl (Afropavo congensis) was described from Middle Stone Age Plovers Lake Cave, South Africa.1 Because this species is now restricted to rainforests in the Congo Basin, it was concluded that the fossil indicates forested, or even rainforest, habitats in the vicinity of Plovers Lake Cave during the Pleistocene.1 The correct identification of the fossil specimen is, however, questionable, and the hypothesis of densely forested areas in this area 71 000 years ago is at odds with manifold evidence that grasslands and open woodlands predominated the palaeoenvironment in Pleistocene southern Africa.
Keywords : Afropavo; Plovers Lake; Middle Stone Age; Pleistocene; rainforest; climate change.