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October 2021
Special Volume 1-2021
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Print ISSN: 0031-0247
Online ISSN: 2274-0333
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APF 2022

En 2022, nous fêterons le bicentenaire du terme « Paléontologie », proposé par
l'anatomiste et zoologiste normand Henri-Marie Ducrotay de Blainville en 1822. Le
prochain congrès de l’APF (, qui aura lieu du 30 mai au 3 juin 2022 à Montpellier, se veut l’occasion de célébrer cet événement.
Le congrès est organisé en partenariat avec l’Institut des Sciences de l’Evolution de
Montpellier (ISEM) et le laboratoire botAnique et Modélisation de l’Architecture des
Plantes et des végétations (AMAP). Ces deux équipes de recherches regroupent
l’ensemble des paléontologues académiques du pôle montpelliérain.
Les visites de l’exposition Corps à cœur du Conservatoire d’Anatomie de l’Université
de Montpellier et de l’exposition Traces du Vivant du Musée de Lodève seront des temps
forts de ce congrès.Le congrès est organisé avec la collaboration et l’appui du Service du Patrimoine
Historique de l’Université de Montpellier, le Musée de Lodève, le Centre Méditerranéen
Environnement et Biodiversité, l’association Palaeovertebrata et les revues PeerJ et

A cette occasion, ne manquez pas la conférence d'Eric Buffetaut sur le bicentenaire de la paélontologie. Mardi 31/05/2022 à Montpellier, 20H, salle Pétrarque, salle Pétrarque.

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Articles in press

Small sauropod tracks in the Hettangian of Southern France – A case of ichnite fossilization in an intertidal zone
Pierre Demathieu, Alain Izart, André Charrière and Monique Vianey-Liaud
Keywords: Intertidal zone; Lower Jurassic; Sauropods; Southern France; Tracks

doi: 10.18563/pv.45.2.e1

    This paper presents the description and the interpretation of recently discovered traces on a Lower Hettangian dolomitic outcrop in the Bédarieux area, Southern France. One trace set immediately attracted the attention by its resemblance to a small sauropod pes-manus couple but no trackway was visible. As the other traces have a variety of shapes with no obvious significance, it took a thorough examination of the 3D and sedimentological data to come to the conclusion that most traces likely were sauropod tracks made under diverse conditions. Sedimentological and ichnological data indicate that the tracks have been made in the intertidal zone of a carbonated tidal flat shortly before an emersion period. It appears that that the variety of trace shapes is due to a variety of water depths: the sauropods were punting when the water level was high. The lack of trackways seems due to the combination of an underprint situation, buoyancy effects and the small size of the track-bearing slab. Several hypotheses can be considered for explaining the very small size of the tracks, such as insular dwarfism or the immaturity of the trackmakers. 

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Enamel hypoplasia on rhinocerotoid teeth: Does CT-scan imaging detect the defects better than the naked eye?
Manon Hullot and Pierre-Olivier Antoine
Keywords: fossil teeth; method; micro-CT imaging; Rhinocerotoidea

doi: 10.18563/pv.45.1.e2

    Micro-CT imaging is an increasingly popular method in paleontology giving access to internal structures with a high resolution and without destroying precious specimens. However, its potential for the study of hypoplasia defects has only recently been investigated. Here, we propose a preliminary study to test whether hypoplastic defects can be detected with micro-CT (μCT) scan and we assess the costs and benefits of using this method instead of naked eye. To do so, we studied 13 fossil rhinocerotid teeth bearing hypoplasia from Béon 1 (late early Miocene, Southwestern France) as positive control and 11 teeth of the amynodontid Cadurcotherium (Oligocene, Phosphorites du Quercy, Southwestern France), for which enamel was partly or totally obscured by cement. We showed that all macroscopically-spotted defects were retrieved on 3D reconstructions and selected virtual slices. We also detected additional defects using μCT scan compared to naked eye identification. The number of defects detected using μCT was greater in the Cadurcotherium dataset (paired-sample Wilcoxon test, p-value = 0.02724) but not for our control sample (paired-sample Wilcoxon test, p-value = 0.1171). Moreover, it allowed for measuring width and depth of the defects on virtual slices (sometimes linked to stress duration and severity, respectively), which we could not do macroscopically. As μCT imaging is both expensive and time consuming while not drastically improving the results, we recommend a moderate and thoughtful use of this method for hypoplasia investigations, restricted for instance to teeth for which enamel surface is obscured (presence of cement, uncomplete preparation, or unerupted germs). 

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S.I. Data
Eocene Teleostean Otoliths, Including a New Taxon, from the Clinchfield Formation (Bartonian) in Georgia, USA, with Biostratigraphic, Biogeographic,
and Paleoecologic Implications
Gary Stringer, Dennis . Parmley and Ashley Quinn
Keywords: climate; Congridae; Ophidiidae; Sciaenidae; tectonics

doi: 10.18563/pv.45.1.e1

    Investigations of the Clinchfield Formation (middle Eocene, upper Bartonian) exposed at the Hardie Mine (Wilkinson County, Georgia, USA), produced 4,768 actinopterygian otoliths representing 14 taxa and increased the number of bony fishes threefold from the site. The somewhat limited richness was characterized by bonefishes, mud eels, conger eels, sea catfishes, cusk-eels, snooks, grunts, drums and croakers, and porgies. The assemblage had a relatively even distribution with Ophidiidae, Congridae, and Sciaenidae most common. Included in the otolith taxa was a new sciaenid genus and species, Eosciaena ebersolei, with unknown relationships to other Sciaenidae. The Clinchfield otoliths were compared to other middle and late Eocene in age otolith assemblages in Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana utilizing percentage similarity measurements. Analysis indicated that the Clinchfield otoliths were not greatly similar or greatly unlike the Moodys Branch and Yazoo Clay otolith assemblages. However, the Clinchfield showed little relationship to the slightly older Lisbon Formation in adjacent Alabama and is postulated to be related to global climatic and plate tectonic events. Biostratigraphically, the Clinchfield otolith taxa are essentially the same as the other formations except for the Lisbon, which has at least ten unique species. Abundances of Clinchfield otolith taxa indicate a possible sub-bioprovince in the eastern Gulf Coastal Plain. The Clinchfield otoliths indicate a tropical to perhaps subtropical, soft substrate, mainly normal marine to slightly reduced salinities, inner shelf (0–20 m) paleoenvironment with indications of proximal continental coastlines. This investigation represents an initial step in addressing the immensely understudied Paleogene otolith assemblages in Georgia.

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Morphological description and identification of an extraordinary new elephant cranium from the early Pliocene of Ileret, Kenya
William Sanders, Meave Leakey, Louise Leakey, Craig Feibel, Timothy Gichunge Ibui, Cyprian Nyete, Mbatha P. Mbete and Francis Brown
Keywords: Elephantidae; Loxodonta adaurora; cranium; early Pliocene; Ileret; Kenya

doi: 10.18563/pv.44.2.e3

    Abstract: Paleontological exploration in the Turkana Basin near Ileret, Kenya yielded the most complete adult elephant cranium (KNM-ER 63642) known from the late Miocene to mid-Pliocene. KNM-ER 63642 derives from the lower Lonyumun Mb. of the Koobi Fora Fm. and dates to the early Pliocene, >4.3 Ma. The cranium is immense in size and preserves most of its structures including left and right M2-3, permitting its comprehensive comparative study and secure taxonomic assignment to Loxodonta adaurora. Features distinctive of the species and exhibited by KNM-ER 63642 include very elongate, divergent tusk alveoli, a short, biconvex cranial roof, anterosuperior angulation of the occipital planum, non-inflated occipital planum and absence of supralateral parietal "bossing," broad, flat premaxillary nasal processes, broad, laterally downturned nasal aperture superior to the level of the orbits, and M3s with wide, subhypsodont plates that are parallel-faced and separated by U-shaped transverse valleys. The M3s also exhibit characteristic L. adaurora traits of greatest width at their bases, rounded cross-sectional shape, thick enamel, abundant cementum, and strong anterior and posterior accessory conules. Of extant taxa, KNM-ER 63642 most closely resembles crania of African elephants. Its inclusion in the Loxodonta clade is tenuous, however, because shared features are either symplesiomorphic or are difficult to test for synapomorphy due to the poor fossil record of crania of late Miocene-early Pliocene elephants. Overall, the cranial morphology of KNM-ER 63642 is unexpectedly advanced for an elephant of its antiquity. Its anteroposterior compression and height are concordant with efficient proal masticatory action, indicating that by the early Pliocene L. adaurora evolved craniodental adaptations in phase with feeding preference for C4 grasses. The advantage of synchrony of morphology and behavior is reflected by the dominance of the species in the greater Turkana Basin during that interval.

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The beginning of the adaptive radiation of Theridomorpha (Rodentia) in Western Europe: morphological and phylogenetic analyses of early and middle Eocene taxa; implications for systematics
Monique Vianey-Liaud and Laurent Marivaux
Keywords: characters analyses; Dental morphology; Eocene; Rodentia; variability

doi: 10.18563/pv.44.2.e2

    This paper provides a revision of the early and middle Eocene European rodents previously referred to as Ischyromyoidea, including taxa considered to be at the origin of the Theridomorpha. The use of an accurate dental terminology and a better understanding of the size and shape of their infra-orbital foramen (i.o.f.) led us to a substantial revision of this group, which allowed to better characterize them and to appreciate their variability. On these bases, phylogenetic analyses (cladistic and standard Bayesian
    approaches) of early Ypresian to late Priabonian European rodent species were undertaken in order to highlight the root of the early Theridomorpha and its content. In this paper, the phylogeny was established based on 343 characters (338 dental) through 45 early Paleogene taxa using both cladistic and bayesian analyses. The ingroup included on one hand a few North American genera (Reithroparamys, Microparamys, and Acritoparamys) and European ones (Eogliravus, Ailuravus, Corbarimys, Meldimys, Euromys, Plesiarctomys, and Pseudoparamys) considered until now as being related with the North American superfamily Ischyromyoidea. On the other hand, it included genera close to the root of the Theridomorpha (Sparnacomys, Pantrogna, and Hartenbergeromys) and early Theridomyoidea (Masillamys, Protadelomys, and some Pseudosciuridae). The phylogenetic results obtained via the two
    distinct reconstruction approaches are consistent in virtually all relationships. The proposed systematics here derives from these phylogenetic results. This phylogenetic context led us to change the suprafamilial, familial, subfamilial or generic attribution of several species. Characters of Theridomorpha, like the obliquely developed postprotocristid allied with the occurrence of a metalophulid I, have been found in genera previously considered as Ischyromyidae (Pseudoparamys, Euromys, Sparnacomys, Meldimys, Pantrogna, and Hartenbergeromys) as well as the large i.o.f., when preserved (Pseudoparamys, Hartenbergeromys, and Masillamys). Based on these morphological observations and new phylogenetic considerations, the content of the Theridomorpha clade is here enlarged, thereby extending back the first theridomorph radiations to the early Eocene. Aside, a new taxon (Reinomys rhomboides gen and sp. nov.) is described from Avenay. In addition, a new genus, Auroremys, is created for the species subita (Comte et al., 2012) from Chery-Chartreuve. 

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S.I. Data
Additions to the elasmobranch assemblage from the Bandah Formation (middle Eocene, Bartonian), Jaisalmer District, Rajasthan, India, and the palaeobiogeographic implications of the fauna
Rajendra S. Rana, Raman Patel, David J. Cicimurri and Jun A. Ebersole
Keywords: Chondrichthyes; Elasmobranchii; Indian Ocean; Palaeogene; South Asia

doi: 10.18563/pv.44.2.e1

    Isolated elasmobranch teeth (sharks and rays) from the middle Eocene (Bartonian) Bandah Formation in the Jaisalmer District of Rajasthan, India are described. The remains improve our knowledge of the environment represented by this lithostratigraphic unit and the ecology preserved therein. Seventeen unequivocal taxa were identified, including Nebrius sp., Striatolamia aff. S. macrota, Brachycarcharias atlasi, B. lerichei, cf. Jaekelotodus sp., Carcharhinus mancinae, Rhizoprionodon sp., Physogaleus sp., Galeocerdo clarkensis, G. eaglesomei, Odontorhytis aff. O. pappenheimi, “Rhinobatos” sp., “Dasyatis” sp., Coupatezia sp., “Aetomylaeus” sp., “Rhinoptera” sp., and Ouledia aff. O. lacuna. Of these, “Aetomylaeus” sp., B. atlasi, C. mancinae, G. clarkensis, G. eaglesomei, cf. Jaekelotodus sp., Nebrius sp., Odontorhytis aff. O. pappenheimi, Ouledia aff. O. lacuna, and “Rhinoptera” sp. are reported from the middle Eocene of India for the first time. The Bandah Formation elasmobranch palaeofauna has close affinities to the Palaeocene-Eocene Tethyan/Paratethyan faunas of Africa, Madagascar, Asia, and Europe, and some taxa indicate a western hemisphere influence from North America. The Bandah Formation palaeofauna indicates that deposition occurred in a moderately shallow marine environment. The Bartonian age is primarily based on foraminifera but is corroborated by the presence of elasmobranch taxa that also occur in contemporaneous deposits elsewhere. The marine regression started during the early Palaeogene, and our study indicates that the sea completely withdrew from the Jaisalmer Basin after the deposition of the Bandah Formation. This event may have been synchronous with the middle Eocene uplift of the Himalayan-Tibetan Plateau. 

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Current Issue

Abstract book of the 18th Conference of the European Association of Vertebrate Palaeontologists (EAVP), 5-9 July 2021, Benevento, Italy
Matteo Belvedere, Verónica Díez Díaz and Raffaele Sardella
Keywords: 2021; Benevento; EAVP

doi: 10.18563/pv.eavp2021

    Welcome to the 18th conference of the EAVP, the first online meeting of our association. The pandemic emergency made it impossible to organize the in-person meeting in Benevento as we all had hoped. However, we couldn’t miss another EAVP meeting. Therefore, this year we are meeting online, trying to make the experience the closest to the in-person meeting possible, in order to offer the delegates the opportunity to share knowledge, build new networks and reinforce the old ones. We have received 137 communications, with more than 150 delegates from 24 countries. All the abstracts have passed a peer review process and are part of this special volume of Palaeovertebrata, the official journal of the EAVP. This year we are also offering a variety of workshops, roundtables and symposia on different topics. These include the annual “Pride EAVP: An LGBTQ+ Roundtable” and “Women in Palaeontology Roundtable Discussion”, together with the workshops on “Gendered Perspective in Palaeontological Research: from Definition to Action”, “International Palaeontology Education: Virtual Teaching and Real-World Learning”, “Stepping out of Academia: Why, When and How?”, “Introduction to Hypothesis Testing in Statistics”, “The Early-Middle Pleistocene Transition: Marked Mammal Turnover and Ecosystem Dynamic” (included in the early event for the XXI INQUA Congress in Rome 2023, “A Mediterranean Perspective on Quaternary Sciences”). To conclude, we are hosting two symposia on “Palaeoart: Diversity on and behind the Canvas” and “3D fossils, Robotic and Experimental Palaeontology”. We wish you all a happy and productive meeting. And see you in Benevento next year! 

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