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October 2021
Special Volume 1-2021
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A New caseid Synapsid from the Permian (Guadalupian) of the Lodève basin (Occitanie, France)
 
Ralf Werneburg, Frederik . Spindler, Jocelyn . Falconnet, Jean-Sebastien Steyer, Monique Vianey-Liaud and Jörg-W. Schneider
Keywords: ; Caseidae; France; Guadalupian; semi-aquatic lifestyle

doi: 10.18563/pv.45.2.e2
 
  Abstract

    Lalieudorhynchus gandi gen. nov. and sp. nov. is a new caseid synapsid from the Permian of the Lodève Basin, Occitanie, France. This new taxon is represented by a partial but well-preserved postcranial skeleton, and is characterized by the following apomorphies: a transverse section of the sacral and anterior caudal neural spines with a very thin keel-like process anteriorly, a slender dorsal tip of the dorsal and caudal spines, a narrow distal end of the first sacral rib, a fossa on triceps process of metacoracoid, and a very large distal tarsal 1 of same width than the astragalus, with nearly all sides being shallowly concave.
    The skeleton corresponds to a sub-adult individual that was excavated from the La Lieude Formation dated as Roadian-Capitanian (Guadalupian). A sedimentological and taphonomical analysis of the type locality, together with preliminary osteohistological observations, suggest that this new French caseid was rather aquatic, as already hypothesised for other large forms.
    A phylogenetic analysis of caseids is performed to test the position of this new taxon and to better understand the evolution of the clade: interestingly, Lalieudorhynchus gandi gen. nov. et sp. nov. is closer to the NorthAmerican “Cotylorhynchushancocki than to the other French caseids Ruthenosaurus and Euromycter from the Artinskian of the geographically closer Rodez Basin. These two last caseids document the Artinskian radiation of the clade, which remained diverse until Olson’s extinction. Caseids survived, as Lalieudorhynchus is one of the youngest representatives of the clade, and may have used novel ecological strategies to access their vegetarian food sources.

      


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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
 
  Abstract

    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
 
  Abstract

    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
Les traces de pas de Dinosaures et autres Archosaures du Lias inférieur des grands Causses, Sud de la France
Georges Demathieu, Georges Gand, Jacques Sciau, Pierre Freytet and Jacques Garric
Keywords: Dinosauroid footprints; France; Grands-Causses; Hettangian; ichnostratigraphy; paleoenvironments; Sinemurian; statistical results

doi: 10.18563/pv.31.1-4.1-143
 
  Abstract

    The Causses" is a near 3400 km2 large plateau located in the south of France. Here the first dinosaur footprints where found in 1935. After this, this area has yielded an ever-increasing number of ichnites now in excess of 500 specimens. These latter, 15 to 50 cm long, tridactyl or tetradactyl footprints of generally biped animals, were discovered at the surface of Hettangian to lower Sinemurian dolomite layers within 4 distinct stratigraphic units. The 35 sites bearing ichnites are located on the plateau margin. For the first time, morphologic characters studied through descriptive statistic methods with the usual parameters and classical Student and Snédecor tests, allowed us, to divide the whole set of biped traces into 6 ichnospecies. Their definitions are further constrained by multivariate statistical results using Principal Component Analysis (PCA), Factor Analysis of correspondances (FAC) and Discriminant Analysis (DA). All have confirmed the morphologic observations. So that now, the following taxa are identified : Grallator variabilis, G. lescurei, G. sauclierensis, G. minusculus, Eubrontes giganteus, Dilophosauripus williamsi, cf. Moraesichnium, Orníthopus fabrei nov ichnosp. The more immediately visible differences relate to the interdigital II-IV divarication and the digit length ratio. To this panel, we must add Batrachopus deweyi and shapes suggesting Trisauropodichnus and/or Anomoepus. Among all ichnite associations described in the lower Liasic, the New England assemblage presents the most affinities with ours. It shows the ichnotaxa Grallator, Dilophosauripus, Eubrontes, Batrachopus without forgetting Ornithopus fabrei nov. ichnosp. which is close to Ornithopus gallinaceus from the Massachusetts and Connecticut basins. On comparing the present early Jurassic ichnofauna of the Causses with the ones of the Middle and Upper Triassic formations of the eastem border of the Massif Central (France), it appears that tridactyl footprints become more and more numerous and large from Triassic to Early Jurassic. In the Causses, these latest are prevalent but in Quercy (France), Poland, Italy, USA, they are also associated with Omithopoda, Thyreophora and Sauropoda ichnites. Footprint areas considered here were generaly under an arid climate. Animals that passed by were heavy and bulky possible Megalosaur trackmakers, and lighter and slender Coelophysids or Ceratosaurs. For all, these areas were pathways as the orientations of the trackways seem point out. The directions followed by these reptiles were without any important variation during the Hettango-Sinemurian stages. These areas were also used from time to time by Crocodilomorpha and may be tetradactyl (I-IV) bipedal avian Theropods. However, the number of such trackways in sites, sometimes substantial, should not lead us to overestimate the trackmakers populations. These last were probably relatively moderately abondant in this inter-supratidal swamp environment. In the Causses, ichnites are connected with former algo-laminated deposits (Algal mats) which were rapidly hardened by means of calcitisation of cyanobacteria. The result has been a moderate depth of footprints; autopodia disturbing only a few cm of the carbonate substrate. Other fossils have been discovered : invertebrates with thin bivalve and gastropod shells, crustaceans tests and plants. These latter suggest the existence of paleomangroves like environments but also continental vegetation periodically overruning the swamp environment during regression/transgression cycles. At these times, wooded parts of it, could become protecting, feeding, resting and nesting places.

      


  Article infos

Published in Vol. 31, Fasc. 1-4 (2002)

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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
 
  Abstract

    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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Les traces de pas d'amphibiens, de dinosaures et autres reptiles du Mesozoïque Français : inventaire et interprétations.
Georges Gand, Georges Demathieu and Christian Montenat
Keywords: Footprints; France; Inventory; Mesozoic; palaeontology; palaeovenvironments; Stratigraphy

doi: 10.18563/pv.35.1-4.1-149
 
  Abstract

    Since the 19th century, thousands of footprints were observed in the geological series of the French Mesozoic. All are located in the Triassic and Jurassic. After a promising beginning, in France, it is only a few papers which will be published in the first half 20th century, unlike the USA and of others countries of Western Europe. One ought to wait about 1950 for a revival and now they are nearly 200 papers which were devoted to the ichnofossils. The literature abundance and the renewed interest of the naturalists for the palichnologic studies decided to us to write a synthesis work. This one begins with a stratigraphic inventory in which, localisation, age and paleontological contents of about 180 fossiliferous sites are specified. After having pointed out the followed methods, the footprints paleontological interpretation is then approached in detail and the results obtained are replaced in stratigraphy to deduce the fauna evolution during the Mesozoic. So, it appears that Ichnologic data, more varied and rich in the Triassic and Liassic than those relating to the bones, very rare for the considered periods, are very informative. The middle Triassic (Anisian-Ladinian), thus reveals Cotylosauria, Lepidosauria, Crurotarsi with Rauisuchia, Ornithosuchidae, Crocodylia and Dinosauromorpha more the "Prodinosauria": Dinosamiforme whose skeletons are known in Argentina but only in Ladinian. The rather fast domination of Dinosaurs during Norian is also as well shown. The almost exclusive presence of their footprints, up to fifty cm long, in the Lower Hettangian indicates their supremacy in the environments. Footprints characterise not very deep life places located between inter-supratidal limits and often out of water. Sedimentologic and Palaeontologic studies showed that they were great coastal spaces during Middle Triassic, flood-plain with sebkhas while Upper Triassic, and a large !!coastal marsh!! in Grands-Causses during Liassic in which, mainly, fine stromatolithic layers were deposited. During the same periad, bay beaches spread in Vendée. During the Middle Jurassic, they are also brackish to lacustrine environments and recifallagoons in- the Upper Jurassic. Numerous measurements of the footprints and trackways directions showed that the animaIs moved there in weil defined directions, for long periods. They seem due to the palaeotopography of the life environments relatively stable. Also, the discovery of vegetal radicular networks and small footprints far away from the continental borderlands has suggested that the animals continuously lived in these palaeoenvironnements, belonging to large ecosystems, where the sedimentation rate was weak. This explains that thebadies could not fossilize there but only their footprints through the cyanobacterian action in main cases. From the vertical distribution of different ichnospecies, defined with adapted statistical methods, explained in this work, a palichnostratigraphy was established for the Middle Triassic. Although the footprints are also abundant in Hettango-Sinemurian of "Grands-Causses" and the Vendée, it was not possible, up to now, to establish any zonation in this series; Probably because the palichnofauna is too little diversified there, currently reduced to a majority of Theropods II-IV tridactyl traces.
      


  Article infos

Published in Vol. 35, Fasc. 1-4 (2007)

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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

    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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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
 
  Abstract

    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! 


  Article infos

Published in Special Volume 1-2021 (2021)

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A pangolin (Manidae, Pholidota, Mammalia) from the French Quercy phosphorites (Pech du Fraysse, Saint-Projet, Tarn-et-Garonne, late Oligocene, MP 28)
Jean-Yves Crochet, Lionel Hautier and Thomas Lehmann
Keywords: Oligocene; Pangolin; Pech du Fraysse; Quercy phosphorites

doi: 10.18563/pv.39.2.e4
 
  Abstract

    Pangolins have never shown a high taxic diversity and their fossil record is scarce. We report here the first discovery of a partial humerus from late Oligocene deposits in Pech du Fraysse (MP28, France). The new specimen from Pech du Fraysse is described and compared to various extant and extinct species of pangolins. It shows a suite of morphological features very similar to the humeri discovered in Saint-André (MP 26), Solnhofen (Burdigalien), and Saulcet (Aquitanian), attributed here to Necromanis franconica. The description of the specimen from Pech du Fraysse allowed us to discuss the systematics of Paleogene and Neogene pholidotans. The differences between PFY 4051 and N. franconica on the one side, and N. quercyi on the other side, might be sufficiently important to justify a generic distinction. A comparison with extant species showed that N. franconica was likely terrestrial and fossorial based on its humeral morphology. 



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  Article infos

Published in Vol.39-2 (2015)

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Macroscelidea, Insectivora and Chiroptera from the Miocene of east Africa.
Percy M. Butler
Keywords: Chiroptera; East Africa; Insectivora; Macroscelidea; Miocene; systematics
 
  Abstract

    The East African Miocene Macroscelidea, lnsectivora and Chiroptera are revised on the basis of new material. New taxa proposed are: Miorhynchocyon, .n. gen. (Macroscelididae): Míorhynchocyon meswae, n. sp.: Pronasílío ternanensis. n. gen.. n. sp. (Macroscelididae); Hiwegicyon juvenalis, n. gen. n. sp. (Macroscelididae); Parageogale, n. gen. (Tenrecidae): Prochrysochlorinae, n. subfam. (Chrysochloridae): Propottininae, n. subfam, (Pteropodidae); Chamtwaria pickfordi, n. gen., n. sp. (Vespertilionidae). Gymnurechnínus songhorensis is synonymised with G. camptolophus. The new material provides additional information on the dentition, especially of Myohyrax oswaldi. Galerix africanus. Amphechínus rusingensis, Protenrec tricuspis and Parageogale aletris. Partial skulls are described of Amphechinus rusingensis, Protenrec tricuspis, Prochrysochloris míocaenicus and Taphozous incognita. The oldest member of the Macroscelidinae (Pronasilio) is described from Fort Ternan. Galerix africanus is closely related to G. exilis from Europe. Amphechinus rusingenesis is compared with Asiatic Oligocene Erinaceinae. The Miocene age of Crocidura is rejected. On the evidence of humeri, the following families of Chiroptera are newly reported: Pteropodidae, Nycterididae, Vespertilionidae, Molossidae. Propotto is regarded as an offshoot from the Pteropodidae, not ancestral to modern forms. Chamtwaria is a primitive vespertilionoid, provisionally placed in the Kerivoulinae. Erinaceidae probably entered Africa at the beginning of the Miocene, before 20 Ma. Faunistic differences between deposits are largely to be ascribed to differences in local environment. 


  Article infos

Published in Vol. 14, Fasc. 3 (1984)

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A new and primitive species of Protophiomys (Rodentia, Hystricognathi) from the late middle Eocene of Djebel el Kébar, Central Tunisia
Laurent Marivaux, El M. Essid, Wissem Marzougui, Hayet Khayati Ammar, Sylvain Adnet, Bernard Marandat, Gilles Merzeraud, Rodolphe Tabuce and Monique Vianey-Liaud
Keywords: Adaptive radiation; Bartonian; Dental morphology; North Africa; Paleobiogeography

doi: 10.18563/pv.38.1.e2
 
  Abstract

    Based on fossil discoveries and phylogenetic studies, an Eocene Asian origin for hystricognathous rodents and anthropoid primates has gained strong support in recent years. The two groups then invaded both Africa and South America, which promoted their evolutionary success. However, the fossil record has so far failed to constrain the nature and precise timing of these pivotal dispersal events. In Africa, given the apparent absence of hystricognaths and anthropoids in early to early middle Eocene localities, it is suggested that these mammal groups dispersed from Asia to Africa sometime during the middle Eocene. In this paper, we report the discovery of several isolated teeth of a rodent from a new vertebrate locality situated in central Tunisia (Djebel el Kébar, KEB-1), dating from the late middle Eocene (Bartonian, ~39.5 Myr). These fossils document a diminutive new species of Protophiomys (P. tunisiensis nov. sp.), a basal genus of hystricognathous rodents which is well known from several North African mammalian-bearing localities of the end of the Eocene. The teeth of P. tunisiensis display a suite of anatomical details comparable with those observed in the other species of the genus, but with a lesser degree of development. Such an apparent primitive evolutionary stage is corroborated by the greater antiquity of this Tunisian species. P. tunisiensis nov. sp. is so far the most ancient representative of hystricognaths in Africa. However, it can be expected that hystricognaths were already present on that landmass given the new data on early caviomorphs recently reported from South America (at ~41 Myr). The arrival of hystricognaths in Africa from South Asia certainly predates the depositional period of the Kébar sediments, but perhaps not by much time. 


  Article infos

Published in Vol.38-1 (2014)

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Physogaleus hemmooriensis (Carcharhinidae, Elasmobranchii), a new shark species from the early to middle Miocene of the north sea basin.
Thomas Reinecke and Kristiaan Hoedemakers
Keywords: Carcharhinidae; Early Miocene; Elasmobranchii; Hemmoorian; new species; North Sea Basin; Physogaleus
 
  Abstract

    A new carcharhinid shark species, Physogaleus hemmooriensis sp. nov., is described from the Lower Hemmoorian (Behrendorfian, late Burdigalian, early Miocene) of Werder, Lower Saxony, Germany. P. hemmooriensis also occurs in the Edegem and Antwerpen Sands Members of the Berchem Formation, Belgium, and in the Miste Bed, Aalten Member of the Breda Formation, The Netherlands, which have an early to middle Miocene age. In the Western Atlantic region, the taxon is present in the early Miocene Calvert Formation of Delaware, U.S.A, which is largely contemporaneous with the Hemmoorian. 


  Article infos

Published in Vol. 34, Fasc. 1-2 (2006)

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Two new scyliorhinid shark species (Elasmobranchii, Carcharhiniformes, Scyliorhinidae), from the Sülstorf Beds (Chattian, Late Oligocene) of the southeastern North Sea Basin, northern Germany.
Thomas Reinecke
Keywords: Chattian; Elasmobranchii; North Sea Basin; Scyliorhinidae; Scyliorhinus

doi: 10.18563/pv.38.1.e1
 
  Abstract

    Based on isolated teeth two new scyliorhinid shark species, Scyliorhinus biformis nov. sp. and Scyliorhinus suelstorfensis nov. sp., are described from the Sülstorf Beds, early-middle Chattian, of Mecklenburg, northeastern Germany. They form part of a speciose assemblage of necto-benthic sharks and batoids which populated the warm-temperate to subtropical upper shelf sea of the south-eastern North Sea Basin. 


  Article infos

Published in Vol.38-1 (2014)

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Batoids (Rajiformes, Torpediniformes, Myliobatiformes) from the Sülstorf Beds (Chattian, Late Oligocene) of Mecklenburg, northeastern Germany: a revision and description of three new species
Thomas Reinecke
Keywords: Batoids; Chattian; Elasmobranchii; North Sea Basin; Oligocene

doi: 10.18563/pv.39.2.e2
 
  Abstract

    Bulk-sampling of fossil-rich tempestites from the Chattian Sülstorf Beds of
    Mecklenburg, north-eastern Germany, yielded a rich selachian fauna in which batoids
    predominate by the abundance of teeth but are subordinate by the number of taxa. Thirteen
    taxa are identified, among which rajiform batoids are the most diverse (six species). One
    genus and three species are newly described: Raja thiedei sp. nov., Oligoraja pristina gen. et
    sp. nov., and Torpedo chattica sp. nov. Two species are reallocated: Atlantoraja cecilae
    (Steurbaut & Herman, 1978) new comb., and Dipturus casieri (Steurbaut & Herman, 1978)
    new comb. Ontogenetic heterodonty is documented for the first time in the dental pattern of
    Myliobatis sp. Stratigraphical ranges of batoid taxa in the period from Rupelian to Langhian
    are presented and partly discussed in context with the palaeoclimatic evolution and
    palaeogeographic situation of the North Sea Basin. 


  Article infos

Published in Vol.39-2 (2015)

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New remains of the giant bird Gargantuavis philoinos from the Late Cretaceous of Provence (south-eastern France)
Eric Buffetaut, Delphine Angst, Patrick Mechin and Annie Mechin-Salessy
Keywords: Aves; Gargantuavis; Late Cretaceous; Pelvis; South-eastern France

doi: 10.18563/pv.39.2.e3
 
  Abstract


    Two incomplete pelves of the giant bird Gargantuavis philoinos are described from Late Cretaceous deposits at Fox-Amphoux (Var, south-eastern France). They consist of synsacra with attached parts of the ilia. One of them has undergone considerable dorsoventral compression, which makes it very similar in appearance to the holotype pelvis of Gargantuavis philoinos from Campagne-sur-Aude (Aude, southern France). The second specimen has suffered some lateral distortion but is uncrushed dorsoventrally. Because of this, its avians characters (including an arched synsacrum and widespread pneumatisation) are especially clear. These new specimens confirm the avian nature of Gargantuavis and reveal new details about its pelvic anatomy, but provide little new evidence about its systematic position within Aves. The geographical distribution and general rarity of Gargantuavis are discussed.
      


  Article infos

Published in Vol.39-2 (2015)

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There were giants upon the earth in those days
Pierre-Olivier Antoine
Keywords: Eurasia; history of science; Indricotheriinae; Paleogene; Rhinocerotoidea

doi: 10.18563/pv.38.1.e4
 
  Abstract

    Rhinoceros Giants: the Paleobiology of Indricotheres. Donald R. Prothero. Life of the Past Collection, Indiana University Press; 160 pp. (66 b&w illustrations). Hardback (7x10”): USD 42.00 plus shipping. ISBN: 978-0-253-00819-0. E-book: USD 34.99. ISBN: 978-0-253-00826-8.
      


  Article infos

Published in Vol.38-1 (2014)

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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
 
  Abstract

    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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in press

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Evolution et extinction des reptiles marins au cours du Mésozoïque.
Nathalie Bardet
Keywords: Crocodiles; evolution; Extinctions; faunal assemblages; Helveticosaurs; Hupehsuchians; Ichthyoaurs; lizards; Marine Reptiles; Mesozoic; Nothosaurs; Pachypleurosaurs; Placodonts; Plesiosaurs; Snakes; Thalattosaurs; Turnovers; Turtles
 
  Abstract

    An interpretation of the marine reptile fossil record, based on the existing litterature and complemented by the review of ancient collections and the study of new material, permits a better understanding of Mesozoic marine ecosystems. An inventory of the marine reptiles known from the Lower Triassic to the Paleocene is presented: 46 families, about 200 genera and 400 species have been recorded. This data base includes commentaries about systematics, stratigraphical ranges and geographical distribution of taxa. Marine reptiles include a mosaic of not necessarily closely related groups: ichthyosaurs, thalattosaurs, hupehsuchians, pachypleurosaurs, placodonts, nothosaurs, plesiosaurs, pliosaurs but also crocodiles, lizards, snakes, turtles. The diversity studies reveal that the fossil record of marine reptiles has been punctuated by two mass extinctions, during the Middle-Upper Triassic transition and at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary. The Jurassic-Cretaceous and Cenomanian-Turonian boundaries (the latter marked by the disappearance of ichthyosaurs) are potential crisis periods, but current data are not sufficient to reach conclusions. The Ladinian-Carnian transition is characterized by the disappearance of 64 % of families and affects essentially coastal forms. This extinction coincides with an important regressive phase. During the Upper Triassic, a faunal reorganisation within marine reptiles leads to the progressive disappearance of near-shore forms and to the development of pelagic groups. During the Maastrichtian-Danian crisis, 36% of families died out. Large-sized pelagic forms such as mosasaurs and elasmosaurs were the most affected and their extinction seems to have been rather sudden. On the other hand, pliosaurs and protostegid turtles became extinct, but were already declining. The survivors were near-shore forms such as crocodiles, snakes and some turtles and they may have taken refuge in freshwater environments. A break in the food chain based on phytoplankton is proposed as an extinction scenario for pelagic forms.

      


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Published in Vol. 24, Fasc. 3-4 (1995)

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Mammals and stratigraphy : Geochronology of the continental mammal-bearing Tertiary of south America.
Larry G. Marshall, Robert Hoffstetter and Rosendo Pascual
Keywords: Cenozoic; Geochronology; Mammalia; South America; Stratigraphy; Tertiary
 
  Abstract

    The principles and practices employed in establishment and recognition of South American land mammal ages are reviewed along with previous and present concepts of distinguishing time, rock, and faunal units. Previous chronological arrangements of South American Tertiary land mammal faunas are appraised on the basis of recent geological and paleontological data. Twelve South American Tertiary land mammal ages are here recognized [from oldest to youngest, Riochican (middle to late Paleocene); Casamayoran (early Eocene); Mustersan (middle Eocene); Divisaderan (late Eocene); Deseadan (early [to middle?] Oligocene); Colhuehuapian (late Oligocene); Santacrucian (early Miocene); Friasan (middle Miocene); Chasicoan (late Miocene); Huayquerian (latest Miocene); Montehermosan (early to middle Pliocene); and Chapadmalalan (late Pliocene)]. As all except the Friasian were originally defined on the basis of Argentine faunas, these are discussed first and at length, and each is reviewed with discussion of type locality, stratigraphy, type fauna, and faunal correlations. Non-Argentine faunas are then discussed country by country in alphabetical order.

         A review is given of radioisotope dates obtained on volcanic rocks (i.e., basalts, tuffs) associated with mammalbearing beds in Argentina. Based on these age determinations and on correlation of the late Tertiary land mammals involved in the interchange between North and South America, a chronology of South American land mammal ages correlated with North American land mammal ages and European marine stages is proposed.

    It is concluded that South America was an island continent through most of the Tertiary Period (ca 65 to about 3 Ma). As a result, the land mammal fauna of South America developed in isolation and was dominated by autochthonous endemic groups. Toward the end of the Tertiary (i.e., middle Miocene) a unique faunal balance had been achieved by the descendants of the ancient inhabitants (notoungulates, litopterns, condylarths, astrapotheres, edentates, marsupials) and of later (late Eocene) waif immigrants (caviomorph rodents, platyrrhine primates). A prominent feature of this mammal fauna was the combination of carnivorous and omnivorous marsupials with native placental herbivorous ungulates, subungulates, and edentates.

    Sometime during the late Miocene, a limited but important interchange of mammalian taxa between North and South America took place. Procyonids (raccoons and their allies), a group of North American origin, first appear in South America in strata of Huayquerian Age, while members of the extinct South American ground sloth families Megalonychidae and Mylodontidae first appear in North America in early Hemphillian time. These groups dispersed along island arcs before the appearance of the Panamanian land bridge in the Pliocene (ca 3.0 Ma). Cricetine rodents, a group of North American origin, are first known in South America in strata of Montehermosan Age. The known taxa are too advanced and diversified to be considered the first of this group to invade South America. lt is believed by some workers that these rodents arrived before the Montehermosan, possibly in the late Miocene or earlier, by waif dispersal from North America.

    The isolation of South America ended with the appearance of the Panamanian land bridge, which provided a direct, dry land connection between the two Americas. Across this portal an extensive interchange of terrestrial faunas occurred, and the fossil record documents an intermingling of these long-separated land mammals faunas.

          The beginning of this interchange by land route in South America is marked by the appearance of mammals which evolved from North American emigrants in the Chapadmalal Formation of Argentina. These include a mustelid (Conepatus), a tayassuid (Argyrohyus), and four genera (Akodon, Dankomys, Graomys, Reithrodon) of cricetine rodents. The appearance of this contingent of northern animals favors the existence of the Panamanian land bridge by this time. Likewise, a large number of terrestrial vertebrates of South American origin appear in North America in beds of late Blancan Age date around 2.7 Ma. Among the mammals are Neochoerus, Erethizon, Glyptotherium, Glossotherium, Kraglievichia, and Dasypus


  Article infos

Published in Vol. 13, Ext (1983)

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La palichnofaune de vertébrés tétrapodes du permien supérieur du Bassin de Lodève (Languedoc-France).
Georges Gand, Jacques Garric, Georges Demathieu and Paul Ellenberger
Keywords: Footprints; France; Languedoc; Lodève basin; new ichnotypus; Saxonian; Upper Permian
 
  Abstract

    Near "la Lieude", in the Lodève basin, more than a thousand of footprints are distributed in a twenty of trackways which amounts to 220 m length. They have been found on calcareous siltstone level in the B site named also "Réserve Naturelle Volontaire". This last is located in the Saxonian summit dated Upper Permian. "La Lieude" tracks are described by using statistical methods then they are compared with others from the world Permian. What allows to distinguish 4 following ichnotaxa: Lunaepes ollierorum nov.ichnosp., Merifontichnus thalerius nov. ichnogen. and nov. ichnosp., Planipes brachydactylus nov.ichnosp. and Brontopus circagiganteus nov. ichnosp. All these traces are attributed with possibility or probability to Therapsida or to Therosauria, except Brontopus circagiganteus nov. ichnosp. that could be due to Caseamorpha. All these animals whose sizes have been estimated between l and 5 m lived probably in a playa environment.The biological and sedimentological data from "la Lieude" footprints levels compared with informations provided by the tracks orientations, suggest the following scenario. Animals coming from the North have crossed a sandy channel bank with plants zones by directing to the South for the majority. Maybe, they were going to the lacustrine part of the playa, close to "la Lieude" footprints that they have just trampled on. 


  Article infos

Published in Vol. 29, Fasc. 1 (2000)

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