The Kor & Bot collection revisited, with a biostratigraphic interpretation of the Early Pleistocene Oosterschelde Fauna (Oosterschelde Estuary, the Netherlands)
For the first time in 30 years the Kor & Bot collection is surveyed and interpreted in its entirety (i.e. all known 2174 pieces) on the occasion of the 65th Kor & Bot expedition in 2015. The locality nomenclature within the Oosterschelde is restructured and clarified, the taxonomy and the anatomical information are corrected and complemented where necessary and 1631 fossils (excluding cetacean material) are measured to gain insight in their taphonomy. The collection contains five faunal groups: (1) Middle Miocene cetaceans, (2) Pliocene marine mammals, (3) Early Pleistocene (Middle Villafranchian) terrestrial mammals (forming the so-called Oosterschelde fauna), (4) Late Pleistocene terrestrial mammals and (5) Holocene terrestrial mammals, and derives for ~95% from three pits within the estuary. Moreover ~75% of cetacean material derives from only one of these three. The collection is diverse in taphonomical expression, but the majority of the material is small in size (mean length ~15 cm), fragmented and all material has been weathered and reworked. The Oosterschelde fauna (MN17, Villafranchian type) is a characteristic assemblage of Early Pleistocene terrestrial mammals and forms the larger part of the Kor & Bot collection. By means of West-European small and large mammal biozonation, correlated to local stratigraphy, its age is now considered 2.35-2.10 Ma.