Faure, M. and Guerin, C. (1989) Plaidoyer pour l'espèce sicilienne hippopotamus pentlandi. Accademia Peloritana dei Pericolanti Classe FF.MM.NN., 67. pp. 297-317.
Altough defined as soon as 1832, and studied afterwards by numerous scholars, namely L. Seguenza and above all B. Accordi, the real status of the Sicilian quaternary hippopotamus is the subject of a rather surprising differences of opinion, even in the same scientific team: beeing a fuli ranking species for some (L. Caloi and M.R. Palombo), because it presents very peculiar anatomical characters, it is no more than a subspecies barely different from Hippopotamus amphibius for others (L. Capasso Barbato and C. Petronio). What is more, the same team (L. Caloi, M.R. Palombo and C. Petronio) throw the mammalogists into confusion by unearthing the old taxon H. antiquus for the large European Pleistocene hippo H. major, and by identifying the other european continental species with the recent african H. aiphibius. To admit for the Sicilian species either a dose proximity or an immediate ancestry with a recent african species whose real existence in thé European Pleistocene failed to be demonstrated seems inacceptable for us: in 1983 M. Faure showed the presence during the Pleistocene in continental Europe of two distinct hippo species, H. major and H. incognitus. both having nothing to do with H. amphibius. Moreover, if we agree with the existence in Sicily of a peculiar endemic species, we think on anatomical and biometrical basis that H. major is the ancestor of H. pentiandi, itself the ancestor of the maltese H. melitensis.
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