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Sample records for late jurassic fossil

  1. Exceptionally preserved insect fossils in the Late Jurassic lagoon of Orbagnoux (Rhône Valley, France)

    PubMed Central

    Nel, Patricia; Krieg-Jacquier, Régis; Pouillon, Jean-Marc

    2014-01-01

    The Late Kimmeridgian marine limestones of the area around Orbagnoux (Rhône, France) are well known for their fish fauna and terrestrial flora. Here we record the first insects and their activities (mines on leaves and trails in sediments) from these layers, including the oldest record of the gerromorphan bugs, as a new genus and species Gallomesovelia grioti, attributed to the most basal family Mesoveliidae and subfamily Madeoveliinae. These new fossils suggest the presence of a complex terrestrial palaeoecosystem on emerged lands near the lagoon where the limestones were deposited. The exquisite state of preservation of these fossils also suggests that these outcrops can potentially become an important Konservat-Lagerstätte for the Late Jurassic of Western Europe. PMID:25210652

  2. Notoatherix antiqua gen. et sp. nov., first fossil water snipe fly from the Late Jurassic of Australia (Diptera: Athericidae).

    PubMed

    Oberprieler, Stefanie K; Yeates, David K

    2014-09-22

    The first water snipe fly (Diptera: Tabanomorpha) fossil discovered in the Late Jurassic Talbragar Fish Bed in Australia is described and illustrated. Notoatherix antiqua gen. et sp. nov., described from a single wing specimen, is assigned to the family Athericidae based on the diagnostic feature of this family: the vein R2+3 ending very near to R1 (marginal cell closed). It is the first record of Athericidae from Australia and the oldest adult record of this family worldwide.

  3. Late Jurassic salamandroid from western Liaoning, China

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Ke-Qin; Shubin, Neil H.

    2012-01-01

    A Jurassic salamander, Beiyanerpeton jianpingensis (gen. et sp. nov.), from a recently found site in western Liaoning Province, China is the earliest known record of Salamandroidea. As a Late Jurassic record of the group, it extends the range of the clade by ~40 Ma. The Late Jurassic taxon is neotenic and represented by exceptionally preserved specimens, including fully articulated cranial and postcranial skeletons and bony gill structures close to the cheek region. The fossil beds, consisting of dark-brown volcanic ash shales of the Upper Jurassic Tiaojishan (Lanqi) Formation (Oxfordian), underlie trachyandesite rocks that have yielded a SHRIMP zircon U-Pb date of 157 ± 3 Ma. The fossiliferous beds are substantially older than the Jehol Group, including the Yixian Formation (40Ar/39Ar dates of 122–129 Ma), but slightly younger than the Middle Jurassic Daohugou horizon (40Ar/39Ar date of 164 ± 4 Ma). The early fossil taxon shares with extant salamandroids derived character states, including: separated nasals lacking a midline contact, angular fused to the prearticular in the lower jaw, and double-headed ribs on the presacral vertebrae. In contrast to extant salamandroids, however, the salamander shows a discrete and tooth-bearing palatine, and unequivocally nonpedicellate and monocuspid marginal teeth in large and presumably mature individuals. The finding provides insights into the evolution of key characters of salamanders, and also provides direct evidence supporting the hypothesis that the split between Cryptobranchoidea and Salamandroidea had taken placed before the Late Jurassic Oxfordian time. In this aspect, both paleontological and molecular data now come to agree. PMID:22411790

  4. A new carnivorous dinosaur from the Late Jurassic Solnhofen archipelago.

    PubMed

    Göhlich, Ursula B; Chiappe, Luis M

    2006-03-16

    Small Late Jurassic theropod dinosaurs are rare worldwide. In Europe these carnivorous dinosaurs are represented primarily by only two skeletons of Compsognathus, neither of which is well preserved. Here we describe a small new theropod dinosaur from the Late Jurassic period of Schamhaupten in southern Germany. Being exquisitely preserved and complete from the snout to the distal third of the tail, the new fossil is the best-preserved predatory, non-avian dinosaur in Europe. It possesses a suite of characters that support its identification as a basal coelurosaur. A cladistic analysis indicates that the new taxon is closer to maniraptorans than to tyrannosauroids, grouping it with taxa often considered to be compsognathids. Large portions of integument are preserved along its tail. The absence of feathers or feather-like structures in a fossil phylogenetically nested within feathered theropods indicates that the evolution of these integumentary structures might be more complex than previously thought.

  5. Earliest evolution of multituberculate mammals revealed by a new Jurassic fossil.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Chong-Xi; Ji, Qiang; Meng, Qing-Jin; Tabrum, Alan R; Luo, Zhe-Xi

    2013-08-16

    Multituberculates were successful herbivorous mammals and were more diverse and numerically abundant than any other mammal groups in Mesozoic ecosystems. The clade also developed diverse locomotor adaptations in the Cretaceous and Paleogene. We report a new fossil skeleton from the Late Jurassic of China that belongs to the basalmost multituberculate family. Dental features of this new Jurassic multituberculate show omnivorous adaptation, and its well-preserved skeleton sheds light on ancestral skeletal features of all multituberculates, especially the highly mobile joints of the ankle, crucial for later evolutionary success of multituberculates in the Cretaceous and Paleogene.

  6. A late Jurassic pterosaur (Reptilia, Pterodactyloidea) from northwestern Patagonia, Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Codorniú, Laura; Gasparini, Zulma; Paulina-Carabajal, Ariana

    2006-03-01

    A small to medium-sized pterodactyloid pterosaur (wingspan approximately 1.10 m) from the Upper Jurassic (middle-late Tithonian) marine deposits of the Vaca Muerta Formation of Patagonia (Los Catutos area, central Neuquén Province, Argentina) is reported. The specimen lacks the skull but constitutes a nearly complete postcranial skeleton, which includes cervical and dorsal vertebrae; a few thoracic ribs; both pectoral girdles; the left pelvic girdle; a proximal right wing (humerus, ulna, and radius) and metacarpal IV; a left wing that lacks only wing phalanx four; and both hindlimbs, the right one without the foot. Ontogenetic features suggest that the new fossil corresponds to a relatively mature individual, probably a subadult. Observed characters support its assignment to the Archaeopteroactyloidea, a basal clade within the Pterodactyloidea. This specimen is the second pterosaur from Los Catutos and the most complete Jurassic pterosaur so far known from South America.

  7. A basal alvarezsauroid theropod from the early Late Jurassic of Xinjiang, China.

    PubMed

    Choiniere, Jonah N; Xu, Xing; Clark, James M; Forster, Catherine A; Guo, Yu; Han, Fenglu

    2010-01-29

    The fossil record of Jurassic theropod dinosaurs closely related to birds remains poor. A new theropod from the earliest Late Jurassic of western China represents the earliest diverging member of the enigmatic theropod group Alvarezsauroidea and confirms that this group is a basal member of Maniraptora, the clade containing birds and their closest theropod relatives. It extends the fossil record of Alvarezsauroidea by 63 million years and provides evidence for maniraptorans earlier in the fossil record than Archaeopteryx. The new taxon confirms extreme morphological convergence between birds and derived alvarezsauroids and illuminates incipient stages of the highly modified alvarezsaurid forelimb.

  8. New Fossil Lepidoptera (Insecta: Amphiesmenoptera) from the Middle Jurassic Jiulongshan Formation of Northeastern China

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Weiting; Shih, Chungkun; Labandeira, Conrad C.; Sohn, Jae-Cheon; Davis, Donald R.; Santiago-Blay, Jorge A.; Flint, Oliver; Ren, Dong

    2013-01-01

    Background The early history of the Lepidoptera is poorly known, a feature attributable to an inadequate preservational potential and an exceptionally low occurrence of moth fossils in relevant mid-Mesozoic deposits. In this study, we examine a particularly rich assemblage of morphologically basal moths that contribute significantly toward the understanding of early lepidopteran biodiversity. Methodology/Principal Findings Our documentation of early fossil moths involved light- and scanning electron microscopic examination of specimens, supported by various illumination and specimen contrast techniques. A total of 20 moths were collected from the late Middle Jurassic Jiulongshan Formation in Northeastern China. Our principal results were the recognition and description of seven new genera and seven new species assigned to the Eolepidopterigidae; one new genus with four new species assigned to the Mesokristenseniidae; three new genera with three new species assigned to the Ascololepidopterigidae fam. nov.; and one specimen unassigned to family. Lepidopteran assignment of these taxa is supported by apomorphies of extant lineages, including the M1 vein, after separation from the M2 vein, subtending an angle greater than 60 degrees that is sharply angulate at the junction with the r–m crossvein (variable in Trichoptera); presence of a foretibial epiphysis; the forewing M vein often bearing three branches; and the presence of piliform scales along wing veins. Conclusions/Significance The diversity of these late Middle Jurassic lepidopterans supports a conclusion that the Lepidoptera–Trichoptera divergence occurred by the Early Jurassic. PMID:24278142

  9. Direct evidence of hybodont shark predation on Late Jurassic ammonites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vullo, Romain

    2011-06-01

    Sharks are known to have been ammonoid predators, as indicated by analysis of bite marks or coprolite contents. However, body fossil associations attesting to this predator-prey relationship have never been described so far. Here, I report a unique finding from the Late Jurassic of western France: a complete specimen of the Kimmeridgian ammonite Orthaspidoceras bearing one tooth of the hybodont shark Planohybodus. Some possible tooth puncture marks are also observed. This is the first direct evidence of such a trophic link between these two major Mesozoic groups, allowing an accurate identification of both organisms. Although Planohybodus displays a tearing-type dentition generally assumed to have been especially adapted for large unshelled prey, our discovery clearly shows that this shark was also able to attack robust ammonites such as aspidoceratids. The direct evidence presented here provides new insights into the Mesozoic marine ecosystem food webs.

  10. Cycads: Fossil evidence of late paleozoic origin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mamay, S.H.

    1969-01-01

    Plant fossils from Lower Permian strata of the southwestern United States have been interpreted as cycadalean megasporophylls. They are evidently descended from spermopterid elements of the Pennsylvanian Taeniopteris complex; thus the known fossil history of the cycads is extended from the Late Triassic into the late Paleozoic. Possible implications of the Permian fossils toward evolution of the angiosperm carpel are considered.

  11. Cycads: fossil evidence of late paleozoic origin.

    PubMed

    Mamay, S H

    1969-04-18

    Plant fossils from Lower Permian strata of the southwestern United States have been interpreted as cycadalean megasporophylls. They are evidently descended from spermopterid elements of the Pennsylvanian Taeniopteris complex; thus the known fossil history of the cycads is extended from the Late Triassic into the late Paleozoic. Possible implications of the Permian fossils toward evolution of the angiosperm carpel are considered.

  12. Late Jurassic plutonism in the southwest U.S. Cordillera

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Barth, A.P.; Wooden, J.L.; Howard, K.A.; Richards, J.L.

    2008-01-01

    Although plate reconstructions suggest that subduction was an approximately steady-state process from the mid-Mesozoic through the early Tertiary, recent precise geochronologic studies suggest highly episodic emplacement of voluminous continental-margin batholiths in the U.S. Cordillera. In central and southern California and western Arizona, major episodes of batholithic magmatism are known to have occurred in Permian-Triassic, Middle Jurassic, and late Early to Late Cretaceous time. However, recent studies of forearc-basin and continental-interior sediments suggest that Late Jurassic time was probably also a period of significant magmatism, although few dated plutons of this age have been recognized. We describe a belt of Late Jurassic plutonic and hypabyssal rocks at least 200 km in length that extends from the northwestern Mojave Desert through the Transverse Ranges. The belt lies outboard of both the voluminous Middle Jurassic arc and the ca. 148 Ma Independence dike swarm at these latitudes. The plutons include two intrusive suites emplaced between 157 and 149 Ma: a calc-alkaline suite compositionally unlike Permian-Triassic and Middle Jurassic mon-zonitic suites but similar to Late Cretaceous arc plutons emplaced across this region, and a contemporaneous but not comagmatic alkaline suite. The Late Jurassic was thus a time of both tectonic and magmatic transitions in the southern Cordillera. ?? 2008 The Geological Society of America.

  13. A Giant Pliosaurid Skull from the Late Jurassic of England

    PubMed Central

    Benson, Roger B. J.; Evans, Mark; Smith, Adam S.; Sassoon, Judyth; Moore-Faye, Scott; Ketchum, Hilary F.; Forrest, Richard

    2013-01-01

    Pliosaurids were a long-lived and cosmopolitan group of marine predators that spanned 110 million years and occupied the upper tiers of marine ecosystems from the Middle Jurassic until the early Late Cretaceous. A well-preserved giant pliosaurid skull from the Late Jurassic Kimmeridge Clay Formation of Dorset, United Kingdom, represents a new species, Pliosaurus kevani. This specimen is described in detail, and the taxonomy and systematics of Late Jurassic pliosaurids is revised. We name two additional new species, Pliosaurus carpenteri and Pliosaurus westburyensis, based on previously described relatively complete, well-preserved remains. Most or all Late Jurassic pliosaurids represent a globally distributed monophyletic group (the genus Pliosaurus, excluding ‘Pliosaurus’ andrewsi). Despite its high species diversity, and geographically widespread, temporally extensive occurrence, Pliosaurus shows relatively less morphological and ecological variation than is seen in earlier, multi-genus pliosaurid assemblages such as that of the Middle Jurassic Oxford Clay Formation. It also shows less ecological variation than the pliosaurid-like Cretaceous clade Polycotylidae. Species of Pliosaurus had robust skulls, large body sizes (with skull lengths of 1.7–2.1 metres), and trihedral or subtrihedral teeth suggesting macropredaceous habits. Our data support a trend of decreasing length of the mandibular symphysis through Late Jurassic time, as previously suggested. This may be correlated with increasing adaptation to feeding on large prey. Maximum body size of pliosaurids increased from their first appearance in the Early Jurassic until the Early Cretaceous (skull lengths up to 2360 mm). However, some reduction occurred before their final extinction in the early Late Cretaceous (skull lengths up to 1750 mm). PMID:23741520

  14. A New Basal Salamandroid (Amphibia, Urodela) from the Late Jurassic of Qinglong, Hebei Province, China

    PubMed Central

    Jia, Jia; Gao, Ke-Qin

    2016-01-01

    A new salamandroid salamander, Qinglongtriton gangouensis (gen. et sp. nov.), is named and described based on 46 fossil specimens of juveniles and adults collected from the Upper Jurassic (Oxfordian) Tiaojishan Formation cropping out in Hebei Province, China. The new salamander displays several ontogenetically and taxonomically significant features, most prominently the presence of a toothed palatine, toothed coronoid, and a unique pattern of the hyobranchium in adults. Comparative study of the new salamander with previously known fossil and extant salamandroids sheds new light on the early evolution of the Salamandroidea, the most species-diverse clade in the Urodela. Cladistic analysis places the new salamander as the sister taxon to Beiyanerpeton, and the two taxa together form the basalmost clade within the Salamandroidea. Along with recently reported Beiyanerpeton from the same geological formation in the neighboring Liaoning Province, the discovery of Qinglongtriton indicates that morphological disparity had been underway for the salamandroid clade by early Late Jurassic (Oxfordian) time. PMID:27144770

  15. The earliest fossil record of Panorpidae (Mecoptera) from the Middle Jurassic of China

    PubMed Central

    Ding, He; Shih, Chungkun; Bashkuev, Alexei; Zhao, Yunyun; Ren, Dong

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The early history of Panorpidae (Mecoptera) is poorly known due to sparse fossil records. Up to date, only nine fossil species have been described, all from the Paleogene, except the Early Cretaceous Solusipanorpa gibbidorsa Lin, 1980. However, we suggest S. gibbidorsa is too incompletely preserved to permit even family classification. A new genus with two new species, Jurassipanorpa impunctata gen. et sp. n. and Jurassipanorpa sticta sp. n., are described based on four well-preserved specimens from the late Middle Jurassic Jiulongshan Formation of Daohugou, Inner Mongolia, China. These two new species are the earliest fossil records of Panorpidae. The new genus is erected based on a combination of forewing characters: both R1 and Rs1 with two branches, 1A reaching posterior margin of wing distad of the forking of Rs from R1, and no crossveins or only one crossvein between veins of 1A and 2A. In all four specimens, long and robust setae ranging from 0.09 to 0.38 mm in length and pointing anteriorly, are present on anal veins of forewings. The function of these setae is enigmatic. PMID:25152669

  16. Fossils from the Middle Jurassic Wanakah formation near Delta in western Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    O'Sullivan, R. B.; Carey, M.A.; Good, S.C.

    2006-01-01

    The Middle Jurassic Wanakah Formation averages about 30 m in thickness in Colorado. Fossils are sparse and include fish, ostracodes, and trace fossils. A thin (0.03-0.45 m) fossil bed near the middle of the formation extends for some 48 km along the northeast flank of the Uncompahgre Plateau near Delta. The fossil bed at one locality contains one pelecypod identified possibly as Modiolus cf. M. subimbricatus (Meek), as well as other specimens too poorly preserved for identification. Previously, Mytilus was found in the same fossil bed at another locality by C.N. Holmes. The Wanakah Formation is primarily of terrestrial origin, but the fossil bed represents a shallow-marine incursion.

  17. Vertebrate fossils and trace fossils in Upper Jurassic-Lower cretaceous red beds in the Atacama region, Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bell, C. M.; Suárez, M.

    Pterosaur, dinosaur, and crocodile bones are recorded here for the first time in Upper Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous red beds in the Atacama region east of Copiapó, Chile. Trace fossils produced by vertebrate animals include the footprints of theropod dinosaurs and the depressions of sandstone laminae interpreted as burrows and foot impressions. The fossils occur in the 1500-meter-thick Quebrada Monardes Formation, which consists predominantly of the aeolian and alluvial deposits of a semi-arid terrestrial environment. Vertebrate fossils are very rare in Chile. Dinosaur bones and footprints have previously been recorded at only seven locations, and pterosaur remains at only one location. The newly discovered dinosaur bones are the oldest to be described in Chile.

  18. Discovery of silicified lacustrine micro-fossils and stromatolites: Triassic-Jurassic Fundy Group, Nova Scotia

    SciTech Connect

    Cameron, B.

    1985-01-01

    A unique assemblage of silicified invertebrate and algal fresh-water lake fossils has been discovered in the Scots Bay Formation at the top of the Triassic-Jurassic Fundy Group of the Fundy Basin in Nova Scotia. This is important because the basins of the eastern North American Triassic-Jurassic rift system have not yielded many invertebrate and algal fossils. These new finds will contribute significantly to evolutionary, paleoecological and biostratigraphic studies of fresh-water Mesozoic deposits. Silicified fossils have been extracted from chert-bearing, mixed carbonate and siliciclastic lithologies. They include ostracodes, gastropods, rare bivalves, charaphytes (algae), stromatolites, and chert nodules cored with well-preserved woody tissues of tree trunks. Possible algal filaments occur in the silicified stromatolites. This association of charaphytes, ostracodes, microscopic gastropods and stromatolites is found in carbonate lakes today. The Scots Bay Formation is probably a near-shore carbonate facies of the more widespread silicilastic lacustrine McCoy Brook Formation. The gastropods and ostracodes, studied by SEM, indicate a Jurassic age for the Scots bay Formation, confirming speculations based on other data.

  19. Complex palaeosol ichnofabrics from Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous volcaniclastic successions of Central Patagonia, Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bedatou, Emilio; Melchor, Ricardo N.; Genise, Jorge F.

    2009-06-01

    Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous volcaniclastic continental deposits from central Patagonia, Argentina were analyzed for an integral characterization of palaeosol ichnofabrics. These units contain complex continental ichnofabrics that were also recorded in other late Jurassic-late Miocene extended volcaniclastic successions from Patagonia. According to a recently proposed method, ichnofabric, pedofabric and original bedding of selected intervals were measured separately in order to determinate the degree in which the deposits are affected by soil features besides the ichnofabrics. Four recurrent ichnofabrics were recognized in studied palaeosols: the Loloichnus, large Taenidium- Beaconites, diffuse boxwork, and Dagnichnus ichnofabrics. The Loloichnus ichnofabric is characterized by sub-vertical Loloichnusbaqueroensis and subordinate, similarly arrenged large Taenidiumbarretti and Beaconitescoronus.L.baqueroensis is a crayfish dwelling structure while large T.barretti and B.coronus are assigned to locomotion of the same organisms. Root traces are additional components of this ichnofabric. The large Taenidium- Beaconites ichnofabric is formed by large, irregular and curved T.barretti and B.coronus and by L.baqueroensis in low proportion. This ichnofabric is also assigned to crayfish activity. The diffuse boxwork ichnofabric is characterized by a pervasive and intricate three-dimensional boxwork of burrows; occasionally joined to subspherical chambers (possible Castrichnus). The diffuse boxwork is interpreted as an earthworm burrow system and the associated chambers are probably for aestivation. Rare and scattered discrete trace fossils in this ichnofabric include L.baqueroensis, T.barretti and B.coronus. The Dagnichnus ichnofabric is formed by Dagnichnustitoi, root traces and, subordinately, Loloichnusbaqueroensis, Cellicalichnusmeniscatus and tangled groups of meniscate burrows. D.titoi and C.meniscatus has been interpreted as crayfish breeding structures and the

  20. The Late Jurassic pterosaur Rhamphorhynchus, a frequent victim of the ganoid fish Aspidorhynchus?

    PubMed

    Frey, Eberhard; Tischlinger, Helmut

    2012-01-01

    Associations of large vertebrates are exceedingly rare in the Late Jurassic Solnhofen Limestone of Bavaria, Southern Germany. However, there are five specimens of medium-sized pterosaur Rhamphorhynchus that lie adjacent to the rostrum of a large individual of the ganoid fish Aspidorhynchus. In one of these, a small leptolepidid fish is still sticking in the esophagus of the pterosaur and its stomach is full of fish debris. This suggests that the Rhamphorhynchus was seized during or immediately after a successful hunt. According to the fossil record, Rhamphorhynchus frequently were accidentally seized by large Aspidorhnychus. In some cases the fibrous tissue of the wing membrane got entangled with the rostral teeth such that the fish was unable to get rid of the pterosaur. Such encounters ended fatally for both. Intestinal contents of Aspidorhynchus-type fishes are known and mostly comprise fishes and in one single case a Homoeosaurus. Obviously Rhamphorhynchus did not belong to the prey spectrum of Aspidorhynchus.

  1. Ice age at the Middle-Late Jurassic transition?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dromart, G.; Garcia, J.-P.; Picard, S.; Atrops, F.; Lécuyer, C.; Sheppard, S. M. F.

    2003-08-01

    A detailed record of sea surface temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere based on migration of marine invertebrate fauna (ammonites) and isotopic thermometry (δ18O values of shark tooth enamel) indicates a severe cooling at the Middle-Late Jurassic transition (MLJT), about 160 Ma ago. The magnitude of refrigeration (1-3°C for lower middle latitudes) and its coincidence in time with an abrupt global-scale fall of sea level documented through sequence stratigraphy are both suggestive of continental ice formation at this time. Ice sheets may have developed over the high-latitude mountainous regions of Far-East Russia. The drastic cooling just post-dated the Middle-Late Callovian widespread deposition of organic-rich marine sediments (e.g. northwestern Europe, Central Atlantic, and Arabian Peninsula). This thermal deterioration can thus be ascribed to a downdraw in atmospheric CO2 via enhanced organic carbon burial which acted as a negative feedback effect (i.e. the inverse greenhouse effect). The glacial episode of the MLJT climaxed in the Late Callovian, lasted about 2.6 Myr, and had a pronounced asymmetrical pattern composed of an abrupt (˜0.8 Myr) temperature fall opposed to a long-term (˜1.8 Myr), stepwise recovery. The glacial conditions at the MLJT reveal that atmospheric CO2 levels could have dropped temporarily to values lower than 500 ppmv during Mesozoic times.

  2. Chasing the Late Jurassic APW Monster Shift in Ontario Kimberlites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kent, D. V.; Muttoni, G.; Gee, J. S.; Kjarsgaard, B. A.

    2012-12-01

    A 30° gap was recognized in a composite APW path when global poles from predominantly igneous rocks were assembled in North American coordinates using plate reconstructions (Kent & Irving 2010 JGR). The 'monster shift' occurred between a 160-190 Ma cluster of mean poles at 75-80°N 90-110°E to a 140-145 Ma grouping centered at 60-65°N ~200°E. There are hardly any intermediate igneous poles whereas the rather divergent directions from the Late Jurassic Morrison Formation published by Steiner & Helsley (1975 GSA Bulletin) are subject to adjustments for Colorado Plateau rotation and sedimentary inclination error, neither of which are precisely known for this redbed unit sampled in Colorado. On the other hand, similar large rapid swings have been recognized in the Late Jurassic APW path for Adria (Channell et al. 2010 Paleo3), suggesting a global phenomena. In an effort to fill the data gap between ~145 and 160 Ma, we sampled accessible outcrops/subcrops of kimberlites in the Timiskaming area of Ontario, Canada, that are associated with high precision U-Pb perovskite ages (Heamon & Kjarsgaard 2000 EPSL). We report initial results from two of the intrusions: the 153.6±2.4 Ma Peddie kimberlite from outcrop and the Triple B kimberlite that was accessible by trenching and is assumed to be the same age as the nearby 153.7±1.8 Ma Seed kimberlite as delineated by aeromagnetic surveys and borings. Systematic progressive thermal demagnetization indicated in each unit a dominant characteristic component with unblocking temperatures to 575° that presumably reflect a magnetite carrier that will be checked by further rock magnetic experiments. Samples from the Peddie kimberlite had stable downward (normal polarity) magnetizations whose mean direction gives a paleopole at 73°N 184°E. In contrast, samples from the Triple B kimberlite have upward (reverse polarity) magnetizations with a well-grouped direction whose (north) paleopole is 78°N 197°E, proximal to the Peddie

  3. Revision of the Late Jurassic teleosaurid genus Machimosaurus (Crocodylomorpha, Thalattosuchia).

    PubMed

    Young, Mark T; Hua, Stéphane; Steel, Lorna; Foffa, Davide; Brusatte, Stephen L; Thüring, Silvan; Mateus, Octávio; Ruiz-Omeñaca, José Ignacio; Havlik, Philipe; Lepage, Yves; De Andrade, Marco Brandalise

    2014-10-01

    Machimosaurus was a large-bodied genus of teleosaurid crocodylomorph, considered to have been durophagous/chelonivorous, and which frequented coastal marine/estuarine ecosystems during the Late Jurassic. Here, we revise the genus based on previously described specimens and revise the species within this genus. We conclude that there were three European Machimosaurus species and another taxon in Ethiopia. This conclusion is based on numerous lines of evidence: craniomandibular, dental and postcranial morphologies; differences in estimated total body length; geological age; geographical distribution; and hypothetical lifestyle. We re-diagnose the type species Machimosaurus hugii and limit referred specimens to only those from Upper Kimmeridgian-Lower Tithonian of Switzerland, Portugal and Spain. We also re-diagnose Machimosaurus mosae, demonstrate that it is an available name and restrict the species to the uppermost Kimmeridgian-lowermost Tithonian of northeastern France. We re-diagnose and validate the species Machimosaurus nowackianus from Harrar, Ethiopia. Finally, we establish a new species, Machimosaurus buffetauti, for the Lower Kimmeridgian specimens of France and Germany (and possibly England and Poland). We hypothesize that Machimosaurus may have been analogous to the Pliocene-Holocene genus Crocodylus in having one large-bodied taxon suited to traversing marine barriers and additional, geographically limited taxa across its range.

  4. Revision of the Late Jurassic teleosaurid genus Machimosaurus (Crocodylomorpha, Thalattosuchia)

    PubMed Central

    Young, Mark T.; Hua, Stéphane; Steel, Lorna; Foffa, Davide; Brusatte, Stephen L.; Thüring, Silvan; Mateus, Octávio; Ruiz-Omeñaca, José Ignacio; Havlik, Philipe; Lepage, Yves; De Andrade, Marco Brandalise

    2014-01-01

    Machimosaurus was a large-bodied genus of teleosaurid crocodylomorph, considered to have been durophagous/chelonivorous, and which frequented coastal marine/estuarine ecosystems during the Late Jurassic. Here, we revise the genus based on previously described specimens and revise the species within this genus. We conclude that there were three European Machimosaurus species and another taxon in Ethiopia. This conclusion is based on numerous lines of evidence: craniomandibular, dental and postcranial morphologies; differences in estimated total body length; geological age; geographical distribution; and hypothetical lifestyle. We re-diagnose the type species Machimosaurus hugii and limit referred specimens to only those from Upper Kimmeridgian–Lower Tithonian of Switzerland, Portugal and Spain. We also re-diagnose Machimosaurus mosae, demonstrate that it is an available name and restrict the species to the uppermost Kimmeridgian–lowermost Tithonian of northeastern France. We re-diagnose and validate the species Machimosaurus nowackianus from Harrar, Ethiopia. Finally, we establish a new species, Machimosaurus buffetauti, for the Lower Kimmeridgian specimens of France and Germany (and possibly England and Poland). We hypothesize that Machimosaurus may have been analogous to the Pliocene–Holocene genus Crocodylus in having one large-bodied taxon suited to traversing marine barriers and additional, geographically limited taxa across its range. PMID:26064545

  5. Porosity controls in Late Jurassic algal reefs, Mississippi salt basin

    SciTech Connect

    Heydari, E.; Moore, C.H.

    1987-05-01

    Reefs associated with high-rise salt structures that were active during Late Jurassic deposition (Smackover-Haynesville) have been the target of numerous deep tests in the Mississippi Salt basin. One such test, in Wayne County, Mississippi, encountered a 24-m reef. The reef exhibited no porosity or permeability, while sequences above (21 m) and below (24 m) were dolomitized, porous, and permeable. The reef sequence consists of a facies mosaic of encrusting to columnar massive red coralline algae, laminated to stromatolitic blue-green algae(.) with associated pelleted internal sediments and other features characteristic of modern framework reefs. The reef complex exhibits a strong early marine diagenetic overprint consisting of bladed to fibrous magnesian calcite(.) cements and botryoidal masses of magnesian calcite or aragonite. The lack of discernible freshwater diagenesis and the nature of the reef framework seem to indicate deeper water conditions for reef development and subsequent early diagenesis. The associated dolomites have relict texture indicating that they were originally grainstones, perhaps derived from the reef itself. In the reef sequence, the geologic setting (relatively deep water), early marine cementation, and encrusting nature of the reef-formers produced a non-porous rock which was not susceptible to early dolomitization. However, the associated porous grainstones allowed active circulation of dolomitizing fluids (marine water.), leading to total dolomitization and a favorable reservoir facies.

  6. Late Triassic-Jurassic paleogeography and origin of Gulf of Mexico basin

    SciTech Connect

    Salvador, A.

    1987-04-01

    The basic structural and stratigraphic framework of the Gulf of Mexico Basin was established during the Late Triassic and the Jurassic. During the Late Triassic and Early Jurassic, as the North American plate started to separate from the South American and African plates, the area of the future basin was part of an extensive landmass broken by tensional grabens that were filled by red beds and volcanics. Marine deposition was restricted to embayments of the Pacific Ocean in northwestern and central Mexico. These marine embayments persisted during the early Middle Jurassic, but seawater did not reach the future Gulf of Mexico Basin until the Callovian. Widespread salt deposits known today from two separate areas of the basin resulted from this initial flooding. During the Late Jurassic, marine conditions progressively extended over increasingly larger parts of the Gulf of Mexico Basin. However, the basin was not connected to the Atlantic Ocean until late in the Jurassic. This paleogeographic reconstruction suggests that the Gulf of Mexico Basin formed as a result of the southward drift of the Yucatan continental block away from the remainder of the North American plate. The separation began in the Late Triassic, continued slowly and sporadically during the Early and Middle Jurassic, and quickened after the Middle Jurassic salt formed. As a result, the salt deposits were split into the two segments known today, and oceanic crust formed in the center of the basin. Early in the Late Jurassic, the Yucatan platform reached its present position and the Gulf of Mexico Basin was born. 14 figures.

  7. Mass extinctions in the fossil record of late Palaeozoic and Mesozoic tetrapods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benton, Michael J.

    The fossil record of tetrapods is very patchy because of the problems of preservation in terrestrial sediments, and because vertebrates are rarely very abundant. However, the fossil record of tetrapods has the advantages that it is easier to establish a phylogenetic taxonomy than for many invertebrate groups (many characters; fast evolution), and there is the potential for more detailed ecological analyses (greater knowledge of modern tetrapod ecology). The diversity of tetrapods increased during the Devonian, the Carboniferous, and the Permian, but it remained generally constant during the Triassic, the Jurassic, and the Early Cretaceous. Overall diversity then began to increase in the Late Cretaceous, and continued to do so during the Tertiary. The rapid radiation of modern tetrapod groups — frogs, salamanders, lizards, snakes, turtles, crocodiles, birds and mammals — was hardly affected by the celebrated end-Cretaceous extinction event.

  8. Fossil evidence on evolution of inner ear cochlea in Jurassic mammals.

    PubMed

    Luo, Zhe-Xi; Ruf, Irina; Schultz, Julia A; Martin, Thomas

    2011-01-07

    The coiled cochlea is a key evolutionary innovation of modern therian mammals. We report that the Late Jurassic mammal Dryolestes, a relative to modern therians, has derived bony characteristics of therian-like innervation, but its uncoiled cochlear canal is less derived than the coiled cochlea of modern therians. This suggests a therian-like innervation evolved before the fully coiled cochlea in phylogeny. The embryogenesis of the cochlear nerve and ganglion in the inner ear of mice is now known to be patterned by neurogenic genes, which we hypothesize to have influenced the formation of the auditory nerve and its ganglion in Jurassic therian evolution, as shown by their osteological correlates in Dryolestes, and by the similar base-to-apex progression in morphogenesis of the ganglion in mice, and in transformation of its canal in phylogeny. The cochlear innervation in Dryolestes is the precursory condition in the curve-to-coil transformation of the cochlea in mammalian phylogeny. This provides the timing of the evolution, and where along the phylogeny the morphogenetic genes were co-opted into patterning the cochlear innervation, and the full coiling of the cochlea in modern therians.

  9. Two new ootaxa from the late Jurassic: The oldest record of crocodylomorph eggs, from the Lourinhã Formation, Portugal

    PubMed Central

    Mateus, Octávio; Marzola, Marco; Balbino, Ausenda

    2017-01-01

    The Late Jurassic Lourinhã Formation is known for its abundant remains of dinosaurs, crocodylomorphs and other vertebrates. Among this record are nine localities that have produced either dinosaur embryos, eggs or eggshell fragments. Herein, we describe and identify the first crocodiloid morphotype eggs and eggshells from the Lourinhã Formation, from five occurrences. One clutch from Cambelas, composed of 13 eggs, eggshell fragments from Casal da Rola and Peralta, one crushed egg and eggshells from Paimogo North, and four crushed eggs as well as eggshell fragments from Paimogo South. We observed and confirmed diagnostic morphological characters for crocodiloid eggshells and which are consistent with a crocodylomorph affinity, such as the ellipsoidal shape, wedge-shaped shell units, triangular extinction under cross-polarized light, and tabular ultrastructure. This material is distinctive enough to propose two new ootaxa within the oofamily Krokolithidae, Suchoolithus portucalensis, oogen. and oosp. nov., for the material from Cambelas, the most complete clutch known for crocodiloid eggs, and Krokolithes dinophilus, oosp. nov., for the remaining material. These are the oldest crocodylomorph eggs known, extending the fossil record for this group to the Late Jurassic. Furthermore, except for the clutch from Cambelas, the material was found with theropod eggs and nests, in the other four occurrences, which seem to suggest some form of biological relationship, still unclear at this point. PMID:28273086

  10. Fossils from the Middle Jurassic of China shed light on morphology of Choristopsychidae (Insecta, Mecoptera)

    PubMed Central

    Qiao, Xiao; Shih, Chung Kun; Petrulevičius, Julian F.; Dong, Ren

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Choristopsychidae, established by Martynov in 1937 with a single isolated forewing, is a little known extinct family in Mecoptera. Since then, no new members of this enigmatic family have been described. Based on 23 well-preserved specimens with complete body and wings from the Middle Jurassic of northeastern China, we report one new genus and three new species of Choristopsychidae, two new species of the genus Choristopsyche Martynov, 1937: Choristopsyche perfecta sp. n. and Choristopsyche asticta sp. n.; one new species of Paristopsyche gen. n.: Paristopsyche angelineae sp. n.; and re-describe Choristopsyche tenuinervis Martynov, 1937. In addition, we emend the diagnoses of Choristopsychidae and Choristopsyche. Analyzing the forewing length/width ratios of representative species in Mecoptera, we confirm that choristopsychids have the lowest ratio of forewing length/width, meaning broadest forewings. These findings, the first fossil choristopsychids with well-preserved body structure and the first record of Choristopsychidae in China, shed light on the morphology of these taxa and broaden their distribution from Tajikistan to China, while increasing the diversity of Mesozoic Mecoptera in China. PMID:23950679

  11. Late Jurassic weather forecast, Four Corners area: Dry, hot, and partly sunny

    SciTech Connect

    Turner-Peterson, C.E.; Fishman, N.S. )

    1989-09-01

    Interfingering between members of the Upper Jurassic Morrison Formation and inferences based on their various environments of deposition permit interpretation of a persistent paleoclimate during the Late Jurassic in the Colorado Plateau region. Paleoclimate interpretation is based on evaporites in the Tidwell member, at the base of the Morrison; eolian deposits in the Recapture and Bluff Sandstone members; and saline, alkaline-lake deposits (which indicate high evaporation rates) in the Brushy Basin member at the top of the Morrison. Interfingering of these members with all other members of the Morrison Formation implies that a semiarid to arid climate was likely throughout Morrison time. The semiarid to arid interpretation is consistent with the global climatic zone inferred from the paleogeographic/paleotectonic setting. The Four Corners area during the Late Jurassic was in the middle latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere and thus was affected by prevailing westerly winds. A magmatic arc located several hundred kilometers to the west of the Morrison depositional basin may have caused a broad rain-shadow effect, which contributed to a dry continental climate downwind. A typical Late Jurassic day in the Four Corners area is predicted to have been hot and dry, although seasonally heavy rains probably fed intermittent streams that transported sediments into the region. Explosive eruptions of silicic volcanic ash may have darkened the skies episodically, and thus partly sunny would have been a conservative forecast.

  12. Climatic and tectonic controls on Late Triassic to Middle Jurassic sedimentation in northeastern Guangdong Province, South China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pang, Chong-Jin; Li, Zheng-Xiang; Xu, Yi-Gang; Wen, Shu-Nv; Krapež, Bryan

    2016-05-01

    Stratigraphic analyses document climatic and tectonic controls on the filling of a Late Triassic to early Middle Jurassic (T3-J2) basin that developed on top of a young orogenic belt in southeastern South China. About 2700 m of Carnian to Bajocian sedimentary rocks is documented in the Meizhou region, Guangdong Province. The Carnian to Rhaetian sequence is characterized by deltaic facies that are succeeded by Hettangian fluvial, shallow marine and volcaniclastic facies, and by Sinemurian to early Toarcian interdistributary bay and floodplain facies. The late Toarcian to Bajocian sequence comprises proximal alluvial to lacustrine facies that changed upwards to fluvial facies. Fossil assemblages indicate that climatic conditions changed from tropical/subtropical warm humid, to temperate humid, and then to hot arid through the Late Triassic to the Middle Jurassic. Climatically induced changes (e.g., in precipitation, vegetation and erosion) exerted a strong influence on sediment supply, whereas tectonics played a dominant role in stratigraphic evolution, accommodation generation, sedimentation pattern and volcanism. Tectonostratigraphic analysis shows that the T3-J2 basin was initiated on an orogenic belt during late-stage orogeny, and evolved into shallow-marine and volcanic environments and then back to terrestrial facies during the post-orogenic stage. This was followed by regional uplift and the development of a basin-and-range province. The order of these events is similar to that of the central Rocky Mountains, western North America during the Palaeogene. The Mesozoic basin of South China and the Eocene basins of the central Rocky Mountains highlight the importance of subduction-related subsidence above young and broad orogens.

  13. Late Jurassic breakup of the Proto-Caribbean and circum-global circulation across Pangea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baumgartner, Peter O.; Rojas-Agramonte, Yamirka; Sandoval-Gutierrez, Maria; Urbani, Franco; García-Delgado, Dora; Garban, Grony; Pérez Rodríguez, Mireya

    2013-04-01

    Based on earlier plate reconstructions, many authors have postulated a circum-global equatorial current system flowing through the Pangea breakup, the Tethys - Atlantic - Caribbean Seaway, to explain changes in global climate during the Middle and Late Jurassic. While a Toarcian (late Early Jurassic) breakup is well constrained for the Central Atlantic, the place and timing of initial ocean crust formation between the Americas (Gulf of Mexico or Proto-Caribbean?) is still poorly constrained. Ar/Ar ages (190 to 154 Ma) in the Tinaquillo ultramafic complex (NW-Venezuela) have been interpreted as a result of initial Proto-Caribbean rifting. However, the Tinaquillo is clearly a subconinental block and the cited ages age cannot be related with breakup. The Siquisique Ophiolite (NW-Venezuela), long known for the occurrence of Bajocian-early Bathonian ammonite fragments found in interpilow sediments, has previously been interpreted as an early Proto-Caribbean remnant. However, the ammonite fragments were recovered from blocks in a Paleogene tectonic mélange, whereas the main Siquisique ophiolite body seems to be of middle Cretaceous age, based on a few Ar/Ar dates and poorly preserved middle to late Cretaceous radiolarians, which we recovered from black cherts interbedded with volcanics. The best record of Proto-Caribbean rifting and breakup is preserved in the Guaniguanico Terrane of NW-Cuba, which represents a distal Yucatan (N-American) passive margin segment telescoped by Tertiary nappe tectonics. In this terrane middle to upper Oxfordian pelagic limestones encroach on the E-MORB type El Sabalo Basalts which represent the oldest known remnants of oceanic crust clearly identifiable as Proto-Caribbean. Older, syn-rift sediments in the Proto-Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico are known to be deltaic to shallow marine detrital, and evaporitic. Although oceanic crust seemingly started to form in the early Late Jurassic (158 my), recent plate tectonic reconstructions show

  14. Late Jurassic low latitude of Central Iran: paleogeographic and tectonic implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mattei, Massimo; Muttoni, Giovanni; Cifelli, Francesca

    2014-05-01

    The individual blocks forming present-day Central Iran are now comprised between the Zagros Neo-Tethys suture to the south and the Alborz Palaeo-Tethys suture to the north. At the end of the Palaeozoic, the Iranian blocks rifted away from the northern margin of Gondwana as consequence of the opening of the Neo-Tethys, and collided with Eurasia during the Late Triassic, giving place to the Eo-Cimmerian orogeny. From then on, the Iranian block(s) should have maintained European affinity. Modern generations of apparent polar wander paths (APWPs) show the occurrence in North American and African coordinates of a major and rapid shift in pole position (=plate shift) during the Middle-Late Jurassic. This so-called monster polar shift is predicted also for Eurasia from the North Atlantic plate circuit, but Jurassic data from this continent are scanty and problematic. Here, we present paleomagnetic data from the Kimmeridgian-Tithonian (Upper Jurassic) Garedu Formation of Iran. Paleomagnetic component directions of primary (pre-folding) age indicate a paleolatitude of deposition of 10°N ± 5° that is in excellent agreement with the latitude drop predicted for Iran from APWPs incorporating the Jurassic monster polar shift. We show that paleolatitudes calculated from these APWPs, used in conjunction with simple zonal climate belts, better explain the overall stratigraphic evolution of Iran during the Mesozoic.

  15. An enigmatic plant-eating theropod from the Late Jurassic period of Chile.

    PubMed

    Novas, Fernando E; Salgado, Leonardo; Suárez, Manuel; Agnolín, Federico L; Ezcurra, Martín D; Chimento, Nicolás R; de la Cruz, Rita; Isasi, Marcelo P; Vargas, Alexander O; Rubilar-Rogers, David

    2015-06-18

    Theropod dinosaurs were the dominant predators in most Mesozoic era terrestrial ecosystems. Early theropod evolution is currently interpreted as the diversification of various carnivorous and cursorial taxa, whereas the acquisition of herbivorism, together with the secondary loss of cursorial adaptations, occurred much later among advanced coelurosaurian theropods. A new, bizarre herbivorous basal tetanuran from the Upper Jurassic of Chile challenges this conception. The new dinosaur was discovered at Aysén, a fossil locality in the Upper Jurassic Toqui Formation of southern Chile (General Carrera Lake). The site yielded abundant and exquisitely preserved three-dimensional skeletons of small archosaurs. Several articulated individuals of Chilesaurus at different ontogenetic stages have been collected, as well as less abundant basal crocodyliforms, and fragmentary remains of sauropod dinosaurs (diplodocids and titanosaurians).

  16. The Late Jurassic Oblique Collisional Orogen of SW Japan. New Structural Data and Synthesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faure, Michel; Caridroit, Martial; Charvet, Jacques

    1986-12-01

    The structural configuration of SW Japan mainly reflects a late Jurassic-early Cretaceous orogeny. The region is divided into an inner belt and an outer belt, on the Japan sea and Pacific ocean sides respectively, by a strike-slip fault, the Median Tectonic Line (MTL). Both consist of a series of stacked nappes. The inner belt is divided into a Jurassic olistostrome known as the Tanba zone and a hinterland area comprising continental Triassic-Jurassic sediments. The Tanba zone is sliced into two units: a lower one with late Jurassic matrix and Triassic-early Jurassic radiolarite olistoliths, tectonically overthrust by an upper unit comprising an olistostrome with middle Jurassic matrix and blocks which include late Paleozoic limestone, basic lava, and radiolarite. The Tanba zone is overthrust by a Paleozoic nappe complex derived from the hinterland. The basal sole of the nappe corresponds to a peculiar unit called the ultra-Tanba zone. In the Chugoku area, the hinterland is divided into an upper nappe: the Oga nappe, formed by Permo-Carboniferous limestone and Permian clastic rocks and a lower one: the Sangun-Maizuru nappe, formed by Paleozoic high pressure (HP) metamorphics (the Sangun schists), the Permian Maizuru olistostrome, and the dismembered Paleozoic Yakuno ophiolites. In the northern part of SW Japan, the Tanba zone is in faulted contact with the circum-Hida and the Hida zones. The former is interpreted as the equivalent of the Oga and Sangun-Maizuru nappes of the Chugoku domain crushed by post Cretaceous tectonics. The latter consists of Paleozoic high temperature (HT) metamorphic rocks and late Triassic-early Jurassic granite, locally mylonitized and covered by early Jurassic sandstone. The outer belt is formed by a superficial nappe similar to the Tanba zone thrust upon a "deep domain" characterized by a synmetamorphic ductile deformation. The "deep domain" is divided into a lower unit, the Oboke unit formed by continental derived arenites and a Green

  17. Oxfordian-Kimmeridgian (Late Jurassic) reservoir sandstones in the Witch Ground Graben, U. K. North Sea

    SciTech Connect

    Harker, S.D. Ltd., Aberdeen ); Mantel, K.A. ); Morton, D.J. ); Riley, L.A. )

    1991-03-01

    Oil-bearing Late Jurassic Oxfordian-Kimmeridgian sandstones of the Sgiath and Piper formations are of major economic importance in the Witch Ground Graben. They form the reservoirs in Scott, which in 1993 will be the largest producing North Sea oil field to come on stream for more than a decade. Together with Scott, the Piper, Saltire, Tartan, Highlander, Petronella, Rob Roy, and Ivanhoe fields contained almost 2 Bbbl of recoverable reserves in these formations. The Sgiath and Piper represent two phases of Late Jurassic transgression and regression, initially represented by paralic deposited sand culminating in a wave-dominated delta sequence. The history of the Sgiath and Piper formations is reviewed and lithostratigraphic and biostratigraphic correlations presented to illustrate the distribution of the reservoir sandstones.

  18. Timing, duration, and causes for Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous anoxia in the Barents Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Georgiev, Svetoslav V.; Stein, Holly J.; Hannah, Judith L.; Xu, Guangping; Bingen, Bernard; Weiss, Hermann M.

    2017-03-01

    Re-Os isochron ages for black shales of the Hekkingen Formation in the Barents Sea constrain the onset (157.7 ± 1.3 Ma) and termination (138.8 ± 1.0 Ma), and thereby indicate a long duration (∼19 Myr) of widespread Jurassic-Cretaceous anoxia in the Arctic. Integration of these new Re-Os ages with published radiometric ages, ammonite biostratigraphy and geomagnetic polarity chrons shows shorter late Oxfordian-late Kimmeridgian and longer Berriasian stages relative to estimates in the 2012 and 2016 Geological Time Scales. Late Jurassic anoxia was likely the result of warming climate due to high atmospheric CO2 levels from increased oceanic crust production. Rising temperatures enhanced weathering and nutrient supply, increased productivity, and slowed ocean circulation before a sea-level rise brought anoxic waters onto continental shelves. Assessment of new and published Os- and Sr-isotopic data suggests that prolonged oceanic anoxia required a sustained CO2 source from fast spreading rates and/or longer subduction zones and spreading ridges to balance large burial of carbon in voluminous Upper Jurassic and Lower Cretaceous black shales.

  19. Palaeobiogeographic implications of Late Bajocian-Late Callovian (Middle Jurassic) dinoflagellate cysts from the Central Alborz Mountains, northern Iran

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghasemi-Nejad, Ebrahim; Sabbaghiyan, Hossein; Mosaddegh, Hossein

    2012-01-01

    The Dalichai Formation with an age of Late Bajocian-Late Callovian was sampled in Central Alborz Mountains of northern Iran and studied for palynological, palaeobiogeographical and palynocorrelation purposes. Palynological studies revealed diverse and well-preserved dinoflagellate cyst assemblages and lead to identification of three zones i.e., Cribroperidiniumcrispum (Late Bajocian), Dichadogonyaulaxsellwoodii (Bathonian to Early Callovian) and Ctenidodiniumcontinuum (Early to Middle Callovian) Zones. Subzone a of the D. sellwoodii Zone (Early to Middle Bathonian) was also differentiated. This biozonation corresponds to those recognised in Northwest Europe. Furthermore, the ammonoid families recorded including Phylloceratidae, Oppeliidae, Reineckeiidae, Perisphinctidae, Haploceratidae, Parkinsoniidae and Sphaeroceratidae, which confirm the Late Bajocian to Late Callovian age, are quite similar to those of Northwest Europe and the northwestern Tethys. The close similarities of the dinoflagellate cyst assemblages and ammonite fauna of northern Iran with those of Northwest Europe and the northwestern Tethys during the Middle Jurassic indicate direct but episodic marine connection and faunal exchange between the two areas.

  20. Storms and tsunamis: evidence of event sedimentation in the Late Jurassic Tendaguru Beds of southeastern Tanzania

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bussert, Robert; Aberhan, Martin

    2004-06-01

    In Late Jurassic shallow marine siliciclastic sediments of the dinosaur-bearing Tendaguru Beds from the Mandawa Basin of southeastern Tanzania we identified several event deposits. Based on an analysis of their sedimentological and palaeontological features, a storm-induced origin can be assumed for the majority of these deposits. This interpretation is in agreement with the regional palaeogeography and palaeoclimatological data, and is further supported by the widespread evidence of Late Jurassic storm-controlled sedimentation in adjacent basins along the East African margin. A particularly striking feature is a laterally extensive, conglomeratic bed with gravel components up to 30 cm in diameter, and megaripples indicating southward transport directions. The troughs between ripples are filled by cross-bedded fine-grained sandstones and siltsones with inferred transport directions to the north. Giant bedforms, a mixture of clasts of marine and continental origin, and evidence of opposite current directions suggest that this chaotically deposited sediment may have formed from a tsunami. Within the available time resolution this event is synchronous with the Morokweng impact structure in South Africa. However, because of the considerable distance of Morokweng from the Jurassic sea, direct links between both events cannot be established. Alternative mechanisms such as a landslide-generated tsunami are plausible, but not yet supported by geophysical data.

  1. A total petroleum system of the Browse Basin, Australia; Late Jurassic, Early Cretaceous-Mesozoic

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bishop, M.G.

    1999-01-01

    The Browse Basin Province 3913, offshore northern Australia, contains one important petroleum system, Late Jurassic, Early Cretaceous-Mesozoic. It is comprised of Late Jurassic through Early Cretaceous source rocks deposited in restricted marine environments and various Mesozoic reservoir rocks deposited in deep-water fan to fluvial settings. Jurassic age intraformational shales and claystones and Cretaceous regional claystones seal the reservoirs. Since 1967, when exploration began in this 105,000 km2 area, fewer than 40 wells have been drilled and only one recent oil discovery is considered potentially commercial. Prior to the most recent oil discovery, on the eastern side of the basin, a giant gas field was discovered in 1971, under a modern reef on the west side of the basin. Several additional oil and gas discoveries and shows were made elsewhere. A portion of the Vulcan sub-basin lies within Province 3913 where a small field, confirmed in 1987, produced 18.8 million barrels of oil (MMBO) up to 1995 and has since been shut in.

  2. Discovery of a short-necked sauropod dinosaur from the Late Jurassic period of Patagonia.

    PubMed

    Rauhut, Oliver W M; Remes, Kristian; Fechner, Regina; Cladera, Gerardo; Puerta, Pablo

    2005-06-02

    Sauropod dinosaurs are one of the most conspicuous groups of Mesozoic terrestrial vertebrates. They show general trends towards an overall increase in size and elongation of the neck, by means of considerable elongation of the length of individual vertebrae and a cervical vertebra count that, in some cases, increases to 19 (ref. 1). The long neck is a particular hallmark of sauropod dinosaurs and is usually regarded as a key feeding adaptation. Here we describe a new dicraeosaurid sauropod, from the latest Jurassic period of Patagonia, that has a particularly short neck. With a neck that is about 40% shorter than in other known dicraeosaurs, this taxon demonstrates a trend opposite to that seen in most sauropods and indicates that the ecology of dicraeosaurids might have differed considerably from that of other sauropods. The new taxon indicates that there was a rapid radiation and dispersal of dicraeosaurids in the Late Jurassic of the Southern Hemisphere, after the separation of Gondwana from the northern continents by the late Middle Jurassic.

  3. A depositional model for late Jurassic Reef Building in the East Texas Basin

    SciTech Connect

    Norwood, E.M. ); Brinton, L. )

    1996-01-01

    The authors propose a depositional setting for the Upper Jurassic reef facies occurring at the upper Cotton Valley Lime, (Gilmer) sequence boundary in the East Texas Basin. The development of uncommonly thick, microbially bound reefal buildups positioned near the western margin of the basin was controlled by sea-level variations and gravity faulting, suggested to be concurrent. Gas bearing reefs occur as isolated features along faulted margins and have been successfully located using 3-D seismic. Reefs of this type and age appear to be rare in their occurrence worldwide. Structurally generated circumstances facilitated margin bypass of terrigenous clastics shed from the north and west. Protection from clastic influx contributed to conditions required for development of the 400 feet of reefal buildup penetrated by the Marathon Oil Company Poth No. 1 during early 1993. Core from this well provides insight into character, composition, and depositional setting of reefs along the western flank of the East Texas Basin during Late Jurassic time.

  4. A depositional model for late Jurassic Reef Building in the East Texas Basin

    SciTech Connect

    Norwood, E.M.; Brinton, L.

    1996-12-31

    The authors propose a depositional setting for the Upper Jurassic reef facies occurring at the upper Cotton Valley Lime, (Gilmer) sequence boundary in the East Texas Basin. The development of uncommonly thick, microbially bound reefal buildups positioned near the western margin of the basin was controlled by sea-level variations and gravity faulting, suggested to be concurrent. Gas bearing reefs occur as isolated features along faulted margins and have been successfully located using 3-D seismic. Reefs of this type and age appear to be rare in their occurrence worldwide. Structurally generated circumstances facilitated margin bypass of terrigenous clastics shed from the north and west. Protection from clastic influx contributed to conditions required for development of the 400 feet of reefal buildup penetrated by the Marathon Oil Company Poth No. 1 during early 1993. Core from this well provides insight into character, composition, and depositional setting of reefs along the western flank of the East Texas Basin during Late Jurassic time.

  5. Late Holocene eolian fossilization of Podzols in Northeastern Germany

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hirsch, Florian; Raab, Thomas; Schneider, Anna; Wechler, Klaus-Peter

    2016-04-01

    The North European lowland has been formed by glacial and periglacial processes in the Late Pleistocene. Multiple reshaping since the Late Glacial considerably changed the landscape up to and including especially historic times. Sediment sequences and (fossilized) soils can improve our understanding of Late Quaternary landscape development, but mapping of buried soils and surfaces is often limited to single outcrops. Ongoing archaeological rescue excavations in the pre-field of the open-cast mine Cottbus-Nord (northeastern Germany) with dense excavation trenches in an about 10 ha dune and drift sand area reveal multilayered sediment sequences with fossilized soils and sediments from the Late Pleistocene to the Late Holocene. Archaeological findings ranging from Mesolithic flint stones to an about 200 year old ceramics in eolian sediments covering plow horizons and wheel tracks suggest that eolian relocation of sandy material was intensive about 200 years ago. Still unpublished OSL dating underline the intense eolian activity. Recent studies showed that between the 15Th to the 19Th century an iron smelter 5 km to the west of our study site was supplied with charcoal, which was produced in a forest 5 km east to our study site. Our current findings about Late Holocene eolian activity raise the question if this eolian reshaping of the landscape is connected with the operation of the iron smelter either directly by transport or bog iron ore winning or indirectly by population pressure caused by the prospering iron smelter. Our ongoing research indicates, that already for historic land-use off-site effects causing further landscape changes have to be considered.

  6. Bulk Geochemical Data of Fossil Wood from the Middle Jurassic Clays of Poland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smolarek, Justyna

    2012-01-01

    Macroscopic observations, microscopic studies and literature data revealed that Middle Jurassic wood from Częstochowa area has a different state of preservation, and various types and degrees of mineralization and oxidation. Obtained results of organic matter fractionation illustrate a clear domination of polar fraction in the obtained extracts revealing low thermal maturity stage. Total organic carbon (TOC) values for analysed samples are in a wide range from 1.06% to 68.50%. The highest amount of TOC were measured in not or poorly mineralized wood samples but most of them are mineralized wood fragments, showing the TOC values in the range of 2% - 10%. Percentage content of carbonate in fossil wood constitute in a wide range from less than 1% CaCO3 to above 85% CaCO3. The resulting percentage of the total sulfur content is very varied and do not show convergence with other data such as TOC, carbonate content, etc and is most probable connected with pyritisation range. Unlike the Middle Jurassic clay samples, where long-chain and short-chain n-alkanes occur in similar concentrations, in wood samples always short-chain n-alkanes dominated, in the range from 15 to 23 carbon atoms in molecule. The values of the CPI are generally higher than 1 which indicates the contribution of organic matter derived from higher plant waxes, which are characteristic of e.g. needles from gymnosperm plants. Under the influence of post - diagenetic oxidation in mineralized wood samples distribution of n-alkanes is changing. Diaster-13(17)-enes with 28 and 29 carbon atoms in molecule are present in the wood samples, while those with 29 atoms strongly prevail. Makroskopowe obserwacje, mikroskopowe badania i dane literaturowe wykazały, że środkowojurajskie drewno z okolic Częstochowy ma różny stan zachowania oraz różne rodzaje i stopień mineralizacji oraz utlenienia. Uzyskane wyniki rozdziału frakcyjnego pokazują wyraźną przewagę frakcji polarnej w badanych ekstraktach. Warto

  7. The Tendaguru formation of southeastern Tanzania, East Africa: An alternating Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous palaeoenvironment of exceptional status

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sames, B.

    2009-04-01

    Dinosaur remains have inspired considerable scientific interest in the Tendaguru formation of southeastern Tanzania during the 20th century; however, this formation is exceptional in many other respects. The Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous deposits of the Tendaguru formation in the southwestern Tethys are unique because they represent a marginal marine palaeoenvironment with nonmarine faunal and floral content. It is a threefold succession of marginal marine to terrestrial, carbonate-siliciclastic sediments with cyclic character, consisting of three transgressive-regressive cycles. Revisitation of the type locality (the Tendaguru, a hill approximately 60km northwest of the town of Lindi) by a German-Tanzanian expedition in summer 2000 (Heinrich et al., 2001) resulted in a new standard section (hitherto unpublished, the informal terminology is indicated by the use of lower case in Tendaguru formation), a refined environmental model (Aberhan et al., 2002) and many new insights towards its geology (with evidence of event-sedimentation, Bussert and Aberhan, 2004), biostratigraphy and a better understanding of the Tendaguru palaeo-ecosystems and the palaeoclimate. Within the scope of the designation of a new standard section at the type locality, calcareous microfossils (ostracods, charophytes) have been described to supplement the ongoing discussion about the age and palaeoecology of the Tendaguru formation (Sames, 2008). Although only a few unevenly distributed layers across the section produced calcareous microfossils, the results are very promising. A total of 40 ostracode and 2 charophyte taxa could be distinguished. The non-marine part of the ostracod fauna provides an important contribution to the documentation of Purbeck/Wealden-type nonmarine palaeoenvironments and its microfaunas and -floras previously unknown from East Africa. The marine faunal part belongs to a relatively endemic southern (Gondwana) fauna. Together with other fossil groups, the

  8. Fossil woods from the Late Cretaceous Aachen Formation.

    PubMed

    Meijer

    2000-11-01

    Silicified fossil woods from the Late Cretaceous (Santonian) Aachen Formation of northeast Belgium, southernmost Netherlands and adjacent Germany were investigated. Gymnosperms dominate this assemblage: Taxodioxylon gypsaceum, T. cf. gypsaceum, T. cf. albertense (all Taxodiaceae), Dammaroxylon aachenense sp. nov. (Araucariaceae), Pinuxylon sp. (Pinaceae), and Scalaroxylon sp. (Cycad or Cycadeoid). Angiosperms are minor constituents: Nyssoxylon sp. (Nyssaceae?, Cornaceae?), Mastixioxylon symplocoides sp. nov. (Mastixiaceae?, Symplocaceae?), Plataninium decipiens (Platanaceae) and Paraphyllanthoxylon cf. marylandense (Anacardiaceae?, Burseraceae?, Lauraceae?).The composition of this assemblage and the anatomy of the woods indicate a seasonal and humid warm-temperate to subtropical climate.

  9. Timing of Carbon isotope excursions during the late Triassic and early Jurassic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yager, J. A.; West, A. J.; Corsetti, F. A.; Berelson, W.; Bottjer, D. J.; Rosas, S.

    2015-12-01

    The emplacement of the Central Atlantic Magmatic Province during the late Triassic and early Jurassic is implicated in the end-Triassic mass extinction and is associated with dramatic increases in atmospheric pCO2. Changes in the isotopic composition of CO2 as recorded on land and in the ocean have been observed in many sections worldwide, but the timing and causes of the changes are debated. Recent high-resolution ash bed dating (Schaltegger et al., 2008; Schoene et al., 2010; Guex et al., 2012; Wotzlaw et al., 2014) from a continuous Rhaetian-Hettangian section near Levanto, Peru, provide an opportunity to understand the duration of these carbon cycle disruptions, and ammonite biostratigraphy allows comparison to other sections. We measured % organic carbon and % inorganic carbon along with δ13Corganic and δ13Ccarbonate at the section near Levanto. We find a series of δ13Corganic excursions that are similar to those found in other Triassic-Jurassic successions, both from the Tethyan (St. Audrie's Bay, UK) and Panthalassic oceans (Kennecott Point, CAN), pointing to the global extent of these changes. At Levanto, we can identify a brief, initial positive carbon isotope excursion followed first by a sharp negative excursion that coincides with the last appearance of Triassic ammonites, and then a more extended positive carbon isotope excursion that extends into the initial Jurassic recovery. Using the ash bed dates from Levanto, we are able for the first time to estimate robustly the duration of each carbon isotope excursion across the Triassic-Jurassic interval. These estimates of durations aid in our understanding of timing and causes of carbon cycle perturbations associated with the emplacement of CAMP and its relation to mass extinction.

  10. New fossil record of a Jurassic pterosaur from Neuquen Basin, Vaca Muerta Formation, Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Codorniú, Laura; Garrido, Alberto

    2013-12-01

    Discoveries of Jurassic pterosaurs in the Southern Hemisphere are extremely unusual. In Argentina, pterosaurs from the Upper Jurassic (Tithonian) have only been found in the Northwest of Patagonia (Neuquén Basin). These come from marine deposits and three specimens have been discovered up to the present. In this paper, we report a new finding from the Neuquén Basin. This material is identified as a tibiotarsus, which probably belonged to an osteologically adult individual and represents a new species of a pterodactyloid pterosaur of medium size. This discovery provides new evidence that at least two different species of pterodactyloid pterosaurs may have coexisted in Los Catutos Member, Vaca Muerta Formation, from the shallow marine deposits of the Neuquén Basin.

  11. Scenes from the past: initial investigation of early jurassic vertebrate fossils with multidetector CT.

    PubMed

    Bolliger, Stephan A; Ross, Steffen; Thali, Michael J; Hostettler, Bernhard; Menkveld-Gfeller, Ursula

    2012-01-01

    The study of fossils permits the reconstruction of past life on our planet and enhances our understanding of evolutionary processes. However, many fossils are difficult to recognize, being encased in a lithified matrix whose tedious removal is required before examination is possible. The authors describe the use of multidetector computed tomography (CT) in locating, identifying, and examining fossil remains of crocodilians (Mesosuchia) embedded in hard shale, all without removing the matrix. In addition, they describe how three-dimensional (3D) reformatted CT images provided details that were helpful for extraction and preparation. Multidetector CT can help experienced paleontologists localize and characterize fossils in the matrix of a promising rock specimen in a nondestructive manner. Moreover, with its capacity to generate highly accurate 3D images, multidetector CT can help determine whether the fossils warrant extraction and can assist in planning the extraction process. Thus, multidetector CT may well become an invaluable tool in the field of paleoradiology.

  12. Late Jurassic ocean anoxic event: evidence from voluminous sulphide deposition and preservation in the Panthalassa

    PubMed Central

    Nozaki, Tatsuo; Kato, Yasuhiro; Suzuki, Katsuhiko

    2013-01-01

    The historically productive copper-bearing Besshi-type sulphide deposits in the Japanese accretionary complex were formed as volcanogenic massive sulphide deposits on the deep-sea floor of the Panthalassa Ocean. Here we report that eleven typical Besshi-type deposits yielded Re-Os isochron ages around 150 Ma (148.4 ± 1.4 Ma from the composite isochron) in Late Jurassic time. This date coincides with the lowest marine 87Sr/86Sr ratio and highest atmospheric CO2 concentration of the past 300 million years. We infer that intense mid-ocean ridge hydrothermal and volcanic activity in the Late Jurassic produced huge sulphide deposits and large emissions of CO2 gas, leading to global warming and a stratified Panthalassa Ocean with anoxic deep seas that favored preservation of sulphides in the pelagic environment. The emergence of ocean anoxia triggered by seafloor volcanism is also consistent with a positive δ13C excursion and widespread deposition of petroleum source rocks and black shales. PMID:23712471

  13. Late Jurassic ocean anoxic event: evidence from voluminous sulphide deposition and preservation in the Panthalassa.

    PubMed

    Nozaki, Tatsuo; Kato, Yasuhiro; Suzuki, Katsuhiko

    2013-01-01

    The historically productive copper-bearing Besshi-type sulphide deposits in the Japanese accretionary complex were formed as volcanogenic massive sulphide deposits on the deep-sea floor of the Panthalassa Ocean. Here we report that eleven typical Besshi-type deposits yielded Re-Os isochron ages around 150 Ma (148.4 ± 1.4 Ma from the composite isochron) in Late Jurassic time. This date coincides with the lowest marine (87)Sr/(86)Sr ratio and highest atmospheric CO2 concentration of the past 300 million years. We infer that intense mid-ocean ridge hydrothermal and volcanic activity in the Late Jurassic produced huge sulphide deposits and large emissions of CO2 gas, leading to global warming and a stratified Panthalassa Ocean with anoxic deep seas that favored preservation of sulphides in the pelagic environment. The emergence of ocean anoxia triggered by seafloor volcanism is also consistent with a positive δ(13)C excursion and widespread deposition of petroleum source rocks and black shales.

  14. The rediscovery and redescription of the holotype of the Late Jurassic turtle Plesiochelys etalloni

    PubMed Central

    Deschamps, Sylvie; Claude, Julien

    2014-01-01

    Plesiochelyidae are a major component of Late Jurassic shallow marine environments throughout Europe. However, the taxonomy of plesiochelyid turtles is rather confused. Over the years, many taxa have been synonymized with Plesiochelys etalloni, one of the first described species. However, the holotype of P. etalloni (and only specimen known from Lect, the type locality) was lost for more than 150 years. This specimen has been recently rediscovered in the collections of the Musée d’archéologie du Jura in Lons-le-Saunier, France. For the first time since its original description in 1857, the holotype of P. etalloni is redescribed and compared to relevant material. The taxonomic status of this taxon is revised accordingly. Based on the morphology of the newly rediscovered holotype and on a reassessment of specimens from Solothurn (Switzerland), the species P. solodurensis, P. sanctaeverenae and P. langii are synonymized with P. etalloni. Known skull-shell associations for P. etalloni are re-evaluated in light of the new morphological information available since the rediscovery of this holotype specimen. Finally, we confirm that Plesiochelys is represented by a single species in the Late Jurassic of the Jura Mountains. PMID:24688842

  15. The first fossil spider (Araneae: Palpimanoidea) from the Lower Jurassic (Grimmen, Germany).

    PubMed

    Selden, Paul A; Dunlop, Jason A

    2014-12-11

    The first Lower Jurassic (Lias) spider is described as Seppo koponeni n. gen. & n. sp. from a single female specimen from Grimmen, Germany. It most likely belongs to the Palpimanoidea, on account of the presence of cheliceral peg teeth and other features consistent with palpimanoid families, though its familial placement is uncertain. Its presence in the region at that time concurs with ideas about the more widespread presence of palpimanoids across the world in the early Mesozoic, before the break-up of Pangaea.

  16. Degradation processes and consolidation of Late Jurassic sandstone dinosaur tracks in museum environment (Museum of Lourinhã, Portugal)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leal, Sofia; mateus, Octavio; Tomas, Carla; Dionisio, Amelia

    2014-05-01

    The current study aims to conciliate conservation and restoration museology diagnosis with paleontological and geological curational needs and has, as subject of study, dinosaur footprints (vertebrates fossils). The footprints have been being exposed since 2004 in the paleontology hall of the Museum of Lourinhã, Portugal, and are part of a important paleontological collection of Late Jurassic vertebrate fossils from Lourinhã Formation. Presently, it is considered a unique heritage in danger of disappearing due to high decay level of disaggregation of its geological structure. The dinosaur footprints, (ML557) found, more precisely, on a coastline cliff in Lourinhã, Porto das Barcas, Lagido do Forno (coordinate 39° 14. 178'N, 9° 20. 397'W), Jurassic period, on the 5th of June 2001, by Jesper Milàn. This cliff of high slope presents sedimentary stratigraphic characteristics of a sandstone/siltstone of gray and red colors, by the '' Munsell scale and Color Chart''. Geological the tracks are Late Jurassic in age, and colected in the Lourinhã Formation, Praia Azul Member, of the Lusitanian Basin. There are three natural infills tridactyl tracks, possibly ascribed to ornithopod, a bipedal herbivore, resultant of a left foot movement, right and left. Footprints have 300-400mm of wide and 330-360mm of height with round fingers, which are elongated due to some degradation/erosion. In 2001, the footprints were collected from the field, cleaned, consolidated and glued in the laboratory of the Museum of Lourinhã before being exhibited in a museum display. Stone matrix was removed and a consolidation product applied, probably a polyvinyl acetate, of the brand Plexigum. The footprint with broken central digit was glued with an epoxy resin, Araldite. Both applied products were confirmed by analysis of µ-FTIR (Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy) and both presented colour change and detachment surface problems. After collecting and storing, in 2004, footprints were

  17. Late Pleistocene Vertebrates and Other Fossils from Epiguruk, Northwestern Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamilton, Thomas D.; Ashley, Gall M.; Reed, Katherine M.; Schweger, Charles E.

    1993-05-01

    Sediments exposed at Epiguruk, a large cutbank on the Kobuk River about 170 km inland from Kotzebue Sound, record multiple episodes of glacial-age alluviation followed by interstadial downcutting and formation of paleosols. Vertebrate remains from Epiguruk include mammoth, bison, caribou, an equid, a canid, arctic ground squirrel, lemmings, and voles. Radiocarbon ages of bone validated by concordant ages of peat and wood span the interval between about 37,000 and 14,000 yr B.P. The late Pleistocene pollen record is dominated by Cyperaceae, with Artemisia, Salix, Betula, and Gramineae also generally abundant. The fossil record from Epiguruk indicates that the Kobuk River valley supported tundra vegetation with abundant riparian willows during middle and late Wisconsin time. Large herbivores were present during the height of late Wisconsin glaciation as well as during its waning stage and the preceding interstadial interval. The Kobuk River valley would have been a favorable refugium for plants, animals, and possibly humans throughout the last glaciation.

  18. Late Pleistocene Vertebrates and Other Fossils from Epiguruk, Northwestern Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hamilton, T.D.; Ashley, G.M.; Reed, K.M.; Schweger, C.E.

    1993-01-01

    Sediments exposed at Epiguruk, a large cutbank on the Kobuk River about 170 km inland from Kotzebue Sound, record multiple episodes of glacial-age alluviation followed by interstadial downcutting and formation of paleosols. Vertebrate remains from Epiguruk include mammoth, bison, caribou, an equid, a canid, arctic ground squirrel, lemmings, and voles. Radiocarbon ages of bone validated by concordant ages of peat and wood span the interval between about 37,000 and 14,000 yr B.P. The late Pleistocene pollen record is dominated by Cyperaceae, with Artemisia, Salix, Betula, and Gramineae also generally abundant. The fossil record from Epiguruk indicates that the Kobuk River valley supported tundra vegetation with abundant riparian willows during middle and late Wisconsin time. Large herbivores were present during the height of late Wisconsin glaciation as well as during its waning stage and the preceding interstadial interval. The Kobuk River valley would have been a favorable refugium for plants, animals, and possibly humans throughout the last glaciation.

  19. Trace fossils from Jurassic lacustrine turbidites of the Anyao Formation (central China) and their environmental and evolutionary significance

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Buatois, L.A.; Mangano, M.G.; Wu, X.; Zhang, G.

    1996-01-01

    -turbidite burrowing activity. The development of less specialized strategies than those displayed by deep-marine ichnofaunas may be related to less stable conditions, typical of lake settings. Oxygenation, energy, sedimentation rate (both event and background), food supply, soft-sediment deformation and erosion rate have mainly influenced trace-fossil distribution. Turbidity currents would have ensured oxygen (as well as food) supply to deep lake settings, thus allowing the establishment of a moderately diverse biota. Biogenic structures were mostly confined to the outer, low energy areas. High sedimentation rates and strong erosion precluded preservation of ichnofossils in inner lobe settings. The Anyao ichnofauna is of significance in furthering knowledge of the colonization of deep lakes throughout the stratigraphic record and in identification of additional nonmarine ichnofacies. The analyzed ichnofauna resembles late Paleozoic lacustrine assemblages described from different localities around the world and is regarded as a Mesozoic example of the Mermia ichnofacies. However, when compared with Paleozoic assemblages, the Anyao ichnofauna shows a clear dominance of burrows over surface trails, deeper burrowing penetration, larger size, and presence of relatively more complex structures. The high burrow/surface trail ratio may be indicative of lower preservation potential in the latter, thus reflecting a tap-honomic overprint. In contrast to the Paleozoic examples, the establishment of a relatively well-developed lacustrine infauna may have precluded preservation of surface trails. Burrower activity probably obliterated biogenic structures formed close to the sediment-water interface. ?? 1996 OPA (Overseas Publishers Association) Amsterdam B.V. Published in The Netherlands by Harwood Academic Publishers GmbH.

  20. Hadley circulation and precipitation changes controling black shale deposition in the Late Jurassic Boreal Seaway

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Armstrong, Howard A.; Wagner, Thomas; Herringshaw, Liam G.; Farnsworth, Alexander J.; Lunt, Daniel J.; Harland, Melise; Imber, Jonathan; Loptson, Claire; Atar, Elizabeth F. L.

    2016-08-01

    New climate simulations using the HadCM3L model with a paleogeography of the Late Jurassic (155.5 Ma) and proxy-data corroborate that warm and wet tropical-like conditions reached as far north as the UK sector of the Jurassic Boreal Seaway (~35°N). This is associated with a northern hemisphere Jurassic Hadley cell and an intensified subtropical jet which both extend significantly poleward than in the modern (July-September). Deposition of the Kimmeridge Clay Formation (KCF) occurred in the shallow, storm-dominated, epeiric Boreal Seaway. High-resolution paleo-environmental proxy data from the Kimmeridge Clay Formation (KCF; ~155-150 Ma), UK, are used to test for the role of tropical atmospheric circulation on meter-scale heterogeneities in black shale deposition. Proxy and model data show that the most organic-rich section (eudoxus to mid-hudlestoni zones) is characterized by a positive δ13Corg excursion and up to 37 wt % total organic carbon (%TOC). Orbital modulation of organic carbon burial primarily in the long eccentricity power band combined with a clear positive correlation between %TOC carbonate-free and the kaolinite/illite ratio supports peak organic carbon burial under the influence of very humid climate conditions, similar to the modern tropics. This reinterpretation of large-scale climate relationships, supported by independent modeling and geological data, has profound implications for atmospheric circulation patterns and processes affecting marine productivity and organic carbon burial further north along the Boreal Seaway, including the Arctic.

  1. Molecular fossils and the late rise of oxygenic photosynthesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brocks, J. J.

    2012-04-01

    Biomarkers are the molecular fossils of natural products such as lipids and pigments. They can yield a wealth of information about early microbial ecosystems and are particularly valuable when preserved in > 1 billion-year old (Ga) sedimentary rocks where conventional fossils are often lacking. Therefore, in 1999, the detection of traces of biomarkers in 2.5 to 2.7 Ga shales from Western Australia (Brocks et al. 1999, Summons et al. 1999) was celebrated as a breakthrough. The discovery, which was later confirmed by several independent studies, led to far reaching conclusions about the early evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis (Summons et al. 1999) and ancestral eukaryotes (Brocks et al. 1999). However, here we present new data based on the carbon isotopic composition of solidified hydrocarbons (Rasmussen et al. 2008) and the spatial distribution of liquid hydrocarbons within the original 2.5 and 2.7 Ga shales (Brocks 2011) that demonstrate that the molecules must have entered the rocks much later in Earth's history and therefore provide no information about the Archean (>2.5 Ga) biosphere or environment. The elimination of the Archean biomarker data has immense implications for our understanding of Earth's early biosphere. 2-Methylhopanes have been interpreted as evidence for the existence of cyanobacteria at 2.7 Ga, about ~300 million years before the atmosphere became mildly oxygenated in the Great Oxidation Event (GOE; between 2.45 and 2.32 Ga). Now, the oldest direct fossil evidence for cyanobacteria reverts back to 2.15 Ga, and the most ancient robust sign for oxygenic photosynthesis becomes the GOE itself. Moreover, the presence of steranes has been interpreted as evidence for the existence of ancestral eukaryotes at 2.7 Ga. However, without the steranes, the oldest fossil evidence for the domain falls into the range ~1.78-1.68 Ga. Recognition that the biomarkers from Archean rocks are not of Archean age renders permissive hypotheses about a late evolution

  2. Thalassemys bruntrutana n. sp., a new coastal marine turtle from the Late Jurassic of Porrentruy (Switzerland), and the paleobiogeography of the Thalassemydidae

    PubMed Central

    Anquetin, Jérémy; Billon-Bruyat, Jean-Paul

    2015-01-01

    Background. The Swiss Jura Mountains are a key region for Late Jurassic eucryptodiran turtles. Already in the mid 19th century, the Solothurn Turtle Limestone (Solothurn, NW Switzerland) yielded a great amount of Kimmeridgian turtles that are traditionally referred to Plesiochelyidae, Thalassemydidae, and Eurysternidae. In the past few years, fossils of these coastal marine turtles were also abundantly discovered in the Kimmeridgian of the Porrentruy region (NW Switzerland). These findings include numerous sub-complete shells, out of which we present two new specimens of Thalassemys (Thalassemydidae) in this study. Methods. We compare the new material from Porrentruy to the type species Th. hugii, which is based on a well preserved specimen from the Solothurn Turtle Limestone (Solothurn, Switzerland). In order to improve our understanding of the paleogeographic distribution of Thalassemys, anatomical comparisons are extended to Thalassemys remains from other European countries, notably Germany and England. Results. While one of the two Thalassemys specimens from Porrentruy can be attributed to Th. hugii, the other specimen represents a new species, Th. bruntrutana n. sp. It differs from Th. hugii by several features: more elongated nuchal that strongly thickens anterolaterally; wider vertebral scales; proportionally longer plastron; broader and less inclined xiphiplastron; wider angle between scapular process and acromion process. Our results show that Th. hugii and Th. bruntrutana also occur simultaneously in the Kimmeridgian of Solothurn as well as in the Kimmeridgian of England (Kimmeridge Clay). This study is an important step towards a better understanding of the paleobiogeographic distribution of Late Jurassic turtles in Europe. PMID:26468437

  3. Late Triassic to middle Jurassic history of the north-central high Atlas, Morocco

    SciTech Connect

    Letsch, D.K.

    1988-02-01

    The Lower and Middle Jurassic (Liassic and Dogger) rocks in the north-central High Atlas and on the adjacent Oran Meseta, Morocco, were deposited on the subsiding margin of the Triassic/Jurassic High Atlas trough. This and the Middle Atlas trough formed as a result of rifting of the Moroccan Meseta and oran Meseta from the Saharan craton during initial stages of the opening of the modern Atlantic. The Tethys seaway flooded these troughs in the early Liassic, resulting in deposition of several thousand meters of liassic and Dogger limestone and marlstone. The deepening-upward Liassic section in the north-central High Atlas reflects the rapid development of the short-lived High Atlas trough, which formed in the Late Triassic-Early Liassic flooding by the Tethys established carbonate tidal flats on the Oran Meseta, a shelf margin at the basin's edge, and slope and basin-floor deposition within the trough. Rapid subsidence of the margin brought slope and basin floor sediments on top of the platform margin as the trough developed. Subsidence slowed toward the end of the Lias, resulting in progradation of the shelf-margin environments. At the end of the Lias, a portion of the margin slid into the basin, followed by debris shed off the slide scar. Continued marlstone and limestone deposition filled the basin during the Dogger, marking the end of rift-related sedimentation in the High Atlas trough.

  4. A Jurassic mammal from South America.

    PubMed

    Rauhut, Oliver W M; Martin, Thomas; Ortiz-Jaureguizar, Edgardo; Puerta, Pablo

    2002-03-14

    The Jurassic period is an important stage in early mammalian evolution, as it saw the first diversification of this group, leading to the stem lineages of monotremes and modern therian mammals. However, the fossil record of Jurassic mammals is extremely poor, particularly in the southern continents. Jurassic mammals from Gondwanaland are so far only known from Tanzania and Madagascar, and from trackway evidence from Argentina. Here we report a Jurassic mammal represented by a dentary, which is the first, to our knowledge, from South America. The tiny fossil from the Middle to Late Jurassic of Patagonia is a representative of the recently termed Australosphenida, a group of mammals from Gondwanaland that evolved tribosphenic molars convergently to the Northern Hemisphere Tribosphenida, and probably gave rise to the monotremes. Together with other mammalian evidence from the Southern Hemisphere, the discovery of this new mammal indicates that the Australosphenida had diversified and were widespread in Gondwanaland well before the end of the Jurassic, and that mammalian faunas from the Southern Hemisphere already showed a marked distinction from their northern counterparts by the Middle to Late Jurassic.

  5. Multivariate and Cladistic Analyses of Isolated Teeth Reveal Sympatry of Theropod Dinosaurs in the Late Jurassic of Northern Germany

    PubMed Central

    Gerke, Oliver; Wings, Oliver

    2016-01-01

    Remains of theropod dinosaurs are very rare in Northern Germany because the area was repeatedly submerged by a shallow epicontinental sea during the Mesozoic. Here, 80 Late Jurassic theropod teeth are described of which the majority were collected over decades from marine carbonates in nowadays abandoned and backfilled quarries of the 19th century. Eighteen different morphotypes (A—R) could be distinguished and 3D models based on micro-CT scans of the best examples of all morphotypes are included as supplements. The teeth were identified with the assistance of discriminant function analysis and cladistic analysis based on updated datamatrices. The results show that a large variety of theropod groups were present in the Late Jurassic of northern Germany. Identified specimens comprise basal Tyrannosauroidea, as well as Allosauroidea, Megalosauroidea cf. Marshosaurus, Megalosauridae cf. Torvosaurus and probably Ceratosauria. The formerly reported presence of Dromaeosauridae in the Late Jurassic of northern Germany could not be confirmed. Some teeth of this study resemble specimens described as pertaining to Carcharodontosauria (morphotype A) and Abelisauridae (morphotype K). This interpretation is however, not supported by discriminant function analysis and cladistic analysis. Two smaller morphotypes (N and Q) differ only in some probably size-related characteristics from larger morphotypes (B and C) and could well represent juveniles of adult specimens. The similarity of the northern German theropods with groups from contemporaneous localities suggests faunal exchange via land-connections in the Late Jurassic between Germany, Portugal and North America. PMID:27383054

  6. Dysaerobic trace fossils and ichnofabrics in the upper Jurassic Kimmeridge Clay of southern England

    SciTech Connect

    Wignall, P.B. )

    1991-06-01

    The trace fossil suite from the Kimmeridge Clay is calibrated against an oxygen gradient derived from previous geochemical, lithological and shelly macrofaunal studies. Several soft-bodied trace markers appear to have tolerated lower oxygen tensions than even the hardiest shelly benthic macrofauna-a common occurrence in both recent and ancient dysaerobic settings. Lowest diversity trace fossil assemblages consist of Astacimorphichnus etchesi (new ichnotaxon), a small endostratal pascichnial trace attributed to pioneering polychaete populations. Ekdale and Masons' (1988) contention that fodinichnia dominate the lowest diversity and lowest oxygen settings is not substantiated as the only example of this feeding strategy, Rhizocorallium irregulare, is encountered in moderately diverse trace fossil assemblages associated with a low diversity shelly macrofauna. Upper dysaerobic conditions are characterized by the development of a surface mixed layer and the consequent destruction of fine lamination. Tiering is only developed under normal oxygen conditions with Chondrites as the deepest trace. In contrast to many previous studies, Chondrites is never found in dysaerobic facies.

  7. Fauna and Predator-Prey Relationships of Ettling, an Actinopterygian Fish-Dominated Konservat-Lagerstätte from the Late Jurassic of Southern Germany

    PubMed Central

    Ebert, Martin; Kölbl-Ebert, Martina; Lane, Jennifer A.

    2015-01-01

    The newly recognized Konservat-Lagerstätte of Ettling (Bavaria), field site of the Jura-Museum Eichstätt (JME), is unique among Late Jurassic plattenkalk basins (Solnhofen region) in its abundant, extremely well preserved fossil vertebrates, almost exclusively fishes. We report actinopterygians (ginglymodins, pycnodontiforms, halecomorphs, aspidorynchiforms, “pholidophoriforms,” teleosts); turtles; and non-vertebrates (echinoderms, arthropods, brachiopods, mollusks, jellyfish, sponges, biomats, plants) in a current faunal list. Ettling has yielded several new fish species (Bavarichthys incognitus; Orthogonikleithrus hoelli; Aspidorhynchus sanzenbacheri; Macrosemimimus fegerti). Upper and lower Ettling strata differ in faunal content, with the lower dominated by the small teleost Orthogonikleithrus hoelli (absent from the upper layers, where other prey fishes, Leptolepides sp. and Tharsis sp., occur instead). Pharyngeal and stomach contents of Ettling fishes provide direct evidence that Orthogonikleithrus hoelli was a primary food source during early Ettling times. Scarcity of ammonites and absence of vampyromorph coleoids at Ettling differ markedly from the situation at other nearby localities in the region (e.g., Eichstätt, Painten, Schamhaupten, the Mörnsheim beds), where they are more common. Although the exact biochronological age of Ettling remains uncertain (lack of suitable index fossils), many Ettling fishes occur in other plattenkalk basins of Germany (e.g., Kelheim) and France (Cerin) dated as Late Kimmeridgian to Early Tithonian (eigeltingense horizon), suggesting a comparable geologic age. The Ettling deposits represent an independent basin within the larger Upper Jurassic “Solnhofen Archipelago”, a shallow subtropical sea containing scattered islands, sponge-microbial and coral reefs, sandbars, and deeper basins on a vast carbonate platform along the northern margin of the Tethys Ocean. PMID:25629970

  8. Tectonic and magmatic evolution of a fossil (Ultra-)Slow Spreading Ocean: the study case of the Jurassic Ligurian Tethys.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Piccardo, G. B.

    2008-12-01

    The Jurassic Ligurian Tethys oceanic basin has been recognized as the fossil analogue of modern (Ultra- )Slow Spreading Ridges. Stratigraphic and structural studies on the Western Alpine - Northern Apennine (AA) ophiolites, that are remnants of the lithosphere of the ancient basin, evidence that the basin was characterized by the sea-floor exposure on mantle peridotites, discontinuously covered by MORB volcanites and pelagic sediments (i.e. radiolarion cherts). The related passive margins were typically not-volcanic. Palaeogeographic restorations indicate that exhumed sub-continental mantle was exposed at the ocean- continent transition (OCT) zones, frequently associated to continental crust material and pelagic sediments. These exhumed sub-continental lithospheric peridotites were equilibrated under spinel-facies conditions, preserving diffuse structural relicts of precursor garnet, and show widespread spinel(-garnet)-pyroxenites bands. Sm-Nd isotope data on Cpx from these peridotites indicate DMM affinity and Proterozoic model ages, that have been interpreted as early accretion to, and long residence in, the sub-continental lithosphere. OCT peridotites frequently show strong localized deformation along km-scale shear zones that were formed during lithosphere extension leading to the oceanic opening. Isotope data indicate that mantle exhumation during lithosphere extension was already active during Triassic times and was most probably accomodated by a network of lithosphere-scale shear zones. Lithospheric thinning caused asthenosphere adiabatic upwelling and decompression melting along the axial zone of the extensional system. The asthenospheric MORB melts infiltrated by porous flow and percolated through the overlying extending lithospheric mantle causing significant melt-peridotite interaction. The pristine lithospheric mantle was tranformed to strongly pyroxene-depleted (i.e. reactive and replacive peridotites) or plagioclase-enriched (i.e. impregnated and

  9. Evidence of macrophagous teleosaurid crocodylomorphs in the Corallian Group (Oxfordian, Late Jurassic) of the UK.

    PubMed

    Foffa, Davide; Young, Mark T; Brusatte, Stephen L

    2015-01-01

    Teleosaurids were a group of semi-aquatic crocodylomorphs with a fossil record that spanned the Jurassic Period. In the UK, abundant specimens are known from the Oxford Clay Formation (OCF, Callovian to lower Oxfordian), but are very rare in the Kimmeridge Clay Formation (KCF, Kimmeridgian to lower Tithonian), despite their abundance in some contemporaneous deposits in continental Europe. Unfortunately, due to the paucity of material from the intermediate 'Corallian Gap' (middle to upper Oxfordian), we lack an understanding of how and why teleosaurid taxic abundance and diversity declined from the OCF to the KCF. The recognition of an incomplete teleosaurid lower jaw from the Corallian of Weymouth (Dorset, UK) begins to rectify this. The vertically oriented dentition, blunt tooth apices, intense enamel ornamentation that shifts to an anastomosed pattern apically, and deep reception pits on the dentary unambiguously demonstrates the affinity of this specimen with an unnamed sub-clade of macrophagous/durophagous teleosaurids ('Steneosaurus' obtusidens + Machimosaurus). The high symphyseal tooth count allows us to exclude the specimen from M. hugii and M. mosae, but in absence of more diagnostic material we cannot unambiguously assign DORCM G.3939 to a more specific level. Nevertheless, this specimen represents the first mandibular material referable to Teleosauridae from the poorly sampled middle-upper Oxfordian time-span in the UK.

  10. Late Jurassic to Eocene geochemical evolution of volcanic rocks in Puerto Rico

    SciTech Connect

    Schellekens, J.H. )

    1991-03-01

    The Late Jurassic to Eocene deformed volcanic, volcaniclastic and sedimentary rocks of Puerto Rico are divided into three igneous provinces, the southwestern, central, and northeastern igneous province. Based on the stratigraphic position approximate ages could be assigned to the flow rocks in these provinces. Ba/Nb and La/Sm diagrams are presented to illustrate the origin and evolution of the flow rocks. The oldest rock in the southwestern province may include MORB. Early Cretaceous volcanic rocks in the central and northeastern province have low Ba/nb and La/Sm, that are interpreted as an early island arc stage, with none or only minor contribution of slab-derived material. The Late Cretaceous to Eocene volcanic rocks have a wide range of values for the Ba/Nb and La/Sm that are interpreted as the result of admixture of a variable amount of slab-derived material. The Maricao Basalt (Maastrichtian to Eocene) in the southeastern igneous province has the geochemical signature of magmas formed in an extensional setting.

  11. Late Jurassic Crustal Thickening in the Mesozoic Arc of Ecuador and Colombia: Implications on the Evolution of Continental Arcs.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vanegas, J.; Cardona, A.; Blanco-Quintero, I.; Valencia, V.

    2014-12-01

    The tectonic evolution of South America during the Jurassic is related to the subduction of the Farallon plate and the formation of a series of continental arcs. In the northern Andes such arcs have been considered as controlled by extensional dominated tectonics. Paleomagnetic constraints have also suggested that between the Early and Late Jurassic several crustal domains were translate along the continental margin in association with strain partitioning in the convergent margin. A review of the character of the Salado terrane in the Cordillera Real of Ecuador indicates that it includes extensively deformed and metamorphosed volcano-sedimentary rocks that have achieved a greenschist to amphibolite facies event with chloritoid and garnet. This rocks are tightly associated with a ca. 143 Ma syn-tectonic granodiorite to monzogranite batholith that is also extensively milonitized.A similar Late Jurassic crustal thickening event that apparently affected volcano-sedimentary rocks have been also recently suspected in the Central Cordillera of the Colombian Andes in association with Jurassic plutonic rocks (Blanco-Quintero et al., 2013) It is therefore suggested that during the Late Jurassic the Northern Andes experienced significant contractional tectonics. Such crustal thickening may be related to either the active subduction setting were the crustal slivers formed in relation to oblique convergence are transfered and re-accreted to the margin and triggered the deformational event or to a collisional event associated to the arrival of an allocthonous terrane. New geochronological constraints on the metamorphic evolution and precise understanding on the relations between magmatism and deformation are going to be obtain in the Salado Terrane to appropriately test this hypothesis and contribute to the understanding of the extensional to compressional tectonic switching in continental arcs. Blanco-Quintero, I. F., García-Casco, A., Ruíz, E. C., Toro, L. M., Moreno, M

  12. Revision of the Late Jurassic crocodyliform Alligatorellus, and evidence for allopatric speciation driving high diversity in western European atoposaurids

    PubMed Central

    Mannion, Philip D.

    2014-01-01

    Atoposaurid crocodyliforms represent an important faunal component of Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous Laurasian semi-aquatic to terrestrial ecosystems, with numerous spatiotemporally contemporaneous atoposaurids known from western Europe. In particular, the Late Jurassic of France and Germany records evidence for high diversity and possible sympatric atoposaurid species belonging to Alligatorellus, Alligatorium and Atoposaurus. However, atoposaurid taxonomy has received little attention, and many species are in need of revision. As such, this potentially high European diversity within a narrow spatiotemporal range might be a taxonomic artefact. Here we provide a taxonomic and anatomical revision of the Late Jurassic atoposaurid Alligatorellus. Initially described as A. beaumonti from the Kimmeridgian of Cerin, eastern France, additional material from the Tithonian of Solnhofen, south-eastern Germany, was subsequently referred to this species, with the two occurrences differentiated as A. beaumonti beaumonti and A. beaumonti bavaricus, respectively. We provide a revised diagnosis for the genus Alligatorellus, and note a number of anatomical differences between the French and German specimens, including osteoderm morphology and the configuration and pattern of sculpting of cranial elements. Consequently, we restrict the name Alligatorellus beaumonti to include only the French remains, and raise the rank of the German material to a distinct species: Alligatorellus bavaricus. A new diagnosis is provided for both species, and we suggest that a recently referred specimen from a coeval German locality cannot be conclusively referred to Alligatorellus. Although it has previously been suggested that Alligatorellus, Alligatorium and Atoposaurus might represent a single growth series of one species, we find no conclusive evidence to support this proposal, and provide a number of morphological differences to distinguish these three taxa that appear to be independent of

  13. Late Paleozoic to Jurassic tectonic evolution of the Bogda area (northwest China): Evidence from detrital zircon U-Pb geochronology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, Wenhao; Zhang, Zhicheng; Li, Jianfeng; Li, Ke; Chen, Yan; Guo, Zhaojie

    2014-06-01

    Since the Cenozoic, the Tian Shan is rejuvenated by crustal shortening related to the ongoing India-Asia collision. However, the tectonic process prior to the Cenozoic remains ambiguous, especially in the Bogda area of the eastern Tian Shan. The continuous Late Paleozoic-Mesozoic sequences in the Bogda area record abundant information about the basin-mountain interaction. U-Pb (LA-ICP-MS) dating of detrital zircons from seven sandstone samples from Permian to Jurassic was used to investigate the changes of provenance and basin-mountain interaction in the Bogda area. During the Permian, proximal and synchronous pyroclastic materials were the major source. The Late Paleozoic magmatic belt in the North Tian Shan (NTS) had gradually become one of the main sources by the Late Permian, which implies the uplift and exhumation in the NTS area. This is interpreted in terms of near-source sedimentation in basin developing in a post-orogenic extension setting. The large range of U-Pb ages of detrital zircons observed in the Early-Middle Jurassic sediments encompasses most of the available sources implying a wide drainage pattern developing on a rather flat topography. Re-emergence of the Early Permian peak in the spectrum implies that the Bogda Mountains has existed as a gentle positive relief and began to provide materials to the submountain regions. The southern Junggar Basin extended towards to the south and evolved as a passively subsiding basin from the Middle Triassic to the Middle Jurassic. However, the synchronous pyroclastic (tuff) and the exhumed late Paleozoic detrital materials from the uplifted Bogda Mountains were the major component of the Upper Jurassic sediments. Associated to the conglomerate in the Kalaza Formation, the basin-range evolution entered a compression uplift stage. The basin pattern evolution of the Bogda area is consistent with that of the southern Junggar Basin.

  14. Exceptionally preserved juvenile megalosauroid theropod dinosaur with filamentous integument from the Late Jurassic of Germany.

    PubMed

    Rauhut, Oliver W M; Foth, Christian; Tischlinger, Helmut; Norell, Mark A

    2012-07-17

    Recent discoveries in Asia have greatly increased our understanding of the evolution of dinosaurs' integumentary structures, revealing a previously unexpected diversity of "protofeathers" and feathers. However, all theropod dinosaurs with preserved feathers reported so far are coelurosaurs. Evidence for filaments or feathers in noncoelurosaurian theropods is circumstantial and debated. Here we report an exceptionally preserved skeleton of a juvenile megalosauroid, Sciurumimus albersdoerferi n. gen., n. sp., from the Late Jurassic of Germany, which preserves a filamentous plumage at the tail base and on parts of the body. These structures are identical to the type 1 feathers that have been reported in some ornithischians, the basal tyrannosaur Dilong, the basal therizinosauroid Beipiaosaurus, and, probably, in the basal coelurosaur Sinosauropteryx. Sciurumimus albersdoerferi represents the phylogenetically most basal theropod that preserves direct evidence for feathers and helps close the gap between feathers reported in coelurosaurian theropods and filaments in ornithischian dinosaurs, further supporting the homology of these structures. The specimen of Sciurumimus is the most complete megalosauroid yet discovered and helps clarify significant anatomical details of this important basal theropod clade, such as the complete absence of the fourth digit of the manus. The dentition of this probably early-posthatchling individual is markedly similar to that of basal coelurosaurian theropods, indicating that coelurosaur occurrences based on isolated teeth should be used with caution.

  15. Facies architecture of a Late Jurassic carbonate ramp: the Korallenoolith of the Lower Saxony Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kästner, M.; Schülke, I.; Winsemann, J.

    2008-09-01

    The sedimentary succession of a Late Jurassic (Oxfordian to basal Kimmeridgian) carbonate ramp is described and interpreted. The study area is located in the central part of the Lower Saxony Basin in NW Germany, which forms part of the Central European Basin. Eight well-exposed and undeformed sections of the study area (Süntel area, Wesergebirge and eastern part of the Wiehengebirge) provide detailed information about lithofacies and lateral thickness variations. Biostratigraphically, the age of these sediments is poorly constrained. Twenty microfacies types are recognized that can be grouped into seven facies associations: (a) strongly bioturbated marlstones deposited near storm wave base (SWB), (b) foraminifera-rich wackestones, (c) wackestones and floatstones with biostromes and (d) bioclastic limestones deposited between SWB and fair-weather wave base (FWWB), (e) oolitic and iron-oolitic limestones and (f) siliciclastic sediments deposited above FWWB, and (g) lagoonal deposits. These facies associations characterize a storm dominated shallow mixed carbonate-siliciclastic ramp. Based on facies changes, quartz content, and gamma ray logs, the Korallenoolith Formation can be subdivided into a lower carbonate-dominated and an upper siliciclastic-dominated part, build up by different scales of small- to large-scale deepening- and shallowing-upward cycles. A preliminary correlation of measured outcrops of this formation is presented.

  16. Sedimentological evolution, diagenesis and hydrocarbon potentiality of late Jurassic carbonates, Eastern Region, Yemen Arab Republic

    SciTech Connect

    El-anbaawy, M.I.H.; Al-thour, K.A. )

    1989-01-01

    On the basis of the lateral and vertical distribution of the lithofacies identified within the Late Jurassic Amran sequence (Thoma Member) in Jabal Al-Balaq area, Marib, Y.A.R., three megafacies were recognized. Proceeding from the shore landwards they are: Ooid bank, including barriers such as reefs and carbonate sand shoals adjacent to the margin of a shallow platform having intertidal to subtidal agitated water, the bank being composed of skeletal packstone, oolitic grainstone and oncolitic packstone; Shelf lagoon, behind the shoal, characterized by less turbulent pelletoidal wackestone, sandy mudstone and algal stromatolite (boundstone); Alluvial coastal plain, including tidal sand flat of the marine shoreline-intertidal area, where cross-bedded sandstone and alluvial fan toe conglomerate were deposited. The apparent small-scale facies variations which are the result of the allocyclic tectonically controlled sea level fluctuations, reflect a complex interfingering of the depositional environments and the resulting rock types. The paragenetic sequence of the post-depositional processes within the siliciclastics inferred is: iron oxide cementation, authigenic growth of mica clays, generation of pressure solution and compaction, and generation of quartz overgrowths. It is indicated that the compaction process followed the neomorphism and cementation within the carbonates.

  17. Lowland-upland migration of sauropod dinosaurs during the Late Jurassic epoch.

    PubMed

    Fricke, Henry C; Hencecroth, Justin; Hoerner, Marie E

    2011-10-26

    Sauropod dinosaurs were the largest vertebrates ever to walk the Earth, and as mega-herbivores they were important parts of terrestrial ecosystems. In the Late Jurassic-aged Morrison depositional basin of western North America, these animals occupied lowland river-floodplain settings characterized by a seasonally dry climate. Massive herbivores with high nutritional and water needs could periodically experience nutritional and water stress under these conditions, and thus the common occurrence of sauropods in this basin has remained a paradox. Energetic arguments and mammalian analogues have been used to suggest that migration allowed sauropods access to food and water resources over a wide region or during times of drought or both, but there has been no direct support for these hypotheses. Here we compare oxygen isotope ratios (δ(18)O) of tooth-enamel carbonate from the sauropod Camarasaurus with those of ancient soil, lake and wetland (that is, 'authigenic') carbonates that formed in lowland settings. We demonstrate that certain populations of these animals did in fact undertake seasonal migrations of several hundred kilometres from lowland to upland environments. This ability to describe patterns of sauropod movement will help to elucidate the role that migration played in the ecology and evolution of gigantism of these and associated dinosaurs.

  18. Paleomagnetism of the Front Range (Colorado) Morrison Formation and an alternative model of Late Jurassic North American apparent polar wander

    SciTech Connect

    Fossen, M.C. Van; Kent, D.V. )

    1992-03-01

    A paleomagnetic study of the Upper Jurassic Morrison Formation in the Front Range of central Colorado yields high-unblocking-temperature, dual-polarity magnetizations. With respect to known paleohorizontal, the inclinations (absolute mean = 57.3{degree}, 95% confidence interval = 52.3{degree} to 63.1{degree}, N = 8 sites) pass tilt and reversal tests, whereas the dispersion in declinations can be attributed to apparent or real tectonic rotations and sedimentary processes. The site-centered colatitudinal locus of possible Front Range Morrison poles partially overlaps the 'upper' pole, but it excludes the 'lower' pole from the Morrison Formation on the Colorado Plateau as well as the 151 Ma Glance conglomerate pole from the Basin and Range province of southeastern Arizona. The authors offer various explanations for these disparities and suggest an alternative model of Late Jurassic North American apparent polar wander through {approximately}70{degree}N which is supported by Late Jurassic European poles (with positive stability tests) transferred to North American coordinates.

  19. Chemostratigraphic Constraints on Late Jurassic Paleoceanography of the East Texas Basin, Southern Margin of North America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mainali, P.; Rowe, H. D.

    2010-12-01

    Late Jurassic deposition of organic-rich muds occurred in the East Texas Basin of modern-day Texas and Louisiana in a ramp-style marine setting during the early formation of the Gulf of Mexico. These mudrocks are regional known as the Haynesville and Bossier Formations. The goals of the current project are to 1) develop a better understanding of the paleoceanographic conditions and the depositional environment, and 2) develop linkages between the record from the southern margin of North America and other well-documented paleoceanographic records of Kimmeridgian age. Ten drill cores from the study area have been studied for their geochemistry. Each core was scanned at a 1-foot interval using a handheld x-ray fluorescence instrument, providing rapid, quantitative analysis of the following elemental concentrations: Mg, Al, S, Si, P, K, Ti, Ca, Mn, Fe, Mo, Cr, Ni, Cu, Zn, Th, Rb, U, Sr, Zr, and V. In addition, preliminary interpretations for total inorganic carbon (TIC), total organic carbon (TOC), total nitrogen (%N), and bulk rock TOC and N isotopic composition of core samples reveal distinct differences between the Bossier and Haynesville formations. Results from previous geochemical studies suggest that the siliciclastic-dominated Bossier formation has less TOC than the underlying Haynesville formation. Furthermore, the Haynesville is much more carbonate-rich (calcite) than the overlying Bossier. An upwardly increasing trend in Si/Al in some cores suggests increasing detrital quartz influx. A linear relationship between Fe and Al suggest that iron is primarily in clay mineral phases in the Haynesville. Enrichments in Mo concentrations and Cr/V ratios reveal periods of anoxic conditions.

  20. Impact of climate on the evolution of carbonate systems during the Middle and Late Jurassic : (Paris Basin, France)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brigaud, Benjamin; Vincent, Benoît

    2013-04-01

    Reconstructions of the Middle and Late Jurassic Sea Surface Temperatures (SST) of western tethyan ocean display short-term changes (0.5 m.y. to 1 m.y.). Recent shallow-marine carbonate systems are potentially very sensitive to climatic variations, as shown during quaternary period (Deschamps et al., 2012). In contrast, in ancient sedimentary systems, the impact of palaeoclimatic variations on carbonate factories is not easy to identify because of interplay between different controlling factors such as eustasy, tectonic, the variety of carbonate producers, and sediment supply. The objective of this study is to propose a detailed facies and stratigraphic framework (at the resolution of a million years) for the Middle and Late Jurassic carbonates (about 30My) of the Paris Basin in order to compare the evolution of the carbonate systems with palaeoclimatic variations, recently well documented for the Jurassic of the western European domain (Dera et al., 2011). The microfacies study display 18 lithofacies that can be merged into seven facies associations along a carbonate ramp. Late Bajocian is marked by the appearance of carbonate facies with scleractinian corals forming lens-shaped bodies and dome-shaped bioherms buildups reaching 10 m thick and 10-20 m lateral extent. Associated to a sea-level fall, an increase of SST seems to favor the development of these corallian buildups. Protected lagoonal environments extend during the Bathonian and are characterized by mioliolid-rich micritic facies. A 2nd order sea-level rise, flooding the Middle Jurassic carbonate ramp system, is followed by a brief drop in SST, suggesting a link between the demise of shallow-marine carbonate factories and the cooling event at the Callovian/Oxfordian transition. The recovery of carbonate production and the location of the carbonate platform during the Oxfordian is controlled by three factors: (1) the geometry of the stratigraphic architecture of thick clay-rich prograding wedges, (2) a 2nd

  1. The late Middle Pleistocene hominin fossil record of eastern Asia: synthesis and review.

    PubMed

    Bae, Christopher J

    2010-01-01

    Traditionally, Middle Pleistocene hominin fossils that cannot be allocated to Homo erectus sensu lato or modern H. sapiens have been assigned to different specific taxa. For example, in eastern Asia, these hominin fossils have been classified as archaic, early, or premodern H. sapiens. An increasing number of Middle Pleistocene hominin fossils are currently being assigned to H. heidelbergensis. This is particularly the case for the African and European Middle Pleistocene hominin fossil record. There have been suggestions that perhaps the eastern Asian late Middle Pleistocene hominins can also be allocated to the H. heidelbergensis hypodigm. In this article, I review the current state of the late Middle Pleistocene hominin fossil record from eastern Asia and examine the various arguments for assigning these hominins to the different specific taxa. The two primary conclusions drawn from this review are as follows: 1) little evidence currently exists in the eastern Asian Middle Pleistocene hominin fossil record to support their assignment to H. heidelbergensis; and 2) rather than add to the growing list of hominin fossil taxa by using taxonomic names like H. daliensis for northeast Asian fossils and H. mabaensis for Southeast Asian fossils, it is better to err on the side of caution and continue to use the term archaic H. sapiens to represent all of these hominin fossils. What should be evident from this review is the need for an increase in the quality and quantity of the eastern Asian hominin fossil data set. Fortunately, with the increasing number of large-scale multidisciplinary paleoanthropological field and laboratory research projects in eastern Asia, the record is quickly becoming better understood.

  2. Mollusks of the Upper Jurassic (upper Oxfordian-lower Kimmeridgian) shallow marine Minas Viejas Formation, northeastern Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zell, Patrick; Beckmann, Seija; Stinnesbeck, Wolfgang; Götte, Martin

    2015-10-01

    We present the first systematic description of Late Jurassic (late Oxfordian-early Kimmeridgian) invertebrates from the shallow marine Minas Viejas Formation of northeastern Mexico. The unit was generally considered to be extremely poor in fossils, due to an overall evaporitic character. The collection described here includes three taxa of ammonites, 10 taxa of bivalves and five taxa of gastropods. The fossils were discovered near Galeana and other localities in southern Nuevo León and northeastern San Luis Potosí, in thin-bedded marly limestones intercalated between gypsum units. Due to complex internal deformation of the sediments, fossils used for this study cannot be assigned to precise layers of origin. However, the taxa identified suggest a Late Jurassic (late Oxfordian-early Kimmeridgian) age for these fossil-bearing layers and allow us, for the first time, to assign a biostratigraphic age to Upper Jurassic strata in the region underlying the La Caja and La Casita formations.

  3. New primate fossils from late Oligocene (Colhuehuapian) localities of Chubut Province, Argentina.

    PubMed

    Fleagle, J G; Bown, T M

    1983-01-01

    New primate fossils have been recovered from the late Oligocene (Colhuehuapian) localities of Gaiman and Sacanana in Patagonian Argentina. The new fossils are provisionally allocated to Dolichocebus gaimanensis and Tremacebus harringtoni, the only primates previously described from these localities. These new dental remains are more primitive than the teeth of any previously known platyrrhines, living or fossil, and conform extremely well with the hypothetical ancestral morphotype for New World monkeys suggested by several authors. They are also very similar to the teeth of Oligocene catarrhines from Egypt such as Aegyptopithecus zeuxis.

  4. The generation of high Sr/Y plutons following Late Jurassic arc-arc collision, Blue Mountains province, NE Oregon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwartz, Joshua J.; Johnson, Kenneth; Miranda, Elena A.; Wooden, Joseph L.

    2011-09-01

    High Sr/Y plutons (Sr/Y > 40) occupy large areas in ancient and modern orogenic belts, yet considerable controversy exists regarding mechanisms of their generation, the tectonic settings in which they form, and their relationship to contractional deformation through time. In the Blue Mountains province (NE Oregon), a suite of Late Jurassic (148-145 Ma), high Sr/Y plutons intrude Middle Jurassic (162-157 Ma), low Sr/Y (< 40) arc-related lavas and plutons in the Dixie Butte area immediately after widespread Late Jurassic arc-arc collision (159-154 Ma). Early, pre- to syn-kinematic low Sr/Y lavas and plutons (162-157 Ma) have flat to slightly enriched light rare earth element (REE) abundances, low Sr (< 400 ppm) and Sr/Y values (< 40), and strongly positive initial epsilon Hf values (+ 10.1 to + 12.3: 2σ weighted average). Ce/Y values from basalts and gabbros yield a maximum crustal thickness of ~ 23 km. These geochemical and isotopic features suggest derivation from a depleted-mantle source and/or shallow-level (≪ 40 km) melting of pre-existing island arc crust with little to no evolved crustal input. In contrast, post-kinematic high Sr/Y plutons (148-145 Ma) are more compositionally restricted (tonalite-trondhjemite-granodiorite) and display depleted heavy REE abundances, an absence of Eu anomalies, elevated Sr (> 600 ppm) and Sr/Y values (> 40), and positive initial epsilon Hf values (+ 10.5 to + 7.8: 2σ weighted average). These geochemical and isotopic results are consistent with geochemical models suggesting derivation from partial melting of island arc crust in the presence of a plagioclase-poor to absent, clinopyroxene + hornblende + garnet-bearing source (depths > 35-40 km). We propose that the transition from low Sr/Y to high Sr/Y magmatism resulted from orogenic thickening of island arc crust in the Dixie Butte area during Late Jurassic arc-arc collision between the Olds Ferry and Wallowa island arcs at 159-154 Ma. This fundamental change in crustal

  5. The stratigraphy of Oxfordian-Kimmeridgian (Late Jurassic) reservoir sandstones in the Witch Ground Graben, United Kingdom North Sea

    SciTech Connect

    Harker, S.D. ); Mantel, K.A. ); Morton, D.J. ); Riley, L.A. )

    1993-10-01

    Oil-bearing Upper Jurassic Oxfordian-Kimmeridgian sandstones of the Sgiath and Piper formations are of major economic importance in the Witch Ground Gaben, United Kingdom North Sea. They form the reservoirs in 14 fields that originally contained 2 billion bbl of oil reserves, including Scott Field, which in 1993 will be the largest producing United Kingdom North Sea oil field to come on stream in more than a decade. The Sgiath and Piper formations represent Late Jurassic transgressive and regressive phases that began with paralic deposition and culminated in a wave-dominated delta system. These phases preceded the major grabel rifting episode (late Kimmeridgian to early Ryazanian) and deposition of the Kimmeridge Clay Formation, the principal source rock of the Witch Ground Graben oil fields. A threefold subdivision of the middle to upper Oxfordian Sgiath Formation is formally proposed, with Scott field well 15/21a-15 as the designated reference well. The basal Skene Member consists of thinly interbedded paralic carbonaceous shales, coals, and sandstones. This is overlain by transgressive marine shales of the Saltire Member. The upper-most Oxfordian Scott Member consists of shallow marine sandstones that prograded to the southwest. The contact of the Sgiath and Piper formations is a basinwide transgressive marine shale (I shale), which can act as an effective barrier to fluid communication between the Sgiath and Piper reservoir sandstones.

  6. A Jurassic wood providing insights into the earliest step in Ginkgo wood evolution.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Zikun; Wang, Yongdong; Philippe, Marc; Zhang, Wu; Tian, Ning; Zheng, Shaolin

    2016-12-16

    The fossil record of Ginkgo leaf and reproductive organs has been well dated to the Mid-Jurassic (170 Myr). However, the fossil wood record that can safely be assigned to Ginkgoales has not yet been reported from strata predating the late Early Cretaceous (ca. 100 Myr). Here, we report a new fossil wood from the Mid-Late Jurassic transition deposit (153-165 Myr) of northeastern China. The new fossil wood specimen displays several Ginkgo features, including inflated axial parenchyma and intrusive tracheid tips. Because it is only slightly younger than the oldest recorded Ginkgo reproductive organs (the Yima Formation, 170 Myr), this fossil wood very probably represents the oldest bona fide fossil Ginkgo wood and the missing ancestral form of Ginkgo wood evolution.

  7. A Jurassic wood providing insights into the earliest step in Ginkgo wood evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Zikun; Wang, Yongdong; Philippe, Marc; Zhang, Wu; Tian, Ning; Zheng, Shaolin

    2016-12-01

    The fossil record of Ginkgo leaf and reproductive organs has been well dated to the Mid-Jurassic (170 Myr). However, the fossil wood record that can safely be assigned to Ginkgoales has not yet been reported from strata predating the late Early Cretaceous (ca. 100 Myr). Here, we report a new fossil wood from the Mid-Late Jurassic transition deposit (153–165 Myr) of northeastern China. The new fossil wood specimen displays several Ginkgo features, including inflated axial parenchyma and intrusive tracheid tips. Because it is only slightly younger than the oldest recorded Ginkgo reproductive organs (the Yima Formation, 170 Myr), this fossil wood very probably represents the oldest bona fide fossil Ginkgo wood and the missing ancestral form of Ginkgo wood evolution.

  8. A Jurassic wood providing insights into the earliest step in Ginkgo wood evolution

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Zikun; Wang, Yongdong; Philippe, Marc; Zhang, Wu; Tian, Ning; Zheng, Shaolin

    2016-01-01

    The fossil record of Ginkgo leaf and reproductive organs has been well dated to the Mid-Jurassic (170 Myr). However, the fossil wood record that can safely be assigned to Ginkgoales has not yet been reported from strata predating the late Early Cretaceous (ca. 100 Myr). Here, we report a new fossil wood from the Mid-Late Jurassic transition deposit (153–165 Myr) of northeastern China. The new fossil wood specimen displays several Ginkgo features, including inflated axial parenchyma and intrusive tracheid tips. Because it is only slightly younger than the oldest recorded Ginkgo reproductive organs (the Yima Formation, 170 Myr), this fossil wood very probably represents the oldest bona fide fossil Ginkgo wood and the missing ancestral form of Ginkgo wood evolution. PMID:27982113

  9. Algal fossils from a late precambrian, hypersaline lagoon.

    PubMed

    Oehler, D Z; Oehler, J H; Stewart, A J

    1979-07-27

    Organically preserved algal microfossils from the Ringwood evaporite deposit in the Gillen Member of the Bitter Springs Formation (late Precambrian of central Australia) are of small size, low diversity, and probable prokaryotic affinities. These rather primitive characteristics appear to reflect the stressful conditions that prevailed in a periodically stagnant, hypersaline lagoon. This assemblage (especially in comparison with the much more diverse assemblages preserved in the Loves Creek Member of the same formation) illustrates the potential utility of Proterozoic microbiotas for basin analysis and local stratigraphic correlation and demonstrates the need to base evolutionary considerations and Precambrian intercontinental biostratigraphy on biotas that inhabited less restricted environments.

  10. Two new fossil flowers of magnoliid affinity from the Late Cretaceous of New Jersey.

    PubMed

    Crepet, W L; Nixon, K C

    1998-09-01

    Two taxa of cupulate magnoliid fossil flowers, Cronquistiflora and Detrusandra, are described from the Late Cretaceous (Turonian, ∼90 million years before present [MYBP]) Raritan (or lower Magothy) Formation of New Jersey. The fossil taxa are represented by flowers at various stages of development, associated fragments of cup-shaped floral receptacles with attached anthers, and isolated anthers. Both taxa have laminar stamens with adaxial thecae and valvate dehiscence. Pollen is boat-shaped and foveolate in anthers associated with Cronquistiflora and spherical with reticulate ornamentation in Detrusandra. Cup-shaped receptacles are externally bracteose in both taxa. The receptacle of Cronquistiflora is broader than the campanulate one of Detrusandra. Cronquistiflora also has more carpels (∼50 in a spiral vs. ∼5 in a whorl or tight spiral). In Detrusandra the carpels are surrounded by dorsiventrally flattened structures (pistillodes?) that are remote from the attachment of the stamens near the distal rim of the receptacular cupule. Detrusandra stigmas are rounded and bilobed, while those of Cronquistiflora, although bilateral in symmetry, are somewhat peltate. The fossil taxa share prominent characters with extant cupulate magnoliids (e.g., Eupomatia, Calycanthus), but also share characters with other magnoliids including Winteraceae. These fossils represent taxa that are character mosaics relative to currently recognized families. Inclusion of these fossils in existing data matrices and ensuing phylogenetic analyses effect changes in tree topologies consistent with their mosaicism relative to modern taxa. But such analyses do not definitively demonstrate the affinities of the fossils other than illustrating that these fossils are generalized magnoliids. Additional analysis of modern and fossil magnoliids is necessary to fully appreciate the phylogenetic significance and positions of these fossil taxa. However, the results of the phylogenetic analyses do

  11. Late Cretaceous Extreme Polar Warmth recorded by Vertebrate Fossils from the High Canadian Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vandermark, D.; Tarduno, J. A.; Brinkman, D.

    2006-12-01

    A vertebrate fossil assemblage from Late Cretaceous (Coniacian-Turonian, ~92 to 86 Ma) rocks on Axel Heiberg Island in the High Canadian Arctic reflects what was once a diverse community of freshwater fishes and reptiles. Paleomagnetic data indicate a paleolatitude of ~71° N for the site; the fossils are from non-migratory fauna, so they can provide insight into Late Cretaceous polar climate. The fossil assemblage includes large (> 2.4 m long) champsosaurs (extinct crocodilelike reptiles). The presence of large champsosaurs suggests a mean annual temperature > 14 °C (and perhaps as great as 25 °C). Here we summarize findings and analyses following the discovery of the fossil-bearing strata in 1996. Examination of larger fish elements, isolated teeth and SEM studies of microstructures indicates the presence of lepisosteids, amiids and teleosts (Friedman et al., 2003) Interestingly, the only other known occurrence of amiids and lepisosteids, fossil or recent, are from intervals of extreme warmth during the Tertiary. Turtles present in the assemblage include Boreralochelys axelheibergensis, a generically indeterminate eucryptodire and a trioychid (Brinkman and Tarduno, 2005). The level of turtle diversity is also comparable to mid-latitude assemblages with a mean annual paleotemperature of at least 14 °C. A large portion of the champsosaur fossil assemblage is comprised of elements from subadults. This dominance of subadults is similar to that seen from low latitude sites. Because of the sensitivity of juveniles to ice formation, the make-up of the Arctic champsosaur population further indicates that the Late Cretaceous saw an interval of extreme warmth and low seasonality. We note the temporal coincidence of these fossils with volcanism at large igneous provinces (including high Arctic volcanism) and suggest that a pulse in volcanic carbon dioxide emissions helped cause the global warmth.

  12. Did an ice sheet exist in Northeast Asia at the Middle-Late Jurassic boundary? (Critical remarks on the article by Y. Donnadieu et al. (2011) "A mechanism for brief glacial episodes in the Mesozoic greenhouse")

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chumakov, N. M.; Zakharov, V. A.; Rogov, M. A.

    2014-11-01

    Results of climate modeling of Northeast Russia for the Middle-Late Jurassic boundary (Donnadieu et al., 2011) are critically reviewed. Geological and paleontological data are presented that indicate that the giant ice sheet which, according to the model, covered the entire territory in question at the Middle-Late Jurassic boundary did not exist.

  13. Carbonate-evaporite sequences of the late Jurassic, southern and southwestern Arabian Gulf

    SciTech Connect

    Alsharhan, A.S.; Whittle, G.L.

    1995-11-01

    The carbonate-evaporite sequences of the Upper Jurassic Arab and overlying Hith formations in the southern and southwestern Arabian Gulf form many supergiant and giant fields that produce from the Arab Formation and are excellent examples of a classic reservoir/seal relationship. The present-day sabkha depositional setting that extends along most of the southern and southwestern coasts of the Arabian Gulf provides an analog to these Upper Jurassic sedimentary rocks. In fact, sabkha-related diagenesis of original grain-supported sediments in the Arab and Hith formations has resulted in five distinct lithofacies that characterize the reservoir/seal relationship: (1) oolitic/peloidal grainstone, (2) dolomitic grainstone, (3) dolomitic mudstone, (4) dolomitized grainstone, and (5) massive anhydrite. Interparticle porosity in grainstones and dolomitic grainstones and intercrystalline porosity in dolomitized rocks provide the highest porosity in the study area. These sediments accumulated in four types of depositional settings: (1) supratidal sabkhas, (2) intertidal mud flats and stromatolitic flats, (3) shallow subtidal lagoons, and (4) shallow open-marine shelves. The diagenetic history of the Arab and Hith formations in the southern and southwestern Arabian Gulf suggests that the anhydrite and much of the dolomitization are a result of penecontemporaneous sabkha diagenesis. The character and timing of the paragenetic events are responsible for the excellent porosity of the Arab Formation and the lack of porosity in the massive anhydrites of the Hith, which together result in the prolific hydrocarbon sequences of these formations.

  14. Jabali, a Zn-Pb-(Ag) carbonate-hosted deposit associated with Late Jurassic rifting in Yemen

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Al Ganad, I.; Lagny, P.; Lescuyer, J. L.; Ramboz, C.; Touray, J. C.

    1994-04-01

    The Jabali deposit (3.8 Mt at 16% Zn, 2% Pb and 132 g/t Ag) is hosted by dolomitized platform carbonates of Kimmeridgian age at the southwestern edge of the oil-producing Wadi al Jawf rift basin in northern Yemen. Paleogeographical reconstructions demonstrate that tensional synsedimentary tectonic activity from the Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous was responsible for the thick accumulation of argillaceous and evaporitic sediments in the subsident rift basin, the unstable margin of which was the site of rapid facies changes, local disconformities and periods of emergence, as well as of dolomitization along the WNW- and NNW-striking boundary fault system. In the Jabali area, the upper part of the Jurassic sequence underwent two stages of dolomitization before emergence and deep karstic erosion. Solution cavities and depressions in the eroded surface were filled by dolomite sand and black pyritic mudstone prior to a last marine transgression of limited extent. Subsequent ore deposition and associated late dolomitization sealed the network of solution cavities, impregnating the dolomite sands and the host dolomites. Sphalerite I and wurtzite, followed by silver-bearing zoned sphalerite II associated with galena, crystallized from a cyclic influx of low-temperature (75-100°C) saline solutions. Lead isotope geochemistry indicates that the lead, zinc and silver probably originated from an Early Proterozoic basement. The dissolved metals were likely derived from the basal aquifer (detrital material of basement origin) of the evaporite-bearing sequence filling the Wadi al Jawf trough. Migrating metalliferous brines from the basin to the uplifted Jabali area, where ore deposition was favoured by a reducing environment, were probably channelled by the boundary fault system during the last stages of synsedimentary tectonic activity.

  15. Giant fossil coelacanths of the Late Cretaceous in the eastern United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwimmer, David R.; Stewart, J. D.; Dent Williams, G.

    1994-06-01

    Remains of giant fossil coelacanth fish are relatively common in Upper Cretaceous strata (late Santonian to early Campanian age) in Alabama and Georgia. These are penecontemporaneous with the youngest reported fossil coelacanths from any global location and ˜135 m.y. younger than the last coelacanth fish reported from North America. A coelacanth coronoid fragment from New Jersey, apparently from the same taxon, is of latest Campanian or Maastrichtian age and is the youngest known definite coelacanth fossil. The species reconstructs to 3.5 m, which is as large as any known coelacanth. The name Megalocoelacanthus dobiei is proposed for this new coelacanth, which is also the last known member of the Glade that includes the extant Latimeria.

  16. Tectonic evolution of the Transbaikal region (Siberia) from Late Jurassic to Present. Implications for the Mongol-Okhotsk orogeny.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jolivet, M.; Arzhannikova, A.; Arzhannikov, S.; Chauvet, A.; Vassallo, R.; Kulagina, N.; Akulova, V.

    2012-04-01

    The Transbaikal region extends over several hundreds of kilometres east of the Baikal Rift System. It is characterized by a number of sub-parallel Mesozoic grabens or half grabens generally filled with late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous clastic sediments interbedded with coal layers (1). Similar basins occur on an even larger area spanning from the Transbaikal region down to Korea implying a large-scale extensional process affecting most of the Amuria plate during the Mesozoic. In the Transbaikal region, the normal faults controlling the edges of the Mesozoic basins are generally superimposed to Palaeozoic ductile shear zones implying a strong localisation of the extensional deformation on inherited structures. Recent studies, associated to our own fieldwork demonstrated that some of the faults were again activated (2), still as extensional faults, during the Tertiary or Quaternary, and that some of them are presently active. The closure of the Mongol-Okhotsk ocean separating the Siberian plate from the Amurian block during the Mesozoic corresponds to a major event in the growth process of the East Asian continent. The oceanic suture zone is situated on the southern edge of the Transbaikal region and its roughly SW-NE direction is parallel to the basins (3). The timing of the closure of the Mongol-Okhotsk ocean is still highly debated: while sedimentological and tectonic data suggest that the oceanic closure and the following collision occurred in early Middle Jurassic (4), paleomagnetic studies advocate for a Early Cretaceous collision (5). Furthermore, several other questions remain on the localization, the size and the fate of the relief that most probably formed during the collision between the Amuria block and the Siberian craton. In order to answer those questions we used low temperature thermochronology data associated to tectonic, sedimentology and palinology to investigate the evolution of the Transbaikal grabens from Mesozoic to Present. Tectonic and

  17. Biotic and environmental dynamics through the Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous transition: evidence for protracted faunal and ecological turnover.

    PubMed

    Tennant, Jonathan P; Mannion, Philip D; Upchurch, Paul; Sutton, Mark D; Price, Gregory D

    2017-05-01

    The Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous interval represents a time of environmental upheaval and cataclysmic events, combined with disruptions to terrestrial and marine ecosystems. Historically, the Jurassic/Cretaceous (J/K) boundary was classified as one of eight mass extinctions. However, more recent research has largely overturned this view, revealing a much more complex pattern of biotic and abiotic dynamics than has previously been appreciated. Here, we present a synthesis of our current knowledge of Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous events, focusing particularly on events closest to the J/K boundary. We find evidence for a combination of short-term catastrophic events, large-scale tectonic processes and environmental perturbations, and major clade interactions that led to a seemingly dramatic faunal and ecological turnover in both the marine and terrestrial realms. This is coupled with a great reduction in global biodiversity which might in part be explained by poor sampling. Very few groups appear to have been entirely resilient to this J/K boundary 'event', which hints at a 'cascade model' of ecosystem changes driving faunal dynamics. Within terrestrial ecosystems, larger, more-specialised organisms, such as saurischian dinosaurs, appear to have suffered the most. Medium-sized tetanuran theropods declined, and were replaced by larger-bodied groups, and basal eusauropods were replaced by neosauropod faunas. The ascent of paravian theropods is emphasised by escalated competition with contemporary pterosaur groups, culminating in the explosive radiation of birds, although the timing of this is obfuscated by biases in sampling. Smaller, more ecologically diverse terrestrial non-archosaurs, such as lissamphibians and mammaliaforms, were comparatively resilient to extinctions, instead documenting the origination of many extant groups around the J/K boundary. In the marine realm, extinctions were focused on low-latitude, shallow marine shelf-dwelling faunas

  18. Filling the gaps of dinosaur eggshell phylogeny: Late Jurassic Theropod clutch with embryos from Portugal

    PubMed Central

    Araújo, Ricardo; Castanhinha, Rui; Martins, Rui M. S.; Mateus, Octávio; Hendrickx, Christophe; Beckmann, F.; Schell, N.; Alves, L. C.

    2013-01-01

    The non-avian saurischians that have associated eggshells and embryos are represented only by the sauropodomorph Massospondylus and Coelurosauria (derived theropods), thus missing the basal theropod representatives. We report a dinosaur clutch containing several crushed eggs and embryonic material ascribed to the megalosaurid theropod Torvosaurus. It represents the first associated eggshells and embryos of megalosauroids, thus filling an important phylogenetic gap between two distantly related groups of saurischians. These fossils represent the only unequivocal basal theropod embryos found to date. The assemblage was found in early Tithonian fluvial overbank deposits of the Lourinhã Formation in West Portugal. The morphological, microstructural and chemical characterization results of the eggshell fragments indicate very mild diagenesis. Furthermore, these fossils allow unambiguous association of basal theropod osteology with a specific and unique new eggshell morphology. PMID:23722524

  19. Contemporaneous trace and body fossils from a late Pleistocene Lakebed in Victoria, Australia, allow assessment of bias in the fossil record.

    PubMed

    Camens, Aaron Bruce; Carey, Stephen Paul

    2013-01-01

    The co-occurrence of vertebrate trace and body fossils within a single geological formation is rare and the probability of these parallel records being contemporaneous (i.e. on or near the same bedding plane) is extremely low. We report here a late Pleistocene locality from the Victorian Volcanic Plains in south-eastern Australia in which demonstrably contemporaneous, but independently accumulated vertebrate trace and body fossils occur. Bite marks from a variety of taxa are also present on the bones. This site provides a unique opportunity to examine the biases of these divergent fossil records (skeletal, footprints and bite marks) that sampled a single fauna. The skeletal record produced the most complete fauna, with the footprint record indicating a markedly different faunal composition with less diversity and the feeding traces suggesting the presence, amongst others, of a predator not represented by either the skeletal or footprint records. We found that the large extinct marsupial predator Thylacoleo was the only taxon apparently represented by all three records, suggesting that the behavioral characteristics of large carnivores may increase the likelihood of their presence being detected within a fossil fauna. In contrast, Diprotodon (the largest-ever marsupial) was represented only by trace fossils at this site and was absent from the site's skeletal record, despite its being a common and easily detected presence in late Pleistocene skeletal fossil faunas elsewhere in Australia. Small mammals absent from the footprint record for the site were represented by skeletal fossils and bite marks on bones.

  20. Contemporaneous Trace and Body Fossils from a Late Pleistocene Lakebed in Victoria, Australia, Allow Assessment of Bias in the Fossil Record

    PubMed Central

    Camens, Aaron Bruce; Carey, Stephen Paul

    2013-01-01

    The co-occurrence of vertebrate trace and body fossils within a single geological formation is rare and the probability of these parallel records being contemporaneous (i.e. on or near the same bedding plane) is extremely low. We report here a late Pleistocene locality from the Victorian Volcanic Plains in south-eastern Australia in which demonstrably contemporaneous, but independently accumulated vertebrate trace and body fossils occur. Bite marks from a variety of taxa are also present on the bones. This site provides a unique opportunity to examine the biases of these divergent fossil records (skeletal, footprints and bite marks) that sampled a single fauna. The skeletal record produced the most complete fauna, with the footprint record indicating a markedly different faunal composition with less diversity and the feeding traces suggesting the presence, amongst others, of a predator not represented by either the skeletal or footprint records. We found that the large extinct marsupial predator Thylacoleo was the only taxon apparently represented by all three records, suggesting that the behavioral characteristics of large carnivores may increase the likelihood of their presence being detected within a fossil fauna. In contrast, Diprotodon (the largest-ever marsupial) was represented only by trace fossils at this site and was absent from the site's skeletal record, despite its being a common and easily detected presence in late Pleistocene skeletal fossil faunas elsewhere in Australia. Small mammals absent from the footprint record for the site were represented by skeletal fossils and bite marks on bones. PMID:23301008

  1. X-radiography of trace fossils in limestones and dolostones from the Jurassic Smackover Formation, south Alabama

    SciTech Connect

    Esposito, R.A.; Castleman, S.P.; King, D.T. Jr.

    1985-01-01

    X-radiography has been useful in studying biogenic sedimentary structures in unconsolidated sediments but the technique has not been applied often to the study of hard carbonate rock. The authors have applied x-radiography to the study of the lower part of the Smackover to enhance the complete petrologic description of the rock. The lower Smackover has many dense micrite intervals and intervals of monotonous, thin graded beds. Parts of the lower Smackover is also dolomitized. None of the above rocks contains significant amount of skeletal debris and trace fossils are not generally obvious in an etched slab of core. In limestone, they have detected well-preserved trace fossils by x-radiography, however. The dolostones show no traces using our method. In limestones, the traces are marked by minute amounts of finely divided iron sulfides. This causes a slight density difference resulting in greater x-ray absorption. They recognize two main trace-fossil types: a Thalassinoides best seen in slabs cut parallel to bedding and a Zoophycos best seen in slabs cut perpendicular to bedding. The technique requires a slab cut 8 mm thick with parallel flat surfaces and a medical x-ray unit using accelerating voltages of 66 kV and 10 mas. Traces are most successfully imaged on industrial-quality films.

  2. Highly extended oceanic lithosphere: The basement and wallrocks for the Late Jurassic Rogue-Chetco oceanic arc, Oregon Klamath Mountains

    SciTech Connect

    Yule, J.D.; Saleeby, J.B.

    1993-04-01

    The superbly preserved, coeval Late Jurassic Rogue-Chetco oceanic arc and Josephine inter-arc basin exposed in the western Jurassic belt of the Oregon Klamath Mountains provide a unique opportunity to (1) directly observe the oceanic lithosphere upon which this oceanic arc was constructed, and (2) gain a better understanding of the pre-accretionary dynamic processes that shape oceanic arc and inter-arc basin lithosphere. Field relations exposed in the Roque, Illinois, and Chetco River areas show that (1) plutonic and volcanic rocks of the Rogue-Chetco arc both intruded and conformably overlapped fragmented composite blocks of oceanic crust and serpentinized, dike-filled depleted mantle rocks; and (2) arc growth occurred during regional oblique extension of the oceanic lithosphere resulting in the extreme fragmentation of oceanic crustal rocks and the local exposure of serpentinized mantle rocks on the sea floor. The Rogue-Chetco overlap sequence consists of rhythmically bedded volcanogenic turbidites, chert, argillite, and local deposits of polymict basal breccias. The clasts which comprise the distinctive basal breccias indicate derivation from a dominantly ophiolitic crust and serpentinized mantle source. Source materials for the basal breccias comprise the basement and wallrocks for the Roque-Chetco arc and consist of (1) rifted fragments of western Paleozoic and Triassic belt rocks (Yule and others, 1991) cut by heterogeneous mafic complexes inferred to represent early Josephine age rifting at approximately 165 Ma, (2) fault bounded blocks of massive gabbro, sheeted mafic dikes, pillow lava and breccia overlain by Callovian age chert, and (3) serpentinized depleted mantle peridotite cut by multiple generation of mafic and intermediate dikes. The basement rock types all share a pervasive brittle fragmentation and hydrothermal alteration history that is conspicuously absent in the arc volcanic and plutonic rocks.

  3. Current Status of the Late Triassic and Early Jurassic APTS from Continental Sediments and Correlation with Standard Marine Stages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kent, D. V.; Olsen, P. E.; Muttoni, G.

    2014-12-01

    A reproducible geomagnetic polarity template for the Late Triassic and earliest Jurassic continues to be that determined from ~5,000 meters of cored section in the Newark basin and ~2,500 meters of outcrop section in the Hartford basin, sampled at nominal ~20 kyr intervals according to a well-developed climate cyclicity that characterizes the lacustrine strata present in all but the fluviatile portions of the basins [Kent & Olsen, 1999, 2008 JGR]. The age model is based on the 405 kyr Milankovich climate cycle and pegging the sequence to high precision U-Pb dating of the Central Atlantic Magmatic Province (CAMP) at 201.6 to 200.9 Ma [Blackburn+2013 Science], the initiation of which is practically coincident with the end-Triassic extinction level (formerly set to 202 Ma) and within a climatic precession cycle after magnetochron E23r. The resulting astrochronostratigraphic polarity time scale (APTS) has 66 Poisson-distributed polarity intervals from chrons E8r (~225 Ma) to H27n (~199 Ma) with a constant sediment-accumulation rate extrapolation to chron E1r (~233 Ma). Magnetostratigraphic correlations from the most complete and usually the thickest Tethyan marine sections suggest that the Carnian/Norian boundary occurs within ~E7n [Channell+2003 PPP; Muttoni+2004 GSAB] at an APTS age of 227.5 Ma and for the Norian/Rhaetian boundary anywhere from E16n [Husing+2011 EPSL] at ~210.5 Ma to E20r [Maron+2014 Geology] at ~205.4 Ma depending on choice of conodont taxa, whereas the Hettangian/Sinemurian boundary can be placed at ~199.5 Ma within the marine equivalent of H25r [Husing+2014 EPSL]. These APTS ages are in substantive agreement with available high-precision dates in marine strata for the late Carnian [231 Ma: Furin+2006 Geology], latest Norian [205.5 Ma: Wotslaw+2014 Geology], and the boundaries of the Triassic/Jurassic [201.3 Ma: Guex+2012 PPP] and the Hettangian/Sinemurian [199.5 Ma: Schaltegger+2008 EPSL]. Carnian magnetostratigraphy needs to be improved but

  4. Oldest fossil flowers of hamamelidaceous affinity, from the Late Cretaceous of New Jersey.

    PubMed Central

    Crepet, W L; Nixon, K C; Friis, E M; Freudenstein, J V

    1992-01-01

    Exceptionally well-preserved staminate inflorescences, pistillate inflorescences, and detached stamens with important phylogenetic and paleoecological implications have been discovered from the Turonian (ca. 88.5-90.4 million years B.P.) Raritan Formation of New Jersey. The fossils have a combination of floral and pollen characters found in various genera of modern entomophilous and anemophilous Hamamelidaceae and anemophilous Platanus (Platanaceae). The floral characters of the fossils, including a sepal cup, staminal tube, and apparently nectariferous staminodes, indicate that this taxon was probably insect pollinated. The juxtaposition of character complexes in an extinct taxon from disparate modern taxa provides an interesting phylogenetic perspective on the origins of Hamamelidaceae and is a striking example of a fossil that is a mosaic of familial level characters relative to modern taxa. Of even broader interest, however, is the occurrence of staminodal nectaries that have structural characters intermediate between the fossil's functional stamens and modern hamamelidaceous petals. This transitional staminode morphology in the context of the other fossil characters suggests a staminodal origin of petals in the hamamelid-rosid lineage. This hypothesis is supported by the apparent staminode position within the fossil flowers where petals are found in modern genera. The character complex of morphologically transitional staminodes, a staminal tube, and sepal cup can be viewed as prehypanthial, lacking only fusion of the staminal tube to the sepal cup. The appearance of the character complex embodied in these flowers during the late mid-Cretaceous may signal the early stages of the relationship between specialized pollinators, such as bees, and the hamamelid-rosid-asterid lineage of angiosperms, arguably one of the most important events in angiosperm radiation. Images PMID:11607328

  5. Approaching trophic structure in Late Jurassic neritic shelves: A western Tethys example from southern Iberia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olóriz, Federico; Reolid, Matías; Rodríguez-Tovar, Francisco J.

    2006-11-01

    The palaeoenvironmental conditions and trophic structure of a mid-outer neritic biota (microfossils, mainly forams, and macroinvertebrate assemblages) have been approached in middle Oxfordian-lowermost Kimmeridgian deposits from the Prebetic Zone (Betic Cordillera) in south-eastern Spain. According to relationships between fossil assemblages and lithofacies, a general seaward trend is identified which displays decreasing sedimentation rates and nutrient inputs, but increasing substrate consistency and presumably depth. Midshelf, terrigenous-rich deposits in the External Prebetic relate to the highest sedimentation rates and nutrient availability. These two parameters correlate with the highest content in vagile-benthic, calcareous perforate, epifaunal forams, as well as with potentially deep infaunal forams and infaunal macroinvertebrates. Outer-shelf lumpy deposits in the Internal Prebetic show the lowest sedimentation rates and nutrient availability and the highest records for macro-micro nektonics and planktics. In contrast, vagile-benthic, calcareous perforate epifaunal and potentially deep infaunal forams are scarcer in the midshelf environments. Colonial encrusting forams, benthic microbial communities and sessile benthic macro-invertebrates increase from the middle to outer shelf. Trophic-analysis structuring through the integration of benthic microbial communities, foraminiferal and macroinvertebrate fossil assemblages makes it possible to interpret: (a) a trophic-level frame composed of producers and primary and secondary consumers; (b) a main trophic-group differentiation in suspension-feeders, detritus-feeders, browsers, grazers, carnivores and scavengers; (c) a preliminary approach to food-chain structure supported by suspension-feeders, deposit-feeders and predators (active prey-selection carnivores); and (d) a food-pyramid model, which takes into account both recorded fossils and envisaged —i.e., ecologically inferred-organisms.

  6. Provenance and tectonic-paleogeographic evolution: Constraints from detrital zircon U-Pb ages of Late Triassic-Early Jurassic deposits in the northern Sichuan basin, central China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shao, Tongbin; Cheng, Nanfei; Song, Maoshuang

    2016-09-01

    U-Pb ages of 290 new detrital zircons from five Late Triassic-Early Jurassic sandstone samples in the northern Sichuan basin, along with other geological data, are used to constrain the sediment provenance and evaluate tectonic-paleogeographic evolution for the adjacent orogens through/from which these sediments were potentially derived. The Upper Triassic depocenter was located at the front of the Longmen Shan belt, and sediments in the western, southern and eastern Sichuan basin shared the southern North China block (NCB) and Qinling belt with the eastern Songpan-Ganzi terrane of Middle-Upper Triassic via the Longmen Shan belt, whereas the northern part of the basin was fed by dominant South Qinling belt (SQB) and northern Yangtze block and possibly subordinate southern NCB. Also, the youngest population in the northern Sichuan basin has a slightly younger age peak (∼235 Ma) than those (∼270 Ma) in other parts of the basin. During the Early Jurassic, the depocenter was still at the front of the Longmen Shan belt but only northern regions (e.g., SQB and northern Yangtze block) fed the basin. The northern Sichuan basin received less sediments from the southern NCB and more from the SQB and northern Yangtze block during the Early Jurassic than during the Late Triassic. The middle Mesoproterozoic detrital zircons, which likely originated from the North Qinling belt and northern Yangtze block where rocks with these zircons may be unexposed, occur more widely in the Lower Jurassic than in the Upper Triassic. These facts suggest that from the Late Triassic to Early Jurassic, it was increasingly difficult for sediments to transport from the NCB into the northern Sichuan basin and the provenance transferred progressively from the southern NCB to both the SQB and northern Yangtze block, implying the continuous South China block-NCB collision during that time.

  7. Inference of pCO2 Levels during the Late Cretaceous Using Fossil Lauraceae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richey, J. D.; Upchurch, G. R.

    2011-12-01

    Botanical estimates of pCO2 for the Late Cretaceous have most commonly used Stomatal Index (SI) in fossil Ginkgo. Recently, SI in fossil Lauraceae has been used to infer changes in pCO2 across the Cenomanian-Turonian boundary, based on the relation between SI and pCO2 in extant Laurus and Hypodaphnis. To provide a broad-scale picture of pCO2 based on fossil Lauraceae, we examined dispersed cuticle of the leaf macrofossil genus Pandemophyllum from: 1) the early to middle Cenomanian of the Potomac Group of Maryland (Mauldin Mountain locality, lower Zone III) and 2) the Maastrichtian of southern Colorado (Raton Basin, Starkville South and Berwind Canyon localities). These samples fall within the Late Cretaceous decline in pCO2 inferred from geochemical modeling and other proxies. SI was calculated from fossil cuticle fragments using ImageJ and counts of up to 56,000 cells per sample, a far greater number of cells than are counted in most studies. CO2 levels were estimated using the relation between SI and CO2 published for Laurus nobilis and Hypodaphnis zenkeri. Early to middle Cenomanian atmospheric pCO2 is estimated at 362-536 parts per million (ppm). This represents the absolute minimum and maximum estimated CO2 levels from the ±95% confidence intervals (CI) of the relation between SI and CO2 for the modern equivalents, and SI ± 1 Standard Deviation (SD) in the fossil genus Pandemophyllum. Late Maastrichtian atmospheric pCO2 is estimated at 358-534 ppm. The Maastrichtian estimates falls within the range of published estimates from other proxies. The Cenomanian estimate, in contrast, is low relative to most other estimates. The 95% confidence intervals of our pCO2 estimates overlap each other and many of the assemblages published by Barclay et al. (2010) for Lauraceae across the Cenomanian-Turonian boundary. This could indicate that 1) pCO2 did not undergo a major long-term decline during the Late Cretaceous, 2) Lauraceae show low sensitivity to high pCO2, or 3

  8. Late glacial climate estimates for southern Nevada: The ostracode fossil record

    SciTech Connect

    Forester, R.M.; Smith, A.J.

    1995-10-01

    Climate change plays an important role in determining as possible long term hydrological performance of the potential high level nuclear waste repository within Yucca Mountain, Nevada. Present-day global circulation results in this region having an arid to semi-arid climate characterized by hot and relatively dry summers. Global circulation during the late glacial (about 14 to 20 ka) was very different from the present-day. Preliminary study of late-glacial fossil ostracodes from {open_quotes}marsh deposits{close_quotes} in the upper Las Vegas Valley suggests mean annual precipitation may have been four times higher, while mean annual temperature may have been about 10{degrees}C cooler than today. A major difference between present-day and late-glacial climate was likely the existence of cooler, cloudier, and wetter summers in the past.

  9. New geochronologic constraints on Early, Middle, and Late Jurassic orogenesis in the Klamath Mountains

    SciTech Connect

    Donato, M.M. ); Hacker, B.R.; McWilliams, M.O.

    1993-04-01

    More than 40 new Ar/Ar ages, in conjunction with radiometric data published by many other authors, allow improved recognition of the spatial and temporal ranges of magmatic, metamorphic and deformational events associated with the formation of continental crust in the Klamath Mountains. Magmatism in earliest Jurassic time, [approx]200 Ma, is now recognized to have been widespread. Volcanoplutonic arcs of this age are present in upper levels of the Rattlesnake Creek terrane and in lower levels of the North Fork/Salmon River terrane. Roughly 200 Ma metaplutonic rocks are also found in the basement of the Rogue/Chetco arc, Preston Peak mafic complex, and Lems Ridge olistostrome. From 167--155 Ma, magmatic and structural extension occurred along a NW-SE corridor restricted to the northern Klamaths. Igneous rocks include the Wooley Creek, Preston Peak, Josephine, and Rogue/Chetco suites, and the Marble Mountains fault may represent a contemporaneous normal fault. The southern edge of the extended corridor is the Salmon tectonic line of Irwin (1985), but the northern boundary has not been recognized or named. Both boundaries were presumably transfer zones accommodating differential subhorizontal extension, but many details are still to be determined. The Siskiyou and Nevadan orogenies can no longer be assigned specific, narrow time windows and may have outlived their usefulness as currently defined. Enough geochronologic data are now available to consider the ages and characteristics of specific plutons, deformation fabrics, and metamorphic minerals in individual areas, rather than assuming such events occur throughout the orogen within specific time ranges.

  10. Late Paleozoic to Jurassic chronostratigraphy of coastal southern Peru: Temporal evolution of sedimentation along an active margin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boekhout, F.; Sempere, T.; Spikings, R.; Schaltegger, U.

    2013-11-01

    We present an integrated geochronological and sedimentological study that significantly revises the basin and magmatic history associated with lithospheric thinning in southern coastal Peru (15-18°S) since the onset of subduction at ˜530 Ma. Until now, estimating the age of the sedimentary and volcanic rocks has heavily relied on paleontologic determinations. Our new geochronological data, combined with numerous field observations, provide the first robust constraints on their chronostratigraphy, which is discussed in the light of biostratigraphical attributions. A detailed review of the existing local units simplifies the current stratigraphic nomenclature and clarifies its absolute chronology using zircon U-Pb ages. We observe that the Late Paleozoic to Jurassic stratigraphy of coastal southern Peru consists of two first-order units, namely (1) the Yamayo Group, a sedimentary succession of variable (0-2 km) thickness, with apparently no nearby volcanic lateral equivalent, and (2) the overlying Yura Group, consisting of a lower, 1-6 km-thick volcanic and volcaniclastic unit, the Chocolate Formation, and an upper, 1-2 km-thick sedimentary succession that are in markedly diachronous contact across the coeval arc and back-arc. We date the local base of the Chocolate Formation, and thus of the Yura Group, to 216 Ma, and show that the underlying Yamayo Group spans a >110 Myr-long time interval, from at least the Late Visean to the Late Triassic, and is apparently devoid of significant internal discontinuities. The age of the top of the Chocolate Formation, i.e. of the volcanic arc pile, varies from ˜194 Ma to less than ˜135 Ma across the study area. We suggest that this simplified and updated stratigraphic framework can be reliably used as a reference for future studies.

  11. Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous coal-forming plants of the Bureya Basin, Russian Far East

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Markevich, V. S.; Bugdaeva, E. V.

    2014-05-01

    The analysis of the composition of fossil palynomorphs from coals and clastic rocks of the Talyndzhan, Dublikan, Soloni, Chagdamyn, and Chemchuko formations of the Bureya coaliferous Basin revealed that the main coal-forming plants during the Talyndzhan and Dublikan time were represented by cyatheaceous ferns, plants similar to Pinaceae, and plants produced Ginkgocycadophytus pollen. In the Soloni time, the boggy plant communities were composed of dominant Cyatheaceae, subordinate Pinaceae, rare Gleichenaceae representatives, and Ginkgocycadophytus-producing plants. During the Chagdamyn time, the main coal-forming role belonged to gleicheniaceous ferns, bryophytes, and lycopsids, while the Chemchuko time was marked by the dominant contribution of Gleicheniaceae, Cyatheaceae, Ginkgocycadophytus, and plants close to Taxodiaceae to the coal formation.

  12. Geochronology, geochemistry, and deformation history of Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous intrusive rocks in the Erguna Massif, NE China: Constraints on the late Mesozoic tectonic evolution of the Mongol-Okhotsk orogenic belt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, Jie; Xu, Wen-Liang; Wang, Feng; Zhao, Shuo; Li, Yu

    2015-09-01

    This paper presents new zircon and sphene U-Pb ages, biotite and hornblende 40Ar/39Ar ages, Hf isotopic data, and geochemical data for five Mesozoic plutons in the Erguna Massif of NE China. These data are used to constrain the late Mesozoic tectonic evolution of the Mongol-Okhotsk orogenic belt. This new dating, when combined with previously published ages, indicates that the Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous (J3-K1) intrusive rocks can be subdivided into three stages that represent periods of magmatism during the Late Jurassic ( 155 Ma), early Early Cretaceous ( 137 Ma), and late Early Cretaceous ( 123 Ma). In addition, the rocks have undergone later deformation recorded by peak ages of 137 and 123 Ma. The Late Jurassic and early Early Cretaceous intrusive rocks in the study area are dominantly syenogranites and are either A-type granites or are classified as alkaline series, suggesting that they formed in an extensional environment. The late Early Cretaceous intrusive rocks in this area are generally monzogranitic and were emplaced as dikes in an extensional environment, along with coeval bimodal volcanics. These data, combined with the presence of regional unconformities in the northern part of Hebei Province and western part of Liaoning Province, and the spatial distribution of coeval volcanic rocks in NE China, suggest the Late Jurassic and early Early Cretaceous magmatisms and the early Early Cretaceous deformation in this area occurred in an extensional environment related to the delamination of a thickened part of the crust after closure of the Mongol-Okhotsk Ocean. In comparison, the late Early Cretaceous deformation and magmatism occurred in an extensional environment related to either delamination of the previously thickened crust related to the Mongol-Okhotsk tectonic regime or the subduction of the Paleo-Pacific Plate, or the combined influence of these two tectonic regimes.

  13. Trace fossil evidence for late Permian shallow water condition in Guryul ravine, Kashmir, India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parcha, Suraj; Horacek, Micha; Krystyn, Leopold; Pandey, Shivani

    2015-04-01

    The present study is focused on the Late Permian (Changhsingian) succession, present in the Guryul ravine, Kashmir Basin. The basin has a complete Cambro-Triassic sequence and thus contains a unique position in the geology of Himalaya. The Guryul Ravine Permian mainly comprises of mixed siliciclastic-carbonate sediments deposited in a shallow-shelf or ramp setting. The present assemblage of Ichnofossils is the first significant report of trace fossils in the Guryul ravine since early reports in the 1970s. The Ichnofossils reported from this section include: Diplichnites, Dimorphichnus, Monomorphichnus, Planolites, Skolithos along with burrow, scratch marks and annelid worm traces?. The ichnofossils are mainly preserved in medium grain sandstone-mudstone facies. The Ichnofossils are widely distributed throughout the section and are mostly belonging to arthropods and annelid origin, showing behavioral activity, mainly dwelling and feeding, and evidence the dominant presence of deposit feeders. The vertical to slightly inclined biogenic structures are commonly recognized from semi-consolidated substrate which are characteristic features of the near shore/foreshore marine environment, with moderate to high energy conditions. The topmost layer of silty shale contains trace fossils like Skolithos and poorly preserved burrows. The burrow material filled is same as that of host rock. The studied Zewan C and D sequence represents the early to late part of the Changhsingian stage, from 40 to 5 m below the top of Zewan D member with bioturbation still evident in some limestone layers till 2 metres above. No trace fossils could be recognized in the topmost 3 m beds of Zewan D due to their gliding related amalgamated structure. The widespread distribution of traces and their in situ nature will be useful for interpretation of the paleoecological and paleoenvironmental conditions during the late Permian in the Guryul ravine of Kashmir.

  14. Three new species of mesosciophilid gnats from the Middle-Late Jurassic of China (insecta: Diptera: Nematocera: Mesosciophilidae).

    PubMed

    Zhang, J F

    2008-11-15

    Three extinct new species from the Callovian or Oxfordian (uppermost Middle Jurassic or lowermost Upper Jurassic) Daohugou beds in Inner Mongolia, China is described as Mesosciophila abstracta sp. n., Mesosciophilodes synchrona sp. n. and Paramesosciophilodes eximia sp. n. (Family Mesosciophilidae). All the records of mesosciophilid gnats are briefly reviewed.

  15. A new, nearly complete stem turtle from the Jurassic of South America with implications for turtle evolution.

    PubMed

    Sterli, Juliana

    2008-06-23

    Turtles have been known since the Upper Triassic (210Myr old); however, fossils recording the first steps of turtle evolution are scarce and often fragmentary. As a consequence, one of the main questions is whether living turtles (Testudines) originated during the Late Triassic (210Myr old) or during the Middle to Late Jurassic (ca 160Myr old). The discovery of the new fossil turtle, Condorchelys antiqua gen. et sp. nov. from the Middle to Upper Jurassic (ca 160-146Myr old) of South America (Patagonia, Argentina), presented here sheds new light on early turtle evolution. An updated cladistic analysis of turtles shows that C. antiqua and other fossil turtles are not crown turtles, but stem turtles. This cladistic analysis also shows that stem turtles were more diverse than previously thought, and that until the Middle to Upper Jurassic there were turtles without the modern jaw closure mechanism.

  16. Dike orientations in the late jurassic independence dike swarm and implications for vertical-axis tectonic rotations in eastern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hopson, R.F.; Hillhouse, J.W.; Howard, K.A.

    2008-01-01

    Analysis of the strikes of 3841 dikes in 47 domains in the 500-km-long Late Jurassic Independence dike swarm indicates a distribution that is skewed clockwise from the dominant northwest strike. Independence dike swarm azimuths tend to cluster near 325?? ?? 30??, consistent with initial subparallel intrusion along much of the swarm. Dike azimuths in a quarter of the domains vary widely from the dominant trend. In domains in the essentially unrotated Sierra Nevada block, mean dike azimuths range mostly between 300?? and 320??, with the exception of Mount Goddard (247??). Mean dike azimuths in domains in the Basin and Range Province in the Argus, Inyo, and White Mountains areas range from 291?? to 354?? the mean is 004?? in the El Paso Mountains. In the Mojave Desert, mean dike azimuths range from 318?? to 023??, and in the eastern Transverse Ranges, they range from 316?? to 051??. Restoration for late Cenozoic vertical-axis rotations, suggested by paleodeclinations determined from published studies from nearby Miocene and younger rocks, shifts dike azimuths into better agreement with azimuths measured in the tectonically stable Sierra Nevada. This confirms that vertical-axis tectonic rotations explain some of the dispersion in orientation, especially in the Mojave Desert and eastern Transverse Ranges, and that the dike orientations can be a useful if imperfect guide to tectonic rotations where paleomagnetic data do not exist. Large deviations from the main trend of the swarm may reflect (1) clockwise rotations for which there is no paleomagnetic evidence available, (2) dike intrusions of other ages, (3) crack filling at angles oblique or perpendicular to the main swarm, (4) pre-Miocene rotations, or (5) unrecognized domain boundaries between dike localities and sites with paleomagnetic determinations. ?? 2008 The Geological Society of America.

  17. A New Non-Pterodactyloid Pterosaur from the Late Jurassic of Southern Germany

    PubMed Central

    Hone, David W. E.; Tischlinger, Helmut; Frey, Eberhard; Röper, Martin

    2012-01-01

    Background The ‘Solnhofen Limestone’ beds of the Southern Franconian Alb, Bavaria, southern Germany, have for centuries yielded important pterosaur specimens, most notably of the genera Pterodactylus and Rhamphorhynchus. Here we describe a new genus of non-pterodactyloid pterosaur based on an extremely well preserved fossil of a young juvenile: Bellubrunnus rothgaengeri (gen. et sp. nov.). Methodology/Principal Findings The specimen was examined firsthand by all authors. Additional investigation and photography under UV light to reveal details of the bones not easily seen under normal lighting regimes was completed. Conclusions/Significance This taxon heralds from a newly explored locality that is older than the classic Solnhofen beds. While similar to Rhamphorhynchus, the new taxon differs in the number of teeth, shape of the humerus and femur, and limb proportions. Unlike other derived non-pterodacytyloids, Bellubrunnus lacks elongate chevrons and zygapophyses in the tail, and unlike all other known pterosaurs, the wingtips are curved anteriorly, potentially giving it a unique flight profile. PMID:22792168

  18. An early extensional event of the South China Block during the Late Mesozoic recorded by the emplacement of the Late Jurassic syntectonic Hengshan Composite Granitic Massif (Hunan, SE China)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Wei; Chen, Yan; Faure, Michel; Martelet, Guillaume; Lin, Wei; Wang, Qingchen; Yan, Quanren; Hou, Quanlin

    2016-03-01

    Continental scaled extension is the major Late Mesozoic (Jurassic and Cretaceous) tectonic event in East Asia, characterized by faulting, magmatic intrusions and half-grabens in an area with a length of > 5000 km and a width of > 1000 km. Numerous studies have been conducted on this topic in the South China Block (SCB), However, the space and time ranges of the compressional or extensional regimes of the SCB during the Jurassic are still unclear, partly due to the lack of structural data. The emplacement fabrics of granitic plutons can help determine the regional tectonic background. In this study, a multidisciplinary approach, including Anisotropy of Magnetic Susceptibility (AMS), macro and microstructural analyses, quartz c-axis preferred orientation, gravity modeling and monazite EPMA dating, was conducted on the Hengshan composite granitic massif in SCB that consists of the Triassic Nanyue biotite granitic pluton and the Late Jurassic Baishifeng two-mica granitic pluton. The magnetic fabrics are characterized by a consistent NW-SE oriented lineation and weakly inclined foliation. A dominant high temperature deformation with a top-to-the-NW shear sense is identified for both plutons. The deformation increasing from the center of the Baishifeng pluton to its western border is associated to the development of the West Hengshan Boundary Fault (WHBF). The gravity modeling shows a "saw tooth-shaped" NE-SW oriented structure of the Baishifeng pluton, which may be considered as NE-SW oriented tension-gashes formed due to the NW-SE extension. All results show that the Triassic Nanyue pluton was deformed under post-solidus conditions by the WHBF coeval with the emplacement of the Late Jurassic Baishifeng pluton. All these observations comply with the NW-SE extensional tectonics coeval with the emplacement of the Baishifeng pluton, which argues that the NW-SE crustal stretching started since the Late Jurassic, at least in this part of the SCB.

  19. On Mesopithecus habitat: Insights from late Miocene fossil vertebrate localities of Bulgaria.

    PubMed

    Clavel, Julien; Merceron, Gildas; Hristova, Latinka; Spassov, Nikolaï; Kovachev, Dimitar; Escarguel, Gilles

    2012-07-01

    The aim of this study is to describe the environments where the cercopithecid Mesopithecus was found during latest Miocene in Europe. For this purpose, we investigate the paleoecology of the herbivorous ungulate mesofauna of three very rich late Miocene fossil localities from southwestern Bulgaria: Hadjidimovo, Kalimantsi and Strumyani. While Mesopithecus has been found in the two first localities, no primate remains have yet been identified in Strumyani. Comparison between localities with and without primates using the herbivore mesofauna allows the cross-corroboration of paleoenvironmental conditions where this primate did and did not live. A multi-parameter statistical approach involving 117 equid and 345 bovid fossil dental and postcranial (phalanges, metapodia, astragali) remains from these three localities provides species to generic-level diet and locomotor habit information in order to characterize the environment in which Mesopithecus evolved. The analysis of dental mesowear indicates that the bovids were mainly mixed feeders, while coeval equids were more engaged in grazing. Meanwhile, postcranial remains show that the ungulate species from Hadjidimovo and Kalimantsi evolved in dry environments with a continuum of habitats ranging from slightly wooded areas to relatively open landscapes, whereas the Mesopithecus-free Strumyani locality was in comparison reflecting a rather contrasted mosaic of environments with predominant open and some more closed and wet areas. Environments in which Mesopithecus is known during the late Miocene were not contrasted landscapes combining open grassy areas and dense forested patches, but instead rather restricted to slightly wooded and homogeneous landscapes including a developed grassy herbaceous layer.

  20. Ribosomal RNA gene fragments from fossilized cyanobacteria identified in primary gypsum from the late Miocene, Italy.

    PubMed

    Panieri, G; Lugli, S; Manzi, V; Roveri, M; Schreiber, B C; Palinska, K A

    2010-03-01

    Earth scientists have searched for signs of microscopic life in ancient samples of permafrost, ice, deep-sea sediments, amber, salt and chert. Until now, evidence of cyanobacteria has not been reported in any studies of ancient DNA older than a few thousand years. Here, we investigate morphologically, biochemically and genetically primary evaporites deposited in situ during the late Miocene (Messinian) Salinity Crisis from the north-eastern Apennines of Italy. The evaporites contain fossilized bacterial structures having identical morphological forms as modern microbes. We successfully extracted and amplified genetic material belonging to ancient cyanobacteria from gypsum crystals dating back to 5.910-5.816 Ma, when the Mediterranean became a giant hypersaline brine pool. This finding represents the oldest ancient cyanobacterial DNA to date. Our clone library and its phylogenetic comparison with present cyanobacterial populations point to a marine origin for the depositional basin. This investigation opens the possibility of including fossil cyanobacterial DNA into the palaeo-reconstruction of various environments and could also be used to quantify the ecological importance of cyanobacteria through geological time. These genetic markers serve as biosignatures providing important clues about ancient life and begin a new discussion concerning the debate on the origin of late Miocene evaporites in the Mediterranean.

  1. Post-Late Jurassic, pre-late Eocene strike-slip faulting in west-central Utah

    SciTech Connect

    Robinson, J.P.

    1993-04-01

    Two events of strike-slip faulting interpreted to be of Late Mesozoic-Early Tertiary age are recorded in the northern Deep Creek Mountains. These fault systems display principal detachment zones that strike N50W and N84E. Both fault systems are manifested as fault mosaics, locally anastomosing with local duplex formation. They are interpreted to represent first-order structures that operated independently of other strain regimes. A quartz monzonite stock dated 38 Ma displays strong control of the intrusion by the NW-striking faults. That, in addition to cross-cutting relationships between the NW-striking faults and a granodiorite dated 152 Ma place age constraints on the strike-slip faulting. The ENE-striking faults are younger than the NW-striking faults and are interpreted to be older than the quartz monzonite, although this relationship is ambiguous. Strike-separation on the major NW-striking faults is on the order of 3 km. Offsets of similar magnitude or greater are interpreted for the ENE-striking faults, although this remains unquantified. Despite the small area of influence, relatively minor displacements, and broad time frame of occurrence, these faults have some regional significance. If Cretaceous-aged, the strike-slip faults are markedly different than the extensional structures that formed in the internal zone' of the Cordilleran thrust belt. If Tertiary-aged, the strike-slip faults represent an age of structure with few documented examples in the eastern Basin and Range.

  2. First record of the fossil snakefly genus Mesoraphidia (Insecta: Raphidioptera: Mesoraphidiidae) from the Middle Jurassic of China, with description of a new species.

    PubMed

    Lü, Ya-Nan; Liu, Xingyue; Dong, Ren

    2015-08-12

    Mesoraphidia daohugouensis sp. nov. is described from the Middle Jurassic Jiulongshan Formation of Inner Mongolia, China. It is diagnosed by the following character states: subquadrate pronotum, narrowly elliptical forewing, distally darkened pterostigma closed respectively by a proximal costal crossvein and a distal radial veinlet, absence of pterostigmal crossvein. The new species represents the first record of Mesoraphidiinae from the Middle Jurassic of China.

  3. Petrosal anatomy and inner ear structures of the Late Jurassic Henkelotherium (Mammalia, Cladotheria, Dryolestoidea): insight into the early evolution of the ear region in cladotherian mammals

    PubMed Central

    Ruf, Irina; Luo, Zhe-Xi; Wible, John R; Martin, Thomas

    2009-01-01

    The petrosal anatomy and inner ear structure of Jurassic cladotherian mammals represent the ancestral morphological conditions (groundplan) from which modern therian mammals (marsupials and placentals) have evolved. We present the reconstruction of the petrosal and inner ear features of the Late Jurassic dryolestoid mammal Henkelotherium guimarotae from high-resolution computed tomography and three-dimensional imaging analysis. This study of Henkelotherium revealed a combination of derived and primitive features, including: cladotherian apomorphies, such as the promontorial sulcus for the internal carotid artery and reduced lateral trough; trechnotherian characters, such as an enclosed cochlear canaliculus for the perilymphatic duct, post-promontorial tympanic sinus and caudal tympanic process; in addition to plesiomorphic mammalian features, such as the cavum supracochleare and prootic canal. The inner ear of Henkelotherium shows a division between the utricle and saccule, a cochlear canal coiled through at least 270°, a distinctive primary bony lamina for the basilar membrane, and a secondary bony lamina. The development of the primary and secondary bony laminae in the cochlear canal is suggested here to be correlated with the concurrent coiling of the bony canal and membranous duct of the inner ear cochlea, apomorphies of the more inclusive cladotherian clade that also represent the ancestral morphotype of modern therian mammals. Because these features are crucial for high-frequency hearing in extant therian mammals, their early appearance in Late Jurassic cladotherians suggests a more ancient origination for high-frequency hearing in mammalian history than previously thought. PMID:19438763

  4. The Cranial Osteology and Feeding Ecology of the Metriorhynchid Crocodylomorph Genera Dakosaurus and Plesiosuchus from the Late Jurassic of Europe

    PubMed Central

    Young, Mark T.; Brusatte, Stephen L.; de Andrade, Marco Brandalise; Desojo, Julia B.; Beatty, Brian L.; Steel, Lorna; Fernández, Marta S.; Sakamoto, Manabu; Ruiz-Omeñaca, Jose Ignacio; Schoch, Rainer R.

    2012-01-01

    Background Dakosaurus and Plesiosuchus are characteristic genera of aquatic, large-bodied, macrophagous metriorhynchid crocodylomorphs. Recent studies show that these genera were apex predators in marine ecosystems during the latter part of the Late Jurassic, with robust skulls and strong bite forces optimized for feeding on large prey. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we present comprehensive osteological descriptions and systematic revisions of the type species of both genera, and in doing so we resurrect the genus Plesiosuchus for the species Dakosaurus manselii. Both species are diagnosed with numerous autapomorphies. Dakosaurus maximus has premaxillary ‘lateral plates’; strongly ornamented maxillae; macroziphodont dentition; tightly fitting tooth-to-tooth occlusion; and extensive macrowear on the mesial and distal margins. Plesiosuchus manselii is distinct in having: non-amblygnathous rostrum; long mandibular symphysis; microziphodont teeth; tooth-crown apices that lack spalled surfaces or breaks; and no evidence for occlusal wear facets. Our phylogenetic analysis finds Dakosaurus maximus to be the sister taxon of the South American Dakosaurus andiniensis, and Plesiosuchus manselii in a polytomy at the base of Geosaurini (the subclade of macrophagous metriorhynchids that includes Dakosaurus, Geosaurus and Torvoneustes). Conclusions/Significance The sympatry of Dakosaurus and Plesiosuchus is curiously similar to North Atlantic killer whales, which have one larger ‘type’ that lacks tooth-crown breakage being sympatric with a smaller ‘type’ that has extensive crown breakage. Assuming this morphofunctional complex is indicative of diet, then Plesiosuchus would be a specialist feeding on other marine reptiles while Dakosaurus would be a generalist and possible suction-feeder. This hypothesis is supported by Plesiosuchus manselii having a very large optimum gape (gape at which multiple teeth come into contact with a prey-item), while Dakosaurus

  5. Evolutionary History of Atmospheric CO2 during the Late Cenozoic from Fossilized Metasequoia Needles

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yuqing; Momohara, Arata; Wang, Li; Lebreton-Anberrée, Julie; Zhou, Zhekun

    2015-01-01

    The change in ancient atmospheric CO2 concentrations provides important clues for understanding the relationship between the atmospheric CO2 concentration and global temperature. However, the lack of CO2 evolution curves estimated from a single terrestrial proxy prevents the understanding of climatic and environmental impacts due to variations in data. Thus, based on the stomatal index of fossilized Metasequoia needles, we reconstructed a history of atmospheric CO2 concentrations from middle Miocene to late Early Pleistocene when the climate changed dramatically. According to this research, atmospheric CO2 concentration was stabile around 330–350 ppmv in the middle and late Miocene, then it decreased to 278–284 ppmv during the Late Pliocene and to 277–279 ppmv during the Early Pleistocene, which was almost the same range as in preindustrial time. According to former research, this is a time when global temperature decreased sharply. Our results also indicated that from middle Miocene to Pleistocene, global CO2 level decreased by more than 50 ppmv, which may suggest that CO2 decrease and temperature decrease are coupled. PMID:26154449

  6. Evolutionary History of Atmospheric CO2 during the Late Cenozoic from Fossilized Metasequoia Needles.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yuqing; Momohara, Arata; Wang, Li; Lebreton-Anberrée, Julie; Zhou, Zhekun

    2015-01-01

    The change in ancient atmospheric CO2 concentrations provides important clues for understanding the relationship between the atmospheric CO2 concentration and global temperature. However, the lack of CO2 evolution curves estimated from a single terrestrial proxy prevents the understanding of climatic and environmental impacts due to variations in data. Thus, based on the stomatal index of fossilized Metasequoia needles, we reconstructed a history of atmospheric CO2 concentrations from middle Miocene to late Early Pleistocene when the climate changed dramatically. According to this research, atmospheric CO2 concentration was stabile around 330-350 ppmv in the middle and late Miocene, then it decreased to 278-284 ppmv during the Late Pliocene and to 277-279 ppmv during the Early Pleistocene, which was almost the same range as in preindustrial time. According to former research, this is a time when global temperature decreased sharply. Our results also indicated that from middle Miocene to Pleistocene, global CO2 level decreased by more than 50 ppmv, which may suggest that CO2 decrease and temperature decrease are coupled.

  7. Provenance of Late Carboniferous to Jurassic sandstones for southern Taimyr, Arctic Russia: A comparison of heavy mineral analysis by optical and QEMSCAN methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Xiaojing; Pease, Victoria; Omma, Jenny; Benedictus, Aukje

    2015-11-01

    Sandstone framework-grain petrography, optical and QEMSCAN (Quantitative Evaluation of Minerals by Scanning Electron Microscopy) heavy mineral analysis carried out on 40 samples collected from east and west southern Taimyr are used to constrain the provenance and tectonic history of Late Carboniferous to Late Jurassic siliciclastic sequences. The tectonic settings of provenance evolved gradually from a mix of volcanic arc and recycled orogen to craton interior. Much of the detritus in the Late Paleozoic to Mesozoic siliciclastic succession came from proximal sources with contributions from multi-type source rocks including acid igneous rocks, basalts, sedimentary rocks and low to medium-grade metamorphic rocks. Carboniferous to Permian sandstones contain low-diversity suites of heavy minerals, including apatite, tourmaline, zircon, rutile, Cr-spinel, monazite and titanite. Cr-spinel indicates probable influx from exposed ophiolitic basement. Abundant euhedral zircon and apatite suggest a volcanic arc source related with Uralian collision. The appearance of garnet in the early Triassic signals the unroofing of a metamorphic source. The abrupt increase of clinopyroxene in Middle to Late Triassic sandstones indicates the influx of detritus from basic rocks related with Siberian Trap magmatism. The decrease of Cr-spinel and an abundance of staurolite in Jurassic samples indicate that unroofing of an ophiolitic source ceased and that stripping of a different thrust sheet containing plenty of staurolite-bearing metamorphic rocks commenced.

  8. Fossil birds from the Late Cretaceous Los Alamitos Formation, Río Negro Province, Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Agnolin, Federico L.; Martinelli, Agustín G.

    2009-02-01

    In this note we report new avian remains from the Late Cretaceous Los Alamitos Formation (Campanian-Maastrichtian) at the Los Alamitos locality, Río Negro Province, Argentina. Isolated remains referable to indeterminate Aves, ?Patagopterygiformes, indeterminate Ornithurae, cf. Hesperornithes and cf. Neornithes are described and discussed. The new genus and species Alamitornis minutus is erected to include a minute-sized and gracile bird, probably related to the non-volant ratite-like bird Patagopteryx. If correctly identified, the record of Hesperornithes may be the first for this group in the Southern Hemisphere. The Los Alamitos paleoavifauna represents one of the most diverse fossil bird assemblage from the Mesozoic of Gondwana known to date.

  9. Palaeoclimatic conditions in the Late Triassic-Early Jurassic of southern Africa: A geochemical assessment of the Elliot Formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sciscio, Lara; Bordy, Emese M.

    2016-07-01

    The Triassic-Jurassic boundary marks a global faunal turnover event that is generally considered as the third largest of five major biological crises in the Phanerozoic geological record of Earth. Determining the controlling factors of this event and their relative contributions to the biotic turnover associated with it is on-going globally. The Upper Triassic and Lower Jurassic rock record of southern Africa presents a unique opportunity for better constraining how and why the biosphere was affected at this time not only because the succession is richly fossiliferous, but also because it contains important palaeoenvironmental clues. Using mainly sedimentary geochemical proxies (i.e., major, trace and rare earth elements), our study is the first quantitative assessment of the palaeoclimatic conditions during the deposition of the Elliot Formation, a continental red bed succession that straddles the Triassic-Jurassic boundary in southern Africa. Employing clay mineralogy as well as the indices of chemical alteration and compositional variability, our results confirm earlier qualitative sedimentological studies and indicate that the deposition of the Upper Triassic and Lower Jurassic Elliot Formation occurred under increasingly dry environmental conditions that inhibited chemical weathering in this southern part of Pangea. Moreover, the study questions the universal validity of those studies that suggest a sudden increase in humidity for the Lower Jurassic record and supports predictions of long-term global warming after continental flood basalt emplacement.

  10. Late Miocene fossils from shallow marine sediments in Brunei Darussalam: systematics, palaeoenvironment and ecology.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roslim, Amajida; Briguglio, Antonino; Kocsis, László; Ćorić, Stjepan; Razak, Hazirah

    2016-04-01

    The geology of Brunei Darussalam is fascinating but difficult to approach: rainforests and heavy precipitation tend to erode and smoothen the landscape limiting rocks exposure, whereas abundant constructions sites and active quarries allow the creation of short time available outcrop, which have to be immediately sampled. The stratigraphy of Brunei Darussalam comprises mainly Neogene sediments deposited in a wave to tide dominated shallow marine environment in a pure siliciclastic system. Thick and heavily bioturbated sandstone layers alternate to claystone beds which occasionally yield an extraordinary abundance and diversity of fossils. The sandstones, when not bioturbated, are commonly characterized by a large variety of sedimentary structures (e.g., ripple marks, planar laminations and cross beddings). In this study, we investigate the sediments and the fossil assemblages to record the palaeoenvironmental evolution of the shallow marine environment during the late Miocene, in terms of sea level change, chemostratigraphy and sedimentation rate. The study area is one of the best in terms of accessibility, extension, abundance and preservation of fossils; it is located in the region -'Bukit Ambug' (Ambug Hill), Tutong District. The fossils fauna collected encompasses mollusks, decapods, otoliths, shark and ray teeth, amber, foraminifera and coccolithophorids. In this investigation, sediment samples were taken along a section which measures 62.5 meters. A thick clay layer of 9 meters was sampled each 30 cm to investigate microfossils occurrences. Each sample was treated in peroxide and then sieved trough 63 μm, 150μm, 250μm, 450μm, 600μm, 1mm and 2mm sieves. Results point on the changes in biodiversity of foraminifera along the different horizons collected reflecting sea level changes and sediment production. The most abundant taxa identified are Pseoudorotalia schroeteriana, Ampistegina lessonii, Elphidium advenum, Quinqueloculina sp., Bolivina sp

  11. Late Quaternary paleoclimate of western Alaska inferred from fossil chironomids and its relation to vegetation histories

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kurek, Joshua; Cwynar, Les C.; Ager, Thomas A.; Abbott, Mark B.; Edwards, Mary E.

    2009-01-01

    Fossil Chironomidae assemblages (with a few Chaoboridae and Ceratopogonidae) from Zagoskin and Burial Lakes in western Alaska provide quantitative reconstructions of mean July air temperatures for periods of the late-middle Wisconsin (~39,000-34,000 cal yr B.P.) to the present. Inferred temperatures are compared with previously analyzed pollen data from each site summarized here by indirect ordination. Paleotemperature trends reveal substantial differences in the timing of climatic warming following the late Wisconsin at each site, although chronological uncertainty exists. Zagoskin Lake shows early warming beginning at about 21,000 cal yr B.P., whereas warming at Burial Lake begins ~4000 years later. Summer climates during the last glacial maximum (LGM) were on average ~3.5C° below the modern temperatures at each site. Major shifts in vegetation occurred from ~19,000 to 10,000 cal yr B.P. at Zagoskin Lake and from ~17,000 to 10,000 cal yr B.P. at Burial Lake. Vegetation shifts followed climatic warming, when temperatures neared modern values. Both sites provide evidence of an early postglacial thermal maximum at ~12,300 cal yr B.P. These chironomid records, combined with other insect-based climatic reconstructions from Beringia, indicate that during the LGM: (1) greater continentality likely influenced regions adjacent to the Bering Land Bridge and (2) summer climates were, at times, not dominated by severe cold.

  12. The significance of dropstones in a tropical lacustrine setting, eastern Cameros Basin (Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous, Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doublet, Stéfan; Garcia, Jean-Pierre

    2004-01-01

    Outsized clasts (mainly white quartzite pebbles) are found in carbonate deposits of the Enciso Group exposed on the northern border of the Cameros rift basin (Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous, northern Spain). In the Arnedillo section, all the stones are enclosed in micrite, which was assumed deposited in littoral to open lacustrine environments, with minor inputs of deltaic sandstones. The clasts are found in fine-grained lacustrine sediments either as isolated stones or as loosely packed elongated clusters occasionally associated with quartz sands and gravels. The mean size of the clasts is 40 mm (range: 3-100 mm); they are polished, well-rounded, and lack any faceting or striae. Lithology suggests that the clasts were potentially supplied by three stratigraphic formations cropping out in the catchment area of the Cameros lake. The occurrence of outsized stones within featureless micrite indicative of low-energy conditions involves a hydrodynamic paradox which can only be resolved by their vertical or oblique emplacement in the host sediment as dropstones. The lack of mass-flow deposits in the Enciso Group precludes gravitational processes and suggests deposition from a rafting agent. Icebergs and stone-swallowing animals are the main transport agents identified in continental settings. Here, stone swallowing is rejected as the transport mechanism because the stones are loosely packed and are never associated with skeletal remains. Ice rafting is also rejected because of the low density of clusters, and the absence of faceting and striations which characterize glacial sediments. Furthermore, the sub-tropical position of Iberia, the absence of surrounding high relief, and global climatic models for the Aptian corroborate the absence of a glaciolacustrine environment. Consequently, we propose wood rafting as an alternative depositional mechanism for dropstones in non-glacial lacustrine environments. Although no direct evidence has yet been found (i.e. stones enclosed

  13. Exceptionally well preserved late Quaternary plant and vertebrate fossils from a blue hole on Abaco, The Bahamas

    PubMed Central

    Steadman, David W.; Franz, Richard; Morgan, Gary S.; Albury, Nancy A.; Kakuk, Brian; Broad, Kenneth; Franz, Shelley E.; Tinker, Keith; Pateman, Michael P.; Lott, Terry A.; Jarzen, David M.; Dilcher, David L.

    2007-01-01

    We report Quaternary vertebrate and plant fossils from Sawmill Sink, a “blue hole” (a water-filled sinkhole) on Great Abaco Island, The Bahamas. The fossils are well preserved because of deposition in anoxic salt water. Vertebrate fossils from peat on the talus cone are radiocarbon-dated from ≈4,200 to 1,000 cal BP (Late Holocene). The peat produced skeletons of two extinct species (tortoise Chelonoidis undescribed sp. and Caracara Caracara creightoni) and two extant species no longer in The Bahamas (Cuban crocodile, Crocodylus rhombifer; and Cooper's or Gundlach's Hawk, Accipiter cooperii or Accipiter gundlachii). A different, inorganic bone deposit on a limestone ledge in Sawmill Sink is a Late Pleistocene owl roost that features lizards (one species), snakes (three species), birds (25 species), and bats (four species). The owl roost fauna includes Rallus undescribed sp. (extinct; the first Bahamian flightless rail) and four other locally extinct species of birds (Cooper's/Gundlach's Hawk, A. cooperii/gundlachii; flicker Colaptes sp.; Cave Swallow, Petrochelidon fulva; and Eastern Meadowlark, Sturnella magna) and mammals (Bahamian hutia, Geocapromys ingrahami; and a bat, Myotis sp.). The exquisitely preserved fossils from Sawmill Sink suggest a grassy pineland as the dominant plant community on Abaco in the Late Pleistocene, with a heavier component of coppice (tropical dry evergreen forest) in the Late Holocene. Important in its own right, this information also will help biologists and government planners to develop conservation programs in The Bahamas that consider long-term ecological and cultural processes. PMID:18077421

  14. Seasonality in low latitudes during the Oxfordian (Late Jurassic) reconstructed via high-resolution stable isotope analysis of the oyster Actinostreon marshi (J. Sowerby, 1814) from the Kachchh Basin, western India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alberti, Matthias; Fürsich, Franz T.; Pandey, Dhirendra K.

    2013-07-01

    A high-resolution stable isotope (δ18O, δ13C) analysis of a specimen of the oyster Actinostreon marshi (J. Sowerby, 1814) from the Lower Oxfordian of the Kachchh Basin in western India was used to reconstruct average seasonal temperatures over a consecutive time interval of 10 years. The recorded temperatures during this period varied around a mean of 13 °C (maximum: 15.1 °C; minimum: 11.4 °C) with a generally low seasonality between 1 and 3 °C. Such weak seasonal changes can be expected from a subtropical palaeolatitude between 25° and 30°S. However, the low average temperatures are in contrast to studies on broadly contemporaneous fossils from Europe and the southern Malagasy Gulf which point to much warmer conditions in these areas. It is therefore proposed that the low temperatures in the Kachchh Basin are caused by upwelling currents which influenced the north-western coast of India during the Late Jurassic.

  15. Accelerator dating of a mixed assemblage of late Pleistocene insect fossils from the Lamb Spring site, Colorado

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elias, Scott A.; Toolin, Laurence J.

    1990-01-01

    Fossil insects from the late-glacial deposits at the Lamb Spring archaeological site, near Denver, Colorado, are relatively abundant and diverse, providing considerable paleoecological data for the site. The late Pleistocene insect fauna from the site comprises 72 identified taxa, principally beetles. However, the fauna presented an interpretive problem because it contained a mixture of prairie and alpine tundra species. This was initially considered to be the result of a mixing of faunal elements during the climatic transition of late-glacial times, a "no-modern-analog" fauna. Accelerator dating of insect fossil specimens from the two ecological groups helped resolve the paleoecological problem. Fossil specimens of the prairie-associated species were dated at 17,850 ± 550 yr B.P., while specimens of the tundra-associated species yielded an age of 14,500 ± 500 yr B.P. These dates reveal that what appeared to be an ecological mixing was probably a taphonomic problem, wherein full-glacial-age fossils were probably reworked into latest Wisconsin sediments. While both faunal assemblages reflect climatic conditions substantially colder than present, initial results suggest that the full-glacial fauna represents a cold, dry grassland or steppe environment, while the younger fauna suggests moister and more tundra-like conditions.

  16. 40Ar/39Ar dating of ignimbrite from Inner Mongolia, northeastern China, indicates a post-Middle Jurassic age for the overlying Daohugou Bed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, H. Y.; Wang, X. L.; Zhou, Z. H.; Zhu, R. X.; Jin, F.; Wang, F.; Ding, X.; Boven, A.

    2004-10-01

    The 40Ar/39Ar step heating analyses of K-feldspar derived from the ignimbrite in Inner Mongolia, China indicates that they were formed at 159.8 +/- 0.8 Ma, which provides a maximum age for the overlying fossil-bearing lacustrine deposits (Daohugou Bed). This result favors a post-Middle Jurassic (Late Jurassic or younger), rather than the Middle Jurassic age for the Daohugou Bed. Such a result is generally consistent with vertebrate biostratigraphic evidence, providing a maximum known age for the first appearance of several major animal groups such as Cryptobranchidae of Urodela (salamanders) and Maniraptora (birds and their closest dinosaurian relatives).

  17. Fossil embryos from the Middle and Late Cambrian period of Hunan, south China.

    PubMed

    Dong, Xi-Ping; Donoghue, Philip C J; Cheng, Hong; Liu, Jian-Bo

    2004-01-15

    Comparative embryology is integral to uncovering the pattern and process of metazoan phylogeny, but it relies on the assumption that life histories of living taxa are representative of their antecedents. Fossil embryos provide a crucial test of this assumption and, potentially, insight into the evolution of development, but because discoveries so far lack phylogenetic constraint, their significance is moot. Here we describe a collection of embryos from the Middle and Late Cambrian period (500 million years ago) of Hunan, south China, that preserves stages of development from cleavage to the pre-hatching embryo of a direct-developing animal comparable to living Scalidophora (phyla Priapulida, Kinorhyncha, Loricifera). The latest-stage embryos show affinity to the Lower Cambrian embryo Markuelia, whose life-history strategy contrasts both with the primitive condition inferred for metazoan phyla and with many proposed hypotheses of affinity, all of which prescribe indirect development. Phylogenetic tests based on these embryological data suggest a stem Scalidophora affinity. These discoveries corroborate, rather than contradict, the predictions of comparative embryology, providing direct historical support for the view that the life-history strategies of living taxa are representative of their stem lineages.

  18. Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous sedimentary-tectonic development in the Chengde Basin, Yanshan fold-thrust belt, North China Craton

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Jian; Zhao, Yue; Liu, Ankun; Ye, Hao

    2015-12-01

    The Chengde Basin is located in the central part of the Yanshan fold-thrust belt in the northern North China Craton. The sediments in the Upper Jurassic to Lower Cretaceous Tuchengzi Formation in the Chengde Basin provide a detrital record of basin dynamics and uplift of the basin margins during that time. We analyzed the sedimentary facies, paleocurrents, and provenance of the Tuchengzi Formation in the Chengde Basin for the period of the Late Jurassic and Early Cretaceous shortening in the Yanshan fold-thrust belt. Four sedimentary facies associations have been identified in the Tuchengzi Formation, corresponding to proximal fan, mid-fan, distal alluvial fan, and fluvial facies. The transport and distribution of the Upper Jurassic to Lower Cretaceous sediments in the Chengde Basin was controlled by the faults bounding the basin. Paleocurrent indicators and provenance data of conglomerate clasts reveal that the sediments of the Tuchengzi Formation in the northern part of the Chengde Basin were delivered from source regions to the north of the basin. The early sediments of the Tuchengzi Formation in the southern part of the basin comprise a suite of fluvial deposits, similar to the fluvial sediments in the northern part of the basin, and their paleocurrent data and the compositions of conglomerate clasts also suggest a northern source. However, the subsequent sedimentation in the Tuchengzi Formation in the southern part of the basin changed markedly to proximal fan facies, with sediments being derived from the south of the basin, according to the paleocurrent data and conglomerate clast lithology. The Sandaohe sheet, which is located in the southeast limb of the Chengde syncline, is not a klippe formed as a result of long-distance northward thrusting, but an autochthonous pop-up tectonic wedge generated by N-S shortening during the Early Cretaceous sedimentation of the Tuchengzi Formation. The sedimentation ended before the onset of the Early Cretaceous volcanic

  19. New perspectives on the origin and emplacement of the Late Jurassic Fanos granite, associated with an intra-oceanic subduction within the Neotethyan Axios-Vardar Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michail, Maria; Pipera, Kyriaki; Koroneos, Antonios; Kilias, Adamantios; Ntaflos, Theodoros

    2016-10-01

    The Fanos granite occurs in the Peonias subzone of the eastern Axios-Vardar zone in northern Greece. The Fanos granite is Late Jurassic (158 ± 1 Ma) and trends N-S, intruding the Mesozoic back-arc Guevgueli ophiolitic complex. The intrusive character of the eastern contact of the Fanos granite with the host ophiolitic complex is well preserved. In turn the western contact is overprinted by a few meters thick, west- to southwest-directed semi-ductile thrust zone, of Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous age. The Fanos granite is dominated by the typical, isotropic granitoid fabric, although in some places the initial magmatic flow fabric is preserved. The main deformation recognized in the Fanos granite occurred in brittle regime and expressed by Tertiary thrust faults and Neogene-Quaternary normal to oblique normal faults. The origin as well as the possible tectonic setting of the Fanos granite is the main topics that we address in our study. Rock samples of the Fanos granite along with the adjusted Kotza Dere quartz diorite were analyzed for major and trace elements and for Sr and Nd isotopes (only the quartz diorite). The geochemical data show that the granite has peraluminous characteristics, high-K calc-alkaline affinities, and I-type features. The Sr initial isotopic values of the Fanos granite are rather low (0.7053-0.7056) while for the quartz diorite range from 0.7066 to 0.7068. The Nd initial isotopic values range from 0.51235 to 0.51240 for the granite and from 0.51222 to 0.51233 for the quartz diorite. The source of the granitic melt is interpreted to be meta-basaltic amphibolites. These amphibolites are the metamorphic products of enriched mantle melts that underplated the oceanic lithosphere. Taking into account our and published structural and geochemical data for the Fanos granite along with the tectonic data of the broader Axios-Vardar zone, we suggest that the studied granitic rocks were formed during an intra-oceanic subduction within the Neotethyan

  20. Isotopic evidence bearing on Late Triassic extinction events, Queen Charlotte Islands, British Columbia, and implications for the duration and cause of the Triassic/Jurassic mass extinction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ward, P.D.; Garrison, G.H.; Haggart, J.W.; Kring, D.A.; Beattie, M.J.

    2004-01-01

    Stable isotope analyses of Late Triassic to earliest Jurassic strata from Kennecott Point in the Queen Charlotte Islands, British Columbia, Canada shows the presence of two distinct and different organic carbon isotope anomalies at the Norian/Rhaetian and Rhaetian/Hettangian (=Triassic/Jurassic) stage boundaries. At the older of these boundaries, which is marked by the disappearance of the bivalve Monotis, the isotope record shows a series of short-lived positive excursions toward heavier values. Strata approaching this boundary show evidence of increasing anoxia. At the higher boundary, marked by the disappearance of the last remaining Triassic ammonites and over 50 species of radiolarians, the isotopic pattern consists of a series of short duration negative anomalies. The two events, separated by the duration of the Rhaetian age, comprise the end-Triassic mass extinction. While there is no definitive evidence as to cause, the isotopic record does not appear similar to that of the impact-caused Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary extinction. ?? 2004 Published by Elsevier B.V.

  1. Isotopic evidence bearing on Late Triassic extinction events, Queen Charlotte Islands, British Columbia, and implications for the duration and cause of the Triassic/Jurassic mass extinction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ward, Peter D.; Garrison, Geoffrey H.; Haggart, James W.; Kring, David A.; Beattie, Michael J.

    2004-08-01

    Stable isotope analyses of Late Triassic to earliest Jurassic strata from Kennecott Point in the Queen Charlotte Islands, British Columbia, Canada shows the presence of two distinct and different organic carbon isotope anomalies at the Norian/Rhaetian and Rhaetian/Hettangian (=Triassic/Jurassic) stage boundaries. At the older of these boundaries, which is marked by the disappearance of the bivalve Monotis, the isotope record shows a series of short-lived positive excursions toward heavier values. Strata approaching this boundary show evidence of increasing anoxia. At the higher boundary, marked by the disappearance of the last remaining Triassic ammonites and over 50 species of radiolarians, the isotopic pattern consists of a series of short duration negative anomalies. The two events, separated by the duration of the Rhaetian age, comprise the end-Triassic mass extinction. While there is no definitive evidence as to cause, the isotopic record does not appear similar to that of the impact-caused Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary extinction.

  2. Central Appalachian Valley and Ridge Province Cenozoic igneous activity and its relation in space and time with the Late Jurassic rift-to-drift-related alkalic dikes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, R.; Schultz, L.; Hendriks, B. W.; Harbor, D. J.; Connors, C. D.

    2011-12-01

    A Swarm of Late Jurassic alkalic intrusions, geographically limited mainly to the Augusta County in western Virginia has been studied geochemically. These dykes were emplaced along a northwest-southeast cross-strike basement fracture zone during Mesozoic extension. However, not all igneous rocks in Virginia are Jurassic; published K-Ar ages already suggested an Eocene age activity around Monterey, VA. We systematically sampled and studied these rocks geochemically and used the Ar-Ar dating technique to define a more precise age for this youngest volcanic activity East of the Mississippi. The younger igneous bodies have traditionally been interpreted as intrusive bodies representing old plumbing systems of eroded volcanic centers. This hypothesis is based on studies of aphanitic to porphyritic and occasionally vesicular hard rocks from quarries and road cuts. Pyroclastic deposits have mainly been neglected during theses earlier studies. However additional petrographic studies of volcanic sediments are able to shed light not only on the volcanic nature of these pyroclastic rocks but also on eruption mechanisms and magma crust interactions. Our petrographic studies indicate that these volcanic sediments contain different clasts of igneous and sedimentary country rocks (sandstones and limestones of different formations), fresh glass shards and crystals of predominantly pyroxene, hornblende and micas. A previously unmapped, massive, m-thick andesitic pyroclastic deposit has been studied in detail to shed light on the formation of theses volcanic sediments. Field relations and observations (e.g. denser rock fragments are enriched in the lower part of the sequence and bedding is largely parallel to the present topography) are consistent with a massive welded ignimbrite. As a result, surface erosion after the eruption must be less significant than previously believed and some rocks are clearly volcanic in nature. Petrogenetically the Jurassic magmas are much more alkalic

  3. Finding of two new radiolarian associations calibrated with ammonoids in the Vaca Muerta Formation (Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous), Neuquén Basin, Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vennari, Verónica V.; Pujana, Ignacio

    2017-04-01

    An association of ammonoids and radiolarians retrieved from a sedimentary section of the Vaca Muerta Formation at Vega de Escalone, Neuquén Basin, Argentina, was analized under a strict stratigraphic control. Nine ammonoid assemblage biozones were identified, indicating an age span from Early Tithonian to Late Berriasian/earlymost Valanginian for the Vaca Muerta Formation at the studied section. In connection to the ammonoid record, two radiolarian faunas were identified and named J3A1 and J3B1. Fauna J3A1, corresponding to the Virgatosphinctes andesensis Biozone, is dominated by nasellarian genera and represents the first Lower Tithonian radiolarian fauna described from the Neuquén Basin. Fauna J3B1, linked to the interval assigned to the Substeueroceras koeneni Biozone (Late Tithonian-Early Berriasian), yields abundant representatives of the Pantanellid Family. The presence of Complexapora kozuri (Kiessling and Zeiss) and Loopus primitivus (Matsuoka and Yao), two important radiolarian primary markers of the Late Jurassic in North America, supports a Late Tithonian age for at least part of the S. koeneni Biozone in the studied area. Nor certain Berriasian radiolarian faunas nor elements of the Vallupinae Family were identified so far at the Vega de Escalone section.

  4. Trace element signature of Late Jurassic siliciclastic-carbonate sedimentary strata from western Montana, southeastern British Columbia and southern Alberta

    SciTech Connect

    Sablock, J. . Dept. of Geosciences)

    1992-01-01

    A trace element signature, a characteristic pattern of enrichment and depletion of trace elements, was determined for a group of siliciclastic-carbonate Oxfordian and Kimmeridgian sedimentary strata, collected from outcrops in western Montana, southeastern British Columbia and southern Alberta. The average values, by petrofacies, of 10 major and 18 trace elements were measured for 40 samples. These data were normalized to Upper Continental Crust (UCC), and plotted against averaged published values of graywackes from the same facies. The rare earth elements (REEs), as well as Ti, Zr, Nb and Y are considered immobile even through diagenesis, and at least low level metamorphism. So these elements should form a reliable part of the geochemical signature. Compared to UCC and average graywacke, Jurassic samples are very depleted in Zr, Nb and Y. Oxfordian samples have slightly higher rare earth element values, i.e. La, Ce and Nd, than either other Jurassic samples or average graywacke. The most likely source of REE values are garnets and tourmaline which occur as inclusions in monocrystalline quartz grains. This pattern, and petrological study, point to a sedimentary source area, deficient in feldspar, heavy minerals and rock fragments. The consistency of the signature throughout this time may indicate slow uplift of a widespread sedimentary source area, or could be an effect of greater mixing and shorter residence time of dissolved materials in an epeiric sea.

  5. High resolution reservoir architecture of late Jurassic Haynesville ramp carbonates in the Gladewater field, East Texas Salt Basin

    SciTech Connect

    Goldhammer, R.K.

    1996-12-31

    The East Texas Salt Basin contains numerous gas fields within Upper Jurassic Haynesville ramp-complex reservoirs. A sequenced-keyed, high-resolution zonation scheme was developed for the Haynesville Formation in Gladewater field by integrating core description, well-log, seismic, porosity and permeability data. The Haynesville at Gladewater represents a high-energy ramp system, localized on paleotopographic highs induced by diapirism of Callovian Age Salt (Louann). Ramp crest grainstones serve as reservoirs. We have mapped the distribution of reservoir facies within a hierarchy of upward-shallowing parasequences grouped into low-frequency sequences. The vertical stacking patterns of parasequences and sequences reflect the interplay of eustasy, sediment accumulation patterns, and local subsidence (including salt movement and compaction). In this study we draw on regional relations from analogous, Jurassic systems in Mexico to constrain the stratigraphic architecture, age model, and facies model. Additionally, salt-cored Holocene, grain-rich shoals from the Persian Gulf provide excellent facies analogs. The result is a new high-resolution analysis of reservoir architecture at a parasequence scale that links reservoir facies to depositional facies. The new stratigraphy scheme demonstrates that different geographic portions of the field have markedly distinct reservoir intervals, both in terms of total pay and the sequence-stratigraphic interval within which it occurs. Results from this study are used to evaluate infill drill well potential, in well planning, for updating reservoir models, and in refining field reserve estimates.

  6. High resolution reservoir architecture of late Jurassic Haynesville ramp carbonates in the Gladewater field, East Texas Salt Basin

    SciTech Connect

    Goldhammer, R.K. )

    1996-01-01

    The East Texas Salt Basin contains numerous gas fields within Upper Jurassic Haynesville ramp-complex reservoirs. A sequenced-keyed, high-resolution zonation scheme was developed for the Haynesville Formation in Gladewater field by integrating core description, well-log, seismic, porosity and permeability data. The Haynesville at Gladewater represents a high-energy ramp system, localized on paleotopographic highs induced by diapirism of Callovian Age Salt (Louann). Ramp crest grainstones serve as reservoirs. We have mapped the distribution of reservoir facies within a hierarchy of upward-shallowing parasequences grouped into low-frequency sequences. The vertical stacking patterns of parasequences and sequences reflect the interplay of eustasy, sediment accumulation patterns, and local subsidence (including salt movement and compaction). In this study we draw on regional relations from analogous, Jurassic systems in Mexico to constrain the stratigraphic architecture, age model, and facies model. Additionally, salt-cored Holocene, grain-rich shoals from the Persian Gulf provide excellent facies analogs. The result is a new high-resolution analysis of reservoir architecture at a parasequence scale that links reservoir facies to depositional facies. The new stratigraphy scheme demonstrates that different geographic portions of the field have markedly distinct reservoir intervals, both in terms of total pay and the sequence-stratigraphic interval within which it occurs. Results from this study are used to evaluate infill drill well potential, in well planning, for updating reservoir models, and in refining field reserve estimates.

  7. Petrogenesis of Late Jurassic granodiorites from Gutian, Fujian Province, South China: Implications for multiple magma sources and origin of porphyry Cu-Mo mineralization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Bin; Jiang, Shao-Yong; Lu, An-Huai; Lai, Jian-Qing; Zhao, Kui-Dong; Yang, Tao

    2016-11-01

    The Gutian porphyry Cu-Mo deposit is a newly proved porphyry copper deposit in the coastal South China associated with granodioritic porphyries. In this study, zircon U-Pb ages and Hf isotope data, as well as geochemical and Sr-Nd-Pb-Re-Os isotopic compositions, are reported for these intrusions and minerals. Both zircon U-Pb and molybdenite Re-Os dating suggest that the Gutian granodiorite porphyries and related mineralization formed at 160 Ma. The Gutian granodiorites show a low-Mg adakitic geochemical affinity, with relatively high K2O but low Cr and Ni contents. These rocks have initial (87Sr/86Sr)i ratios of 0.7085 to 0.7097, negative εNd(t) values (- 12.5 to - 7.8), (206Pb/204Pb)t ratios of 18.048 to 18.241, (207Pb/204Pb)t ratios of 15.609 to 15.628, and (208Pb/204Pb)t ratios of 38.494 to 38.667. Zircons from the granodiorites have negative εHf(t) values of - 15.7 to - 8.5, which are close to those of Cathaysia crust-derived melts. Geochemical and Sr-Nd-Pb-Hf isotopic compositions suggest that they may be derived from Late Jurassic thickened juvenile lower crust. These lower crustal magma sources may not only contain pre-Proterozoic basement rocks, but also involve Triassic and Middle-Late Jurassic arc magmas within the lower crust, which were likely derived from an enriched mantle source associated with paleo-Pacific Plate subduction from the Middle to Late Jurassic. The Gutian ore-related granodiorites represent a new example for significant contributions of ancient subduction melts and enriched mantle-derived sources for porphyry-type magmatism and Cu-Mo mineralization, which occurred in response to an arc regime during the Middle to Late Jurassic in South China. Supplemental Table S2. Hf isotopic compositions of zircons from the studied rocks from the Gutian porphyry deposit in South China. Supplemental Table S3. Statistics for zircon U-Pb ages and Hf isotope compositions from Gutian granodiorites in South China Supplemental Table S4. Major element (wt

  8. Fossil shrews from Honduras and their significance for late glacial evolution in body size (Mammalia: Soricidae: Cryptotis)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Woodman, N.; Croft, D.A.

    2005-01-01

    failure to obtain reliable radiometric dates on remains restrict our opportunities to place the site in a firm temporal context. However, the morphometrical differences we document for fossil C. orophila and C. goodwini show them to be distinct from modern populations of these shrews. Some other species of fossil mammals from McGrew Cave exhibit distinct size changes of the magnitudes experienced by many northern North American and some Mexican mammals during the transition from late glacial to Holocene environmental conditions, and it is likely that at least some of the remains from the cave are late Pleistocene in age. One curious factor is that, whereas most mainland mammals that exhibit large-scale size shifts during the late glacial/postglacial transition experienced dwarfing, C. goodwini increased in size. The lack of clinal variation in modern C. goodwini supports the hypothesis that size evolution can result from local selection rather than from cline translocation. Models of size change in mammals indicate that increased size, such as that observed for C. goodwini, are a likely consequence of increased availability of resources and, thereby, a relaxation of selection during critical times of the year.

  9. Three new Jurassic euharamiyidan species reinforce early divergence of mammals.

    PubMed

    Bi, Shundong; Wang, Yuanqing; Guan, Jian; Sheng, Xia; Meng, Jin

    2014-10-30

    The phylogeny of Allotheria, including Multituberculata and Haramiyida, remains unsolved and has generated contentious views on the origin and earliest evolution of mammals. Here we report three new species of a new clade, Euharamiyida, based on six well-preserved fossils from the Jurassic period of China. These fossils reveal many craniodental and postcranial features of euharamiyidans and clarify several ambiguous structures that are currently the topic of debate. Our phylogenetic analyses recognize Euharamiyida as the sister group of Multituberculata, and place Allotheria within the Mammalia. The phylogeny suggests that allotherian mammals evolved from a Late Triassic (approximately 208 million years ago) Haramiyavia-like ancestor and diversified into euharamiyidans and multituberculates with a cosmopolitan distribution, implying homologous acquisition of many craniodental and postcranial features in the two groups. Our findings also favour a Late Triassic origin of mammals in Laurasia and two independent detachment events of the middle ear bones during mammalian evolution.

  10. Pentapetalum trifasciculandricus gen. et sp. nov., a thealean fossil flower from the Raritan Formation, New Jersey, USA (Turonian, Late Cretaceous).

    PubMed

    Martínez-Millán, Marcela; Crepet, William L; Nixon, Kevin C

    2009-05-01

    The study of fossil flowers in the last 25 years has greatly increased our understanding of angiosperm diversification. Following that tradition, we here describe a new fossil taxon from the Late Cretaceous of New Jersey, Pentapetalum trifasciculandricus Martínez-Millán, Crepet et Nixon gen. et sp. nov. It includes actinomorphic pentamerous flowers with quincuncial calyx, imbricate corolla, numerous stamens of markedly different heights, and a superior tricarpellate ovary, which are morphologically consistent with the flowers of the Theaceae s.l. and of members of the order Theales sensu Cronquist. Cladistic analyses including 45 extant taxa plus the fossil, 61 morphological characters, and different combinations of the molecular markers rbcL, matK, trnL-trnF, matR, and ITS support its inclusion in the order Ericales sensu APG. Comparison with extant taxa using traditional methods of identification suggests a relation with the Theaceae s.s. (Stewartia), but the phylogenetic analyses do not support this view. Instead, the phylogenetic analysis suggests some relation to the Ternstroemiaceae/Pentaphylacaceae (Theaceae s.l.), exemplifying the importance of evaluating identifications in a phylogenetic context. The description of Pentapetalum further adds to the ample diversity of Ericales in the Late Cretaceous.

  11. Stratigraphy of the Jurassic system in northern Egypt

    SciTech Connect

    Keeley, M.L.; Shaw, D.; Forbes, G.A.

    1988-08-01

    A regional synthesis is presented of the stratigraphy of Jurassic strata in Egypt north of 30/degree/N, based on the study of about 80 wells and outcrops from northeastern Egypt. Almost all fossil groups have been investigated for biostratigraphic control. Published work on ammonite faunas from Gebel el Maghara (north Sinai) is integrated with extensive original work on palynofloras (and, to a lesser extent, ostracod/foraminiferal faunas) recovered from marine rocks in the subsurface. The recovery of rich dinocyst assemblages enables the recognition of a ten-fold zonation scheme, largely within the Middle-Late Jurassic sedimentary package. The upper limit of this package is marked by the Cimmerian erosional event; strata younger than Oxfordian are rarely preserved. Only east of 30/degree/E is significant sedimentation known to have occurred immediately prior to the major early Bajocian transgressive event. Thereafter mean sea level rose steadily. The Lower Triassic-Lower Jurassic sedimentary package is poorly understood, largely the result of scanty and ambiguous stratigraphic evidence. However, regional correlations suggest that only very thin earliest Jurassic (Hettangian ) clastic deposition succeeded a sequence of Upper Triassic carbonates and evaporites (Wadi en Natrun Formation) in the north. Arising from these studies is a standard lithostratigraphical scheme. The upper sedimentary package, the Gebel el Maghara Group, comprises three formations (Masajid, Khatatba, and Inmar) and seven members; new units are defined and old units redefined.

  12. Atmospheric CO2 from the late Oligocene to early Miocene reconstructed from photosynthesis data and leaf characteristics of fossil plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grein, Michaela; Oehm, Christoph; Konrad, Wilfried; Utescher, Torsten; Kunzmann, Lutz; Roth-Nebelsick, Anita

    2013-04-01

    In the Cenozoic era, global climate changed from greenhouse to icehouse conditions. During the Oligocene, the comparatively cool phase in the earlier part of the late Oligocene is followed by the Late Oligocene Warming and a major glaciation event at the Oligocene-Miocene transition (Mi-1). Various studies indicate that these climate events were coupled to changes in atmospheric CO2 levels. In this study, atmospheric CO2 from the late Oligocene to the early Miocene was reconstructed by using photosynthesis data and fossil leaf characteristics. We used plant material from various sites located in Germany and Austria comprising fossil leaves of four angiosperm plant species: Platanus neptuni (Platanaceae), Quercus rhenana, Q. praerhenana and Eotrigonobalanus furcinervis (all Fagaceae). A mechanistic-theoretical approach based on stomatal parameters, photosynthesis data and gas exchange parameters was applied to model palaeoatmospheric CO2 levels. Detailed climate data of the considered sites were reconstructed as well since the mechanistic-theoretical approach requires climate data as input parameters for calculating both assimilation rate and transpiration rate. Our results indicate a steady CO2 level of about 400 ppm for all sites and therefore suggest a decoupling of CO2 and cooling/warming events for the considered time slices.

  13. Mississippian fossils from southern appalachian metamorphic rocks and their implications for late paleozoic tectonic evolution.

    PubMed

    Gastaldo, R A; Guthrie, G M; Steltenpohl, M G; Gastaldo, R A; Steltenpohl, M G

    1993-10-29

    Fossils of Periastron reticulatum Unger emended. Beck recovered from the Erin Slate of the Talladega slate belt of Alabama establish that these rocks have a Mississippian (Kinderhookian-Tournaisian) age. The Talladega slate belt, the southwestern extension of the western Blue Ridge belt, was interpreted to have been affected by regional dynamothermal metamorphism and coeval deformation as a result of the Acadian orogeny. This fossil find indicates that metamorphism and deformation of the Talladega belt occurred after the Early Carboniferous (Alleghanian), requiring a reevaluation of tectonic interpretations of the southernmost Appalachians.

  14. Recent synchronous radiation of a living fossil.

    PubMed

    Nagalingum, N S; Marshall, C R; Quental, T B; Rai, H S; Little, D P; Mathews, S

    2011-11-11

    Modern survivors of previously more diverse lineages are regarded as living fossils, particularly when characterized by morphological stasis. Cycads are often cited as a classic example, reaching their greatest diversity during the Jurassic-Cretaceous (199.6 to 65.5 million years ago) then dwindling to their present diversity of ~300 species as flowering plants rose to dominance. Using fossil-calibrated molecular phylogenies, we show that cycads underwent a near synchronous global rediversification beginning in the late Miocene, followed by a slowdown toward the Recent. Although the cycad lineage is ancient, our timetrees indicate that living cycad species are not much older than ~12 million years. These data reject the hypothesized role of dinosaurs in generating extant diversity and the designation of today's cycad species as living fossils.

  15. Visualizing fossilization using laser ablation-inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry maps of trace elements in Late Cretaceous bones

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Koenig, A.E.; Rogers, R.R.; Trueman, C.N.

    2009-01-01

    Elemental maps generated by laser ablation-inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS) provide a previously unavailable high-resolution visualization of the complex physicochemical conditions operating within individual bones during the early stages of diagenesis and fossilization. A selection of LA-ICP-MS maps of bones collected from the Late Cretaceous of Montana (United States) and Madagascar graphically illustrate diverse paths to recrystallization, and reveal unique insights into geochemical aspects of taphonomic history. Some bones show distinct gradients in concentrations of rare earth elements and uranium, with highest concentrations at external bone margins. Others exhibit more intricate patterns of trace element uptake related to bone histology and its control on the flow paths of pore waters. Patterns of element uptake as revealed by LA-ICP-MS maps can be used to guide sampling strategies, and call into question previous studies that hinge upon localized bulk samples of fossilized bone tissue. LA-ICP-MS maps also allow for comparison of recrystallization rates among fossil bones, and afford a novel approach to identifying bones or regions of bones potentially suitable for extracting intact biogeochemical signals. ?? 2009 Geological Society of America.

  16. New data on the late Neandertals: direct dating of the Belgian Spy fossils.

    PubMed

    Semal, Patrick; Rougier, Hélène; Crevecoeur, Isabelle; Jungels, Cécile; Flas, Damien; Hauzeur, Anne; Maureille, Bruno; Germonpré, Mietje; Bocherens, Hervé; Pirson, Stéphane; Cammaert, Laurence; De Clerck, Nora; Hambucken, Anne; Higham, Thomas; Toussaint, Michel; van der Plicht, Johannes

    2009-04-01

    In Eurasia, the period between 40,000 and 30,000 BP saw the replacement of Neandertals by anatomically modern humans (AMH) during and after the Middle to Upper Paleolithic transition. The human fossil record for this period is very poorly defined with no overlap between Neandertals and AMH on the basis of direct dates. Four new (14)C dates were obtained on the two adult Neandertals from Spy (Belgium). The results show that Neandertals survived to at least approximately 36,000 BP in Belgium and that the Spy fossils may be associated to the Lincombian-Ranisian-Jerzmanowician, a transitional techno-complex defined in northwest Europe and recognized in the Spy collections. The new data suggest that hypotheses other than Neandertal acculturation by AMH may be considered in this part of Europe.

  17. First record of fossil wood and phytolith assemblages of the Late Pleistocene in El Palmar National Park (Argentina)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zucol, A. F.; Brea, M.; Scopel, A.

    2005-10-01

    Two paleoxylologic assemblages and two phytolith assemblages were recovered from Late Pleistocene sediments of El Palmar Formation. These deposits are found in outcrops along the western margin of the Uruguay River. The spectra of taxa obtained in both sets by different methods is complementary. The fossil remains are characterized in terms of floristic composition and paleoclimate. Seven families are recognized: Podostemaceae, Myrtaceae, Anacardiaceae, Mimosoideae, Arecaceae, Poaceace, and Cyperaceae. Sponge siliceous spicules also have been found in these assemblages. The state of preservation of the phytoliths and their weathering degree is analyzed. These studies can be used as a potential paleoecological tool for alluvial sediments. The comparison of fossil assemblages with modern analogs clarifies the paleoecological requirements and composition of two paleocommunities, one dominated by woody forests and the other by palms. The climatic conditions inferred from the reconstructed vegetation and sedimentary deposits indicate a temperate-warm, humid climate. The results constitute the first evidence of the floral diversity of the vegetation in El Palmar National Park during the Late Pleistocene.

  18. Late Paleocene fossils from the Cerrejon Formation, Colombia, are the earliest record of Neotropical rainforest.

    PubMed

    Wing, Scott L; Herrera, Fabiany; Jaramillo, Carlos A; Gómez-Navarro, Carolina; Wilf, Peter; Labandeira, Conrad C

    2009-11-03

    Neotropical rainforests have a very poor fossil record, making hypotheses concerning their origins difficult to evaluate. Nevertheless, some of their most important characteristics can be preserved in the fossil record: high plant diversity, dominance by a distinctive combination of angiosperm families, a preponderance of plant species with large, smooth-margined leaves, and evidence for a high diversity of herbivorous insects. Here, we report on an approximately 58-my-old flora from the Cerrejón Formation of Colombia (paleolatitude approximately 5 degrees N) that is the earliest megafossil record of Neotropical rainforest. The flora has abundant, diverse palms and legumes and similar family composition to extant Neotropical rainforest. Three-quarters of the leaf types are large and entire-margined, indicating rainfall >2,500 mm/year and mean annual temperature >25 degrees C. Despite modern family composition and tropical paleoclimate, the diversity of fossil pollen and leaf samples is 60-80% that of comparable samples from extant and Quaternary Neotropical rainforest from similar climates. Insect feeding damage on Cerrejón fossil leaves, representing primary consumers, is abundant, but also of low diversity, and overwhelmingly made by generalist feeders rather than specialized herbivores. Cerrejón megafossils provide strong evidence that the same Neotropical rainforest families have characterized the biome since the Paleocene, maintaining their importance through climatic phases warmer and cooler than present. The low diversity of both plants and herbivorous insects in this Paleocene Neotropical rainforest may reflect an early stage in the diversification of the lineages that inhabit this biome, and/or a long recovery period from the terminal Cretaceous extinction.

  19. Glandulocalyx upatoiensis, a fossil flower of Ericales (Actinidiaceae/Clethraceae) from the Late Cretaceous (Santonian) of Georgia, USA

    PubMed Central

    Schönenberger, Jürg; von Balthazar, Maria; Takahashi, Masamichi; Xiao, Xianghui; Crane, Peter R.; Herendeen, Patrick S.

    2012-01-01

    Background and Aims Ericales are a major group of extant asterid angiosperms that are well represented in the Late Cretaceous fossil record, mainly by flowers, fruits and seeds. Exceptionally well preserved fossil flowers, here described as Glandulocalyx upatoiensis gen. & sp. nov., from the Santonian of Georgia, USA, yield new detailed evidence of floral structure in one of these early members of Ericales and provide a secure basis for comparison with extant taxa. Methods The floral structure of several fossil specimens was studied by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), light microscopy of microtome thin sections and synchrotron-radiation X-ray tomographic microscopy (SRXTM). For direct comparisons with flowers of extant Ericales, selected floral features of Actinidiaceae and Clethraceae were studied with SEM. Key Results Flowers of G. upatoiensis have five sepals with quincuncial aestivation, five free petals with quincuncial aestivation, 20–28 stamens arranged in a single series, extrorse anther orientation in the bud, ventral anther attachment and a tricarpellate, syncarpous ovary with three free styles and numerous small ovules on axile, protruding-diffuse and pendant placentae. The calyx is characterized by a conspicuous indumentum of large, densely arranged, multicellular and possibly glandular trichomes. Conclusions Comparison with extant taxa provides clear evidence for a relationship with core Ericales comprised of the extant families Actinidiaceae, Roridulaceae, Sarraceniaceae, Clethraceae, Cyrillaceae and Ericaceae. Within this group, the most marked similarities are with extant Actinidiaceae and, to a lesser degree, with Clethraceae. More detailed analyses of the relationships of Glandulocalyx and other Ericales from the Late Cretaceous will require an improved understanding of the morphological features that diagnose particular extant groups defined on the basis of molecular data. PMID:22442339

  20. First discovery of colobine fossils from the Late Miocene/Early Pliocene in central Myanmar.

    PubMed

    Takai, Masanaru; Thaung-Htike; Zin-Maung-Maung-Thein; Soe, Aung Naing; Maung, Maung; Tsubamoto, Takehisa; Egi, Naoko; Nishimura, Takeshi D; Nishioka, Yuichiro

    2015-07-01

    Here we report two kinds of colobine fossils discovered from the latest Miocene/Early Pliocene Irrawaddy sediments of the Chaingzauk area, central Myanmar. A left mandibular corpus fragment preserving M1-3 is named as a new genus and species, Myanmarcolobus yawensis. Isolated upper (M(1)?) and lower (M2) molars are tentatively identified as Colobinae gen. et sp. indet. Although both forms are medium-sized colobines, they are quite different from each other in M2 morphology. The isolated teeth of the latter show typical colobine-type features, so it is difficult to identify their taxonomic position, whereas lower molars of Myanmarcolobus have unique features, such as a trapezoid-shaped long median lingual notch, a deeply concave median buccal cleft, a strongly developed mesiobuccal notch, and rather obliquely running transverse lophids. Compared with fossil and living Eurasian colobine genera, Myanmarcolobus is most similar in lower molar morphology to the Pliocene Dolichopithecus of Europe rather than to any Asian forms. In Dolichopithecus, however, the tooth size is much larger and the median lingual notch is mesiodistally much shorter than that of Myanmarcolobus. The discovery of Myanmarcolobus in central Myanmar is the oldest fossil record in Southeast Asia not only of colobine but also of cercopithecid monkeys and raises many questions regarding the evolutionary history of Asian colobine monkeys.

  1. A new fossil fern assignable to Gleicheniaceae from Late Cretaceous sediments of New Jersey.

    PubMed

    Gandolfo, M; Nixon, K; Crepet, W; Ratcliffe, G

    1997-04-01

    The recent discovery of well-preserved charcoalified rhizomes, petioles. pinnules, sori, and spores from the Upper Cretaceous of New Jersey provides the basis for the description of a new gleicheniaceous fern, Boodlepteris turoniana. The fossils were collected from unconsolidated sediments of Turonian age (~90 MYBP million years before present; Raritan/ Lower Magothy Formation, Potomac Group). These deposits are rich in angiosperms, but also have a limited representation of fern and gymnosperm remains. Fossil specimens from this locality are particularly remarkable in that minute detail, including anatomical features, are often preserved. Some Boodlepteris specimens have cell by cell preservation that reveals the nature and structure of the stele in rhizomes and petioles, and others show minute details of the sori borne on fertile pinnae. Although these specimens are not in organic connection, there are sufficient structural and anatomical details preserved to confidently suggest that they belong to the same taxon. Cladistic analysis of the fossils, both separately and as a reconstruction, support assignment of Boodlepteris to the extant family Gleicheniaceae.

  2. Fossil wood diversity gradient and Far-East Asia palaeoclimatology during the Late Triassic - Cretaceous interval

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oh, Changhwan; Legrand, Julien; Kim, Kyungsik; Philippe, Marc; SungPaik, In

    2011-02-01

    Mesozoic fossil floras are distributed over eastern Asia (China, Mongolia, Siberia, Korea and Japan) according to a regular latitudinal pattern. Two floras are usually distinguished, a northern type and a southern type, the distribution of which oscillated during the Mesozoic. In Japan, this regular pattern is disrupted by a sharp inflexion of the boundary between the two floras. Two competing hypotheses have been proposed to explain this disruption. One hypothesis advocates later tectonic motion clouding the original pattern, while the other hypothesis proposes that a warm oceanic current allowed the southern flora to grow much further north in coastal areas. We used fossil wood, a biotic component that has not previously been used, for a palaeobiogeographical study of the region. The observed fossil wood diversity at the generic level does not fit with the hypothesis of a warm oceanic current, unless this hypothesis is modified to include alternating warm northbound and cold southbound oceanic currents. Our results provide new evidence for the palaeoecology of the Mesozoic continental biota in Far-East Asia.

  3. Fossil proxies of near-shore sea surface temperatures and seasonality from the late Neogene Antarctic shelf.

    PubMed

    Clark, Nicola A; Williams, Mark; Hill, Daniel J; Quilty, Patrick G; Smellie, John L; Zalasiewicz, Jan; Leng, Melanie J; Ellis, Michael A

    2013-08-01

    We evaluate the available palaeontological and geochemical proxy data from bivalves, bryozoans, silicoflagellates, diatoms and cetaceans for sea surface temperature (SST) regimes around the nearshore Antarctic coast during the late Neogene. These fossils can be found in a number of shallow marine sedimentary settings from three regions of the Antarctic continent, the northern Antarctic Peninsula, the Prydz Bay region and the western Ross Sea. Many of the proxies suggest maximum spring-summer SSTs that are warmer than present by up to 5 °C, which would result in reduced seasonal sea ice. The evidence suggests that the summers on the Antarctic shelf during the late Neogene experienced most of the warming, while winter SSTs were little changed from present. Feedbacks from changes in summer sea ice cover may have driven much of the late Neogene ocean warming seen in stratigraphic records. Synthesized late Neogene and earliest Quaternary Antarctic shelf proxy data are compared to the multi-model SST estimates of the Pliocene Model Intercomparison Project (PlioMIP) Experiment 2. Despite the fragmentary geographical and temporal context for the SST data, comparisons between the SST warming in each of the three regions represented in the marine palaeontological record of the Antarctic shelf and the PlioMIP climate simulations show a good concordance.

  4. Stable iron isotopes and microbial mediation in red pigmentation of the Rosso Ammonitico (mid-late Jurassic, Verona area, Italy).

    PubMed

    Préat, Alain R; de Jong, Jeroen T M; Mamet, Bernard L; Mattielli, Nadine

    2008-08-01

    The iron (Fe) isotopic composition of 17 Jurassic limestones from the Rosso Ammonitico of Verona (Italy) have been analyzed by Multiple-Collector Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (MC-ICP-MS). Such analysis allowed for the recognition of a clear iron isotopic fractionation (mean -0.8 per thousand, ranging between -1.52 to -0.06 per thousand) on a millimeter-centimeter scale between the red and grey facies of the studied formation. After gentle acid leaching, measurements of the Fe isotopic compositions gave delta(56)Fe values that were systematically lower in the red facies residues (median: -0.84 per thousand, range: -1.46 to +0.26 per thousand) compared to the grey facies residues (median: -0.08 per thousand, range: -0.34 to +0.23 per thousand). In addition, the red facies residues were characterized by a lighter delta(56)Fe signal relative to their corresponding leachates. These Fe isotopic fractionations could be a sensitive fingerprint of a biotic process; systematic isotopic differences between the red and grey facies residues, which consist of hematite and X-ray amorphous iron hydroxides, respectively, are hypothesized to have resulted from the oxidizing activity of iron bacteria and fungi in the red facies. The grey Fe isotopic data match the Fe isotopic signature of the terrestrial baseline established for igneous rocks and low-C(org) clastic sedimentary rocks. The Fe isotopic compositions of the grey laminations are consistent with the influx of detrital iron minerals and lack of microbial redox processes at the water-interface during deposition. Total Fe concentration measurements were performed by Inductively Coupled Plasma Atomic Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-AES) (confirmed by concentration estimations obtained by MC-ICP-MS analyses of microdrilled samples) on five samples, and resultant values range between 0.30% (mean) in the grey facies and 1.31% (mean) in the red facies. No correlation was observed between bulk Fe content and pigmentation

  5. Non-marine carbonate facies, facies models and palaeogeographies of the Purbeck Formation (Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous) of Dorset (Southern England).

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gallois, Arnaud; Bosence, Dan; Burgess, Peter

    2015-04-01

    Non-marine carbonates are relatively poorly understood compared with their more abundant marine counterparts. Sedimentary facies and basin architecture are controlled by a range of environmental parameters such as climate, hydrology and tectonic setting but facies models are few and limited in their predictive value. Following the discovery of extensive Early Cretaceous, non-marine carbonate hydrocarbon reservoirs in the South Atlantic, the interest of understanding such complex deposits has increased during recent years. This study is developing a new depositional model for non-marine carbonates in a semi-arid climate setting in an extensional basin; the Purbeck Formation (Upper Jurassic - Lower Cretaceous) in Dorset (Southern England). Outcrop study coupled with subsurface data analysis and petrographic study (sedimentology and early diagenesis) aims to constrain and improve published models of depositional settings. Facies models for brackish water and hypersaline water conditions of these lacustrine to palustrine carbonates deposited in the syn-rift phase of the Wessex Basin will be presented. Particular attention focusses on the factors that control the accumulation of in-situ microbialite mounds that occur within bedded inter-mound packstones-grainstones in the lower Purbeck. The microbialite mounds are located in three units (locally known as the Skull Cap, the Hard Cap and the Soft Cap) separated by three fossil soils (locally known as the Basal, the Lower and the Great Dirt Beds) respectively within three shallowing upward lacustrine sequences. These complex microbialite mounds (up to 4m high), are composed of tabular small-scale mounds (flat and long, up to 50cm high) divided into four subfacies. Many of these small-scale mounds developed around trees and branches which are preserved as moulds (or silicified wood) which are surrounded by a burrowed mudstone-wackestone collar. Subsequently a thrombolite framework developed on the upper part only within

  6. First report of Plesiochelys etalloni and Tropidemys langii from the Late Jurassic of the UK and the palaeobiogeography of plesiochelyid turtles

    PubMed Central

    Chapman, Sandra D.

    2016-01-01

    Plesiochelyidae is a clade of relatively large coastal marine turtles that inhabited the shallow epicontinental seas that covered western Europe during the Late Jurassic. Although the group has been reported from many deposits, the material is rarely identified at the species level. Here, we describe historical plesiochelyid material from the Kimmeridge Clay Formation of England and compare it with contemporaneous localities from the continent. An isolated basicranium is referred to the plesiochelyid Plesiochelys etalloni based notably on the presence of a fully ossified pila prootica. This specimen represents the largest individual known so far for this species and is characterized by remarkably robust features. It is, however, uncertain whether this represents an ontogenetic trend towards robustness in this species, some kind of specific variation (temporal, geographical or sexual), or an abnormal condition of this particular specimen. Four other specimens from the Kimmeridge Clay are referred to the plesiochelyid Tropidemys langii. This contradicts a recent study that failed to identify this species in this formation. This is the first time, to the best of our knowledge, that the presence of Plesiochelys etalloni and Tropidemys langii is confirmed outside the Swiss and French Jura Mountains. Our results indicate that some plesiochelyids had a wide palaeobiogeographic distribution during the Kimmeridgian. PMID:26909172

  7. Climate-vegetation modelling and fossil plant data suggest low atmospheric CO2 in the late Miocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forrest, M.; Eronen, J. T.; Utescher, T.; Knorr, G.; Stepanek, C.; Lohmann, G.; Hickler, T.

    2015-12-01

    There is an increasing need to understand the pre-Quaternary warm climates, how climate-vegetation interactions functioned in the past, and how we can use this information to understand the present. Here we report vegetation modelling results for the Late Miocene (11-7 Ma) to study the mechanisms of vegetation dynamics and the role of different forcing factors that influence the spatial patterns of vegetation coverage. One of the key uncertainties is the atmospheric concentration of CO2 during past climates. Estimates for the last 20 million years range from 280 to 500 ppm. We simulated Late Miocene vegetation using two plausible CO2 concentrations, 280 ppm CO2 and 450 ppm CO2, with a dynamic global vegetation model (LPJ-GUESS) driven by climate input from a coupled AOGCM (Atmosphere-Ocean General Circulation Model). The simulated vegetation was compared to existing plant fossil data for the whole Northern Hemisphere. For the comparison we developed a novel approach that uses information of the relative dominance of different plant functional types (PFTs) in the palaeobotanical data to provide a quantitative estimate of the agreement between the simulated and reconstructed vegetation. Based on this quantitative assessment we find that pre-industrial CO2 levels are largely consistent with the presence of seasonal temperate forests in Europe (suggested by fossil data) and open vegetation in North America (suggested by multiple lines of evidence). This suggests that during the Late Miocene the CO2 levels have been relatively low, or that other factors that are not included in the models maintained the seasonal temperate forests and open vegetation.

  8. Climatic fluctuations and seasonality during the Late Jurassic (Oxfordian-Early Kimmeridgian) inferred from δ18O of Paris Basin oyster shells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brigaud, Benjamin; Pucéat, Emmanuelle; Pellenard, Pierre; Vincent, Benoît; Joachimski, Michael M.

    2008-08-01

    Oxygen isotope data from biostratigraphically well-dated oyster shells from the Late Jurassic of the eastern Paris Basin are used to reconstruct the thermal evolution of western Tethyan surface waters during the Early Oxfordian-Early Kimmeridgian interval. Seventy eight oyster shells were carefully screened for potential diagenetic alteration using cathodoluminescence microscopy. Isotope analyses were performed on non-luminescent parts of shells (n = 264). Intra-shell δ18O variability was estimated by microsampling along a transect perpendicular to the growth lines of the largest oyster shell. The sinusoidal distribution of the δ18O values along this transect and the dependence of the amplitude of variations with bathymetry suggest that intra-shell variability reflects seasonal variations of temperature and/or salinity. Average amplitudes of about 5 °C in shallow water environments and of about 2-3 °C in deeper offshore environments are calculated. These amplitudes reflect minimum seasonal temperature variation. Our new data allow to constrain existing paleotemperature trends established from fish tooth and belemnite δ18O data and are in better agreement with paleontological data. More specifically, a warming trend of about 3 °C is reconstructed for oceanic surface waters during the Early to Middle Oxfordian transition, with maximum temperatures reaching 24 °C in the transversarium Zone (late Middle Oxfordian). From the transversarium Zone to the bimmamatum Zone, a cooling of about 7 °C is indicated, whereas from the bimmamatum Zone, temperatures increased again by about 7 °C to reach 24 °C in average during the cymodoce Zone (Early Kimmeridgian).

  9. Late Jurassic--Early Cretaceous cooling for Late Proterozoic through Early Devonian crystalline rocks from the Bronson Hill anticlinorium, MA--VT: Evidence from apatite fission track analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Roden, M.K. . Dept. of Earth and Environmental Science)

    1993-03-01

    Ten samples of crystalline rocks from the Bronson Hill anticlinorium in north central Massachusetts--south central Vermont yield Mesozoic apatite fission track cooling ages ranging from 98 [+-] 8 to 158 [+-] 24 Ma. Compositionally, the samples include a quartz-phyric rhyolite from the Ammonoosuc Volcanics, a pegmatite from the Kempfield Anticline, a gabbro from the Prescott Intrusive Complex, the Dry Hill and Fourmile Gneisses from the Pelham Dome, Swanzey Gneiss from the Keene Dome, Pauchaug Gneiss from the Warwick Dome, and the Monson Gneiss. Published U-Pb zircon analyses for the same samples yield ages of 613 [+-] 3 Ma for the Dry Hill Gneiss; 454--442 [+-] 3 Ma for the Swanzey, Pauchaug, Monson and Fourmile Gneisses; 453 [+-] 2 Ma for the Ammonoosuc Volcanics; and 407 [+-] 3/[minus]2 Ma for the Prescott Intrusive Complex gabbro (Tucker and Robinson, 1990). Apatite fission track ages are all reset and increase in apparent age eastward from the edge of the Deerfield-Hartford Basin, consistent with published apatite fission track ages from Jurassic sedimentary units within the Deerfield and Northern Hartford Basins. Mean track lengths ranged from 13.4 to 14.4 [mu]m with moderately large standard deviations. These track length distributions suggest relatively slow cooling through the track annealing range of 70--90 C and are consistent with track length distributions for sedimentary samples within the Deerfield and Northern Hartford Basins. The trend of increasing apatite fission track apparent age eastward from the basin margin suggests several interpretations: (1) differential uplift; (2) deeper burial in the basin and adjacent areas; (3) higher heat flow along the basin margin. Zircon fission track analyses are in progress to constrain maximum burial depths and should help differentiate between these models.

  10. Low palaeoelevation of the northern Lhasa terrane during late Eocene: Fossil foraminifera and stable isotope evidence from the Gerze Basin

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Yi; Zhang, Kexin; Garzione, Carmala N.; Xu, Yadong; Song, Bowen; Ji, Junliang

    2016-01-01

    The Lhasa terrane is a key region for understanding the paleoelevation of the southern Tibetan Plateau after India-Asia collision. The Gerze Basin, located in the northern part of the Lhasa terrane, is a shortening-related basin. We discovered Lagena laevis (Bandy) fossils in upper Eocene strata of the Gerze Basin. This type of foraminifera is associated with lagoon and estuarine environments, indicating that the northern part of the Lhasa terrane was near sea level during the late Eocene. We speculate that these foraminifera were transported inland by storm surges to low elevation freshwater lakes during times of marine transgressions. This inference is consistent with the relatively positive δ18O values in carbonate from the same deposits that indicate low palaeoelevations close to sea level. Considering the palaeoelevation results from the nearby Oligocene basins at a similar latitude and the volcanic history of the Lhasa terrane, we infer that large-magnitude surface uplift of the northern Lhasa terrane occurred between late Eocene and late Oligocene time. PMID:27272610

  11. Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous transpression, Pine Nut and Luning-Fencemaker fault system, west-central Nevada

    SciTech Connect

    Oldow, J.S. . Dept. of Geology and Geophysics)

    1993-04-01

    Recent studies of the Mesozoic tectonic evolution of the western U.S. Cordillera have called for substantial transcurrent displacement between the Sierra Nevada and the western Great Basin. The location, timing, and sense of shear of the postulated transcurrent fault system(s) are controversial, and to a larger degree the controversy has centered on the Pine Nut fault (PNF) of western Nevada. The northwest-trending Pine Nut fault juxtaposes two coeval assemblages of the Mesozoic marine province of the northwestern Great Basin that have distinctly different structural histories. On the east, Mesozoic rocks are deformed in the late Mesozoic Luning-Fencemaker fold and thrust belt (LFT). To the west, coeval rocks are not involved in structures of the LFT but rather share a structural history with the eastern Sierra Nevada. A segment of the PNF is expressed as a brittle shear zone, up to 3 km wide, mapped discontinuously for over 50 km in the eastern Wassuk Range in west-central Nevada. Cataclasites of the brittle fault zone are superposed on ductility deformed lower Mesozoic layered and intrusive rocks with structures indicating top to the east shear. The ductile deformation, which predated post-kinematic plutons dated by U-Pb as 169 Ma, was accompanied by metamorphism ranging from lower greenschist to amphibolite-facies conditions. The PNF and LFT formed during sinistral transpression and represent components of oblique plate-convergence along the late Mesozoic Sierran are system.

  12. The Pipe Creek Sinkhole biota, a diverse late tertiary continental fossil assemblage from Grant County, Indiana

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Farlow, J.O.; Sunderman, J.A.; Havens, J.J.; Swinehart, A.L.; Holman, J.A.; Richards, R.L.; Miller, N.G.; Martin, R.A.; Hunt, R.M.; Storrs, G.W.; Curry, B. Brandon; Fluegeman, R.H.; Dawson, M.; Flint, M.E.T.

    2001-01-01

    Quarrying in east-central Indiana has uncovered richly fossiliferous unconsolidated sediment buried beneath Pleistocene glacial till. The fossiliferous layer is part of a sedimentary deposit that accumulated in a sinkhole developed in the limestone flank beds of a Paleozoic reef. Plant and animal (mostly vertebrate) remains are abundant in the fossil assemblage. Plants are represented by a diversity of terrestrial and wetland forms, all of extant species. The vertebrate assemblage (here designated the Pipe Creek Sinkhole local fauna) is dominated by frogs and pond turtles, but fishes, birds; snakes and small and large mammals are also present; both extinct and extant taxa are represented. The mammalian assemblage indicates an early Pliocene age (latest Hemphillian or earliest Blancan North American Land Mammal Age). This is the first Tertiary continental biota discovered in the interior of the eastern half of North America.

  13. Late Holocene vegetation and historic grazing impacts at Capital Reef National Park reconstructed using fossil packrat middens

    SciTech Connect

    Cole, K.L.

    1995-06-01

    Late Holocene vegetation change from a high desert site in southern Utah was reconstructed using fossil plant macrofossils and pollen from packrat middens. Presettlement middens consistently contained abundant macrofossils of plant species palatable to livestock that are now absent or reduced such as: Ceratoides lanata, Stipa hymenoides, Pinus edulis, and Artemisia spp.. In contrast, species typical of overgrazed range, such as: Chrysothamnus visidiflorus, Sarcobatus vermiculatus, and Gutterezia sarothrae, are now more abundant than prior to the historic introduction of grazing animals. Similar changes are evident in the fossil pollen from the packrat middens. Pine and sagebrush pollen is now far lower than prior to settlement, while Salsola sp. is first recorded following settlement. Ordination of the plant records using Detrended Correspondence Analysis demonstrates that the modem assemblages are substantially different from the presettlement assemblages and that the rates of vegetation change accompanying settlement are far greater than any recorded during the previous 5000 years. These results suggest that the plant communities and rates of vegetation change observed during this century are unlike previous natural communities and rates of vegetation change.

  14. Fossil insect evidence for late Quaternary climatic change in the Big Bend region, Chihuahuan Desert, Texas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elias, Scott A.; Van Devender, Thomas R.

    1990-09-01

    A series of 50 packrat midden assemblages from the Big Bend region of the Chihuahuan Desert, ranging in age from >36,000 yr B.P. to recent, yielded abundant, diverse arthropod faunas. The mesic nature of regional Wisconsin age climates is substantiated by the fauna from 30,000-12,000 yr B.P., especially during the middle Wisconsin (30,000-20,000 yr B.P.). Late Wisconsin faunas contained grassland species which are confined today to cooler, moister regions. Following 12,000 yr B.P., most of these temperate species were replaced either by desert species or by more cosmopolitan taxa, marking the climatic shift from late Wisconsin to postglacial time. Insects indicative of more severe aridity are first recorded at about 6000 yr B.P., but some temperate species persisted until about 2500 yr B.P. After this, only desert dwellers are recorded.

  15. An Upper Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous carbonate platform from the Vâlcan Mountains (Southern Carpathians, Romania): paleoenvironmental interpretation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michetiuc, Mihai; Catincuţ, Camelia; Bucur, Ioan I.

    2012-02-01

    The results of a biostratigraphic and sedimentological study of the Upper Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous limestones cropping out in the southern sector of the Vâlcan Mountains in Romania are presented, including the definition of microfacies types, fossil assemblages and environmental interpretation. Six microfacies types (MFT 1-MFT 6) have been identified, each of them pointing to a specific depositional environment. The deposits are characteristic of a shallow carbonate platform. They contain normal marine or restricted marine facies deposited in low or high energy environments from the inner, middle and outer platform. The age attribution of these deposits (Late Jurassic to Berriasian-Valanginian-?Hauterivian, and Barremian) is based on foraminiferal and calcareous algae associations. The micropaleontological assemblage is exceptionally rich in the Vâlcan Mountains and brings new arguments for dating the Upper Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous limestones in this area.

  16. From Back-Arc Drifting to Arc Accretion: the Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous Evolution of the Guerrero Terrane in Central Mexico (Sierra de Guanajuato)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martini, M.; Solari, L.; Centeno-García, E.; Mori, L.; Camprubi, A.

    2011-12-01

    Three paleogeographic scenarios have been proposed for the Mesozoic volcano-sedimentary successions that compose the Guerrero terrane, western Mexico. In the "type 1" scenario the Guerrero terrane is an exotic Pacific arc accreted to nuclear Mexico by the consumption of a pre-Cretaceous oceanic basin, named Arperos Basin. The "type 2" scenario considers the Guerrero terrane as a fringing multi-arc system, accreted by the closure of relatively small pre-Cretaceous oceanic basins at multiple subduction zones with varying polarities. Alternatively, in the "type 3" scenario the Guerrero terrane is interpreted as a North American west-facing para-autochthonous arc, which drifted into the paleo-Pacific domain by the opening of the Cretaceous back-arc oceanic Arperos Basin, and subsequently accreted back to the Mexican mainland. In order to test these reconstructions and understand the dynamics of the arc accretion, we present here a combined study that includes sandstone provenance, U-Pb geochronology, and structural data from the Arperos Basin in the Sierra de Guanajuato, central Mexico. Our data document that the Arperos Basin developed in a back-arc setting, and evolved from continental to oceanic conditions from the Late Jurassic to the Early Cretaceous. Sandstone provenance analysis shows an asymmetric distribution of the infill sources for the Arperos Basin: continent-recycled sedimentary rocks were deposited along its north-eastern side, whereas magmatic arc-recycled clastic rocks developed at its south-western side. Such an asymmetric distribution closely fits with sedimentological models proposed for present-day continent-influenced back-arc basins. Based on these evidences, we favor a "type 3" scenario for the Guerrero terrane, which is then considered to represent a detached slice of the Mexican leading-edge that drifted in the paleo-Pacific domain during Late Jurassic-lower Early Cretaceous back-arc extension, and subsequently accreted back to the Mexican

  17. Paleomagnetism of Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous red beds from the Cardamom Mountains, southwestern Cambodia: Tectonic deformation of the Indochina Peninsula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsuchiyama, Yukiho; Zaman, Haider; Sotham, Sieng; Samuth, Yos; Sato, Eiichi; Ahn, Hyeon-Seon; Uno, Koji; Tsumura, Kosuke; Miki, Masako; Otofuji, Yo-ichiro

    2016-01-01

    Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous red beds of the Phuquoc Formation were sampled at 33 sites from the Sihanoukville and Koah Kong areas of the Phuquoc-Kampot Som Basin, southwestern Cambodia. Two high-temperature remanent components with unblocking temperature ranging 650°-670 °C and 670-690 °C were identified. The magnetization direction for the former component (D = 5.2 °, I = 18.5 ° with α95 = 3.1 ° in situ) reveals a negative fold test that indicates a post-folding secondary nature. However, the latter component, carried by specular hematite, is recognized as a primary remanent magnetization. A tilt-corrected mean direction of D = 43.4 °, I = 31.9 ° (α95 = 3.6 °) was calculated for the primary component at 11 sites, corresponding to a paleopole of 47.7°N, 178.9°E (A95 = 3.6 °). When compared with the 130 Ma East Asian pole, a southward displacement of 6.0 ° ± 3.5 ° and a clockwise rotation of 33.1 ° ± 4.0 ° of the Phuquoc-Kampot Som Basin (as a part of the Indochina Block) with respect to East Asia were estimated. This estimate of the clockwise rotation is ∼15° larger than that of the Khorat Basin, which we attribute to dextral motion along the Wang Chao Fault since the mid-Oligocene. The comparison of the herein estimated clockwise rotation with the counter-clockwise rotation reported from the Da Lat area in Vietnam suggests the occurrence of a differential tectonic rotation in the southern tip of the Indochina Block. During the southward displacement of the Indochina Block, the non-rigid lithosphere under its southern tip moved heterogeneously, while the rigid lithosphere under the Khorat Basin moved homogeneously.

  18. Portlandemys gracilis n. sp., a New Coastal Marine Turtle from the Late Jurassic of Porrentruy (Switzerland) and a Reconsideration of Plesiochelyid Cranial Anatomy

    PubMed Central

    Anquetin, Jérémy; Püntener, Christian; Billon-Bruyat, Jean-Paul

    2015-01-01

    Background Several groups of stem cryptodires became adapted to coastal marine environments as early as the Late Jurassic, 40 million years before the Pan-Chelonioidea. The Plesiochelyidae are a major component of this first radiation of crown-group turtles into marine habitats. They are abundant in many European localities, but their systematics is still greatly confused. Only three species are represented by cranial material: Plesiochelys etalloni, Plesiochelys planiceps, and Portlandemys mcdowelli. Methodology/Principal Findings In the present study, we describe a cranium and a mandible from the Kimmeridgian of Porrentruy (Switzerland), which we refer to a new species, Portlandemys gracilis n. sp. This new taxon differs from Portlandemys mcdowelli in several aspects of the cranium and mandible, notably in being generally more gracile, but the two species share a narrow skull, a more acute angle between the labial ridges on the mandible, and a unique configuration of the anterodorsal part of the basicranium. The cranial anatomy of plesiochelyid turtles is discussed in details based primarily on these new specimens and new cranial material of Plesiochelys etalloni from Solothurn, Switzerland. Conclusions/Significance Several characters (e.g., the contribution of the parietal to the foramen nervi trigemini, the configuration of the dorsum sellae and sella turcica, the presence of an infolding ridge on the posterior surface of the quadrate) appear as potential candidates to help elucidate plesiochelyid relationships. Some of these characters are included in a previously published phylogenetic dataset and help to stabilize the relationships of plesiochelyid turtles and closely related taxa. For the first time, our results suggest that plesiochelyids, 'Thalassemys' moseri, and Solnhofia parsonsi (representing the Eurysternidae) form a clade at the base of Eucryptodira. PMID:26106888

  19. Carbon cycle history through the Middle Jurassic of Hungary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Price, Gregory; Fozy, Istvan; Galacz, Andras

    2016-04-01

    A carbonate carbon isotope curve from the Aalenian-Bathonian interval is presented from the Obanya valley, of the Mecsek Mountains, Hungary. This interval is less well constrained and studied that other Jurassic time slices. The Obanya valley lies in the eastern part of the Mecsek Mountains, between Obanya and Kisujbanya and provides excellent exposures of a near continuous Aalenian to Lower Cretaceous sequence. It is not strongly affected by tectonics, as compared to other sections of eastern Mecsek of the same age. In parts, a rich fossil assemblage has been collected; the Bathonian ammonites are especially valuable as this locality. The pelagic Middle Jurassic is represented by thin-bedded limestones (the Obanya Limestone) and is overlain by Upper Jurassic siliceous limestones and radiolarites (the Fonyaszo Limestone). The new data indicates a series of positive anomalies within the late Aalenian and early-middle Bajocian. These data are comparable with carbonate carbon isotope recorded from other Tethyan margin sediments. Our integrated biostratigraphy and carbon isotope stratigraphy enables us to improve stratigraphic correlation and age determination of the examined strata.

  20. Palaeogeography and relative sea-level history forcing eco-sedimentary contexts in Late Jurassic epicontinental shelves (Prebetic Zone, Betic Cordillera): An ecostratigraphic approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olóriz, Federico; Reolid, Matías; Rodríguez-Tovar, Francisco J.

    2012-02-01

    The analysis of macroinvertebrate and foraminiferal assemblages from Upper Jurassic (Middle Oxfordian to Lower Kimmeridgian) epicontinental shelf deposits in the Prebetic (Betic Cordillera, southern Spain) reveals the influence of environmental changes. They are expressed as selected parameters in palaeogeographic and stratigraphic trends (litho- and microfacies, faunal composition, taphonomy), which are interpreted in the context of relative sea-level histories. Middle Oxfordian to early Kimmeridgian (Transversarium to Planula Chrones) rocks and faunal assemblages in comparatively distal sectors (distal shelf) show lower sedimentation rates (lumpy lithofacies), and higher proportions of ammonoids, planktic foraminifera, corrasion degree, microboring and encrustation. Landwards, towards the mid-shelf, eco-sedimentary conditions resulted in spongiolithic limestones and marl-limestone rhythmites with local development of microbial-sponge buildups. Greater distance from shore during relative sea-level highs accords with greater: (1) stratigraphic condensation; (2) abundance in ammonoids, planktic foraminifera and nubeculariids; and (3) degrees of corrasion, microboring and encrustation. These trends in faunal composition and taphonomy agree with backstepping phases, increasing ecospace and a longer exposition of shelly remains on the sea bottom. Decreasing distance from shore during relative sea-level lows relates to opposite trends, as evidenced by: (4) increasing terrigenous input and decreasing stratigraphic condensation; (5) impoverishment in ammonoids and planktic foraminifera; and (6) diminution of corrasion, microboring and encrustation. Phases of forestepping/progradation and aggradation, a reduction of ecospace for nekto-planktic organisms, and comparatively rapid burial of shell remains are interpreted to force the recorded trends. An ecostratigraphic approach is used here to correlate and characterise sea-level changes, applying high resolution stratigraphy

  1. Alternative models for Late Jurassic and Early Cretaceous paleogeography of the western Cordillera, California to SE Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Cowan, D.S. . Geological Sciences)

    1993-04-01

    The Franciscan-Great Valley-Sierran triad is indisputable evidence for late Mesozoic, west-facing subduction along the California sector of the N. American margin. In the northwestern sector (N of 48[degree]N), however, neither the configuration of plate boundaries, nor the paleogeographic disposition of the Insular and Intermontane superterranes, is confidently established. Models divide into two groups. One set, based entirely on geologic evidence such as the age and nature of deformational events, or putative stratigraphic links among terranes, places the two superterranes exclusively to the north of the Franciscan-Sierran system from 150 to 90 Ma. These hypotheses, which ignore or reject paleomagnetic data from mid-Cretaceous rocks, yield a paleogeography not too different from today's, but they are incompatible with the Franciscan and Great Valley rocks caught between the superterranes in the mid-Cretaceous San Juan-Cascade thrust system. An alternative model fully respecting paleomagnetic data from mid-Cretaceous rocks with paleohorizontal control restores most of the Intermontane superterrane [approximately]1,200 km south of its expected (i.e. present) latitudinal position with respect to North America, and the Insular superterrane [approximately]2,900 km south, at 95--105 Ma. The mid-Cretaceous thrust system along the eastern margin of the Insular superterrane records the collision of Wrangellia et al. with the southern continuation of the Franciscan subduction zone. The thrust system, a silver of hanging wall, and the Insular superterrane were all subsequently translated > 2,500 km northward by post-80, pre-60 Ma coast-parallel dextral slip, accommodated on the proto-Pasayten and proto-Yalakom faults, and along or near the Coast Range shear zone.

  2. First glimpse into Lower Jurassic deep-sea biodiversity: in situ diversification and resilience against extinction.

    PubMed

    Thuy, Ben; Kiel, Steffen; Dulai, Alfréd; Gale, Andy S; Kroh, Andreas; Lord, Alan R; Numberger-Thuy, Lea D; Stöhr, Sabine; Wisshak, Max

    2014-07-07

    Owing to the assumed lack of deep-sea macrofossils older than the Late Cretaceous, very little is known about the geological history of deep-sea communities, and most inference-based hypotheses argue for repeated recolonizations of the deep sea from shelf habitats following major palaeoceanographic perturbations. We present a fossil deep-sea assemblage of echinoderms, gastropods, brachiopods and ostracods, from the Early Jurassic of the Glasenbach Gorge, Austria, which includes the oldest known representatives of a number of extant deep-sea groups, and thus implies that in situ diversification, in contrast to immigration from shelf habitats, played a much greater role in shaping modern deep-sea biodiversity than previously thought. A comparison with coeval shelf assemblages reveals that, at least in some of the analysed groups, significantly more extant families/superfamilies have endured in the deep sea since the Early Jurassic than in the shelf seas, which suggests that deep-sea biota are more resilient against extinction than shallow-water ones. In addition, a number of extant deep-sea families/superfamilies found in the Glasenbach assemblage lack post-Jurassic shelf occurrences, implying that if there was a complete extinction of the deep-sea fauna followed by replacement from the shelf, it must have happened before the Late Jurassic.

  3. 2D Geochemical Characterisation of Late Carboniferous Concretions: Constraints for 3D Fossil Preservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Howell, C. P.; Montenari, M.

    2012-04-01

    Because of their potential to perfectly preserve fossils in three dimensions, concretions and nodules from various stratigraphic positions and different geological settings have been the subject of intense investigations in the past. The results of these studies aided to elucidate the fine- and ultrastructure of fossilised materials, and gave detailed insights into the anatomy of many plants and animals of the geological past. Nodules have been described as concretionary bodies which are formed by the precipitation of authigenic minerals. They are sometimes monomineralic and homogenous, but polymineralic nodules are characterised by concentric zones of different mineralogical compositions (such as chert, barite, phosphates or manganiferous ores) around a mostly biogenic core. Several factors have been recognised which are thought to play an important role for the formation of nodules. These include [1] the availability of nucleating materials, [2] presence of metals in the water column and sediment, [3] favourable tectonic and physiographic features, [4] favourable sediment-water interface, [5] low rate of sedimentation, [6] presence of nutrient rich bottom water mass and [7] an oxidizing/reducing environment. Up to now, no consistent generic model has been proposed to address the complex geochemical interactions between these factors in the course of nodule formation. With the aim, to describe the different geochemical reactions that lead to nodule generation and hence fossil preservation, a ferromanganese nodule was extracted from the Upper Carboniferous sequences at Broadhaven, Pembrokshire, UK. The geology of this area consists of cyclothems, which contain cyclic sequences of limestones, sandstones and shales. Within this sequence, the nodules are located in the shale beds. The extracted ferromanganese nodule was cut in half using a diamond rock saw and is 7.1 cm in height and 9.8 cm in width. For the analysis of major and trace elements a Niton XL3t X

  4. Late-Holocene fossil rodent middens from the Arica region of northernmost Chile

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Holmgren, C.A.; Rosello, E.; Latorre, C.; Betancourt, J.L.

    2008-01-01

    Identification of >40 taxa of plant macrofossils in 14 rodent (Abrocoma) middens collected from 2800 to 3590 m elevation at the latitude of Arica, Chile (18°S) provide snapshots of vegetation in the northernmost Atacama Desert over the past 3000 years. Midden floras show considerable stability throughout the late Holocene, which may be due in part to the broad elevational ranges of many perennial species and midden insensitivity to changes in plant community structure. The greatest variability is found in annuals in the Prepuna, a climatically sensitive zone. This variability, however might also arise from the brevity of midden depositional episodes. As the first midden record from the Arica-Parinacota Region (Chile's northernmost administrative region), this study demonstrates the potential for future midden research in this area.

  5. Late-Holocene fossil rodent middens from the Arica region of northernmost Chile

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Holmgren, C.A.; Rosello, E.; Latorre, C.; Betancourt, J.L.

    2008-01-01

    Identification of >40 taxa of plant macrofossils in 14 rodent (Abrocoma) middens collected from 2800 to 3590 m elevation at the latitude of Arica, Chile (18??S) provide snapshots of vegetation in the northernmost Atacama Desert over the past 3000 years. Midden floras show considerable stability throughout the late Holocene, which may be due in part to the broad elevational ranges of many perennial species and midden insensitivity to changes in plant community structure. The greatest variability is found in annuals in the Prepuna, a climatically sensitive zone. This variability, however might also arise from the brevity of midden depositional episodes. As the first midden record from the Arica-Parinacota Region (Chile's northernmost administrative region), this study demonstrates the potential for future midden research in this area. ?? 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Quantification of Aridity Changes During the Late Holocene From the Carbon Isotope Composition of Fossil Charcoal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Voltas, J.; Ferrio, P.; Espinar, C.

    2006-12-01

    Climate dynamics during the Holocene can be characterized by a variety of proxies that provide information at a different scale and accuracy. In seasonally dry climates, the carbon isotope composition of tree-rings has been related to variables such as rainfall or evaporative demand. Extensive tree-ring records, however, are not always available owing to factors such as human-induced deforestation or harsh conditions for most long-lived trees to thrive. An illustrative example concerns the Mediterranean region. In this work, we aim to show that the original climate signal of wood δ13C is preserved in fossil charcoal (recovered from archaeological sites), and thus can be used to quantify past changes in water availability. We present two case studies on climate reconstruction at the temporal and spatial dimensions from Eastern Spain. We first describe, for a restricted area, the evolution of aridity during the last 4000 years using charcoals ranging from the Bronze Age (ca. 2100 BCE) to the Modern Age (XVIII ca. CE) (1). Further, we characterize, for a larger region, the transition between Bronze and Iron Ages, the so called Cold Iron Age Epoch (ca. 700-500 BCE), using remains from a set of contemporary sites (2). Climatic inferences were obtained after calibration of quantitative models predicting rainfall from wood δ13C. For case (1), charcoals of Mediterranean trees (Aleppo pine, several oaks, mastic) were analysed for δ13C. We found similar trends for the time course of changes in this parameter regardless of the species. Estimated rainfall in the past was 25% to 40% higher than present, with phases of greater water availability (1500-900 BCE; 300 BCE-300 CE) alternating with drier periods (900-300 BCE; 900-1100 CE). For case (2), we combined data from Aleppo pine and Holm oak, which exhibit differential responses to changes in climate seasonality, to provide information on intra-annual rainfall dynamics. The divergence in δ13C between pines and oaks can be

  7. The Terrestrial Fossil Organic Matter Record of Global Carbon Cycling: A Late Paleozoic through Early Mesozoic Perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Montanez, I. P.

    2006-12-01

    The carbon isotope composition of terrestrial fossil organic matter (δ13Corg) has been widely used as a proxy of global carbon cycling and to reconstruct perturbations to the ocean-atmosphere carbon budget. The degree to which terrestrial δ13Corg records local to regional environmental conditions versus the evolution of the global carbon cycle has been highly debated. The high-resolution (104 to 106 m.y.) terrestrial δ13Corg record presented here defines a long-term trend through the latest Devonian to Late Triassic that reveals significant and systematic variations that track independently inferred changes in climate, paleo-atmospheric pCO2, and major restructuring in paleotropical flora. This newly derived record is based on 350 carbon isotope analyses of compressed and permineralized plants, cuticle, charcoal and coal (including vitrinite and fusinite) collected from paleo-wetland mudstones and claystones, claystone-filled abandoned fluvial channels, floodplain mudstones, and ephemeral lacustrine deposits at paleo-tropical to paleo-temperate latitudes. Morphologic and geochemical analysis of contemporaneous paleosols and fluvial-alluvial deposits allow for correlation of terrestrial δ13Corg values to reconstructed paleo-environmental conditions. Terrestrial δ13Corg values of contemporaneous fossil organic matter exhibit systematic inter- and intra-basinal variation of up to 2‰ associated with differences in paleo-precipitation and burial history, and geomorphic position within depositional basins and paleo-fluvial systems. Variation in δ13Corg by organic matter type is minimal to less than 1.5‰; specifically, charcoal δ13Corg values overlap to are slightly less negative than those of thermally less mature organic components analyzed. Overall, variation within contemporaneous populations is significantly less than defined by the long-term terrestrial δ13Corg record. Moreover, paleo-floral pi/pa ratios, an established proxy of water-use efficiency of

  8. Late Jurassic adakitic granodiorite in the Dong Co area, northern Tibet: Implications for subduction of the Bangong-Nujiang oceanic lithosphere and related accretion of the Southern Qiangtang terrane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fan, Jian-Jun; Li, Cai; Wu, Hao; Zhang, Tian-Yu; Wang, Ming; Chen, Jing-Wen; Xu, Jian-Xin

    2016-11-01

    In this paper we present new major and trace element chemical data, zircon U-Pb age data, and zircon Hf isotopic compositions for the Dong Co granodiorites (DGs) that were emplaced directly in the Dong Co ophiolites (DOs) in the middle segment of the Bangong-Nujiang suture zone (BNSZ), northern Tibet. We use these new data to discuss the genesis of the DGs and implications for the evolution of the region. The DGs have high contents of SiO2, Al2O3, Na2O, and Sr, high values of Mg#, low contents of Yb and Y, and markedly high Sr/Y ratios, indicating an adakitic affinity, and we show that they were derived from the partial melting of subducted oceanic crust. The DGs contain large numbers of inherited zircons that have similar shapes and peak ages to the detrital zircons in the accretionary wedge graywackes that surround the DGs, suggesting that many of these sediments were assimilated during the formation of the DGs. Five DG samples yield the youngest zircon U-Pb ages of 155-160 Ma, indicating that the DGs formed during the Late Jurassic. Based on the present results and regional geological data, we infer that the Bangong-Nujiang oceanic lithosphere was subducted northwards beneath the Southern Qiangtang terrane during the formation of a continental arc system during the Late Jurassic. The Bangong-Nujiang oceanic lithosphere retreated rapidly after its initial subduction, and the Southern Qiangtang terrane to the north of the Bangong-Nujiang Ocean acquired a massive amount of new oceanic material in the form of an accretionary wedge. This wedge, which included the DOs and the Mugagangri Group, became sufficiently large (both in size and width) for arc-type magmas (DGs) to develop within it during the Late Jurassic.

  9. Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous episodic development of the Bangong Meso-Tethyan subduction: Evidence from elemental and Sr-Nd isotopic geochemistry of arc magmatic rocks, Gaize region, central Tibet, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Yu-Xiu; Li, Zhi-Wu; Yang, Wen-Guang; Zhu, Li-Dong; Jin, Xin; Zhou, Xiao-Yao; Tao, Gang; Zhang, Kai-Jun

    2017-03-01

    The Bangong Meso-Tethys plays a critical role in the development of the Tethyan realm and the initial elevation of the Tibetan Plateau. However, its precise subduction polarity, and history still remain unclear. In this study, we synthesize a report for the Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous two-phase magmatic rocks in the Gaize region at the southern margin of the Qiangtang block located in central Tibet. These rocks formed during the Late Jurassic-earliest Cretaceous (161-142 Ma) and Early Cretaceous (128-106 Ma), peaking at 146 Ma and 118 Ma, respectively. The presence of inherited zircons indicates that an Archean component exists in sediments in the shallow Qiangtang crust, and has a complex tectonomagmatic history. Geochemical and Sr-Nd isotopic data show that the two-phase magmatic rocks exhibit characteristics of arc magmatism, which are rich in large-ion incompatible elements (LIIEs), but are strongly depleted in high field strength elements (HFSEs). The Late Jurassic-earliest Cretaceous magmatic rocks mixed and mingled among mantle-derived mafic magmas, subduction-related sediments, or crustally-derived felsic melts and fluids, formed by a northward and steep subduction of the Bangong Meso-Tethys ocean crust. The magmatic gap at 142-128 Ma marks a flat subduction of the Meso-Tethys. The Early Cretaceous magmatism experienced a magma MASH (melting, assimilation, storage, and homogenization) process among mantle-derived mafic magmas, or crustally-derived felsic melts and fluids, as a result of the Meso-Tethys oceanic slab roll-back, which triggered simultaneous back-arc rifting along the southern Qiangtang block margin.

  10. Behaviour of nuclides and U-series disequilibrium in clayey sediments: application to the Late Jurassic record from the eastern Paris basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Casanova, J.; Négrel, Ph.; Innocent, C.; Brulhet, J.

    2003-04-01

    We present a record of U-series disequilibrium covering the Callovo-Oxfordian-Thitonian times of the Late Jurassic carbonated platform from the eastern part of the Paris basin. The Callovo-Oxfordian clayey layer is the potential host rock for reconnaissance work carried out by Andra (e.g., Agence Nationale de Gestion des Déchets Radioactifs) in eastern France, the objective of which is the designing and building of an underground research laboratory to study the aptitude of the clay-marl Callovo-Oxfordian layer for the storage of radioactive wastes. We analyse U and Th trace elements on both the labile fraction (extracted by cold HCl) and the total bulk sediments. The Th contents are extremely low in the Oxfordian shelf reef carbonates (<10 ppb) with respect to the Kimmeridgian-Tithonian clayey marls and the Callovian-Oxfordian argilites (up to 10 ppm). In contrast, the uranium contents are much more homogenous (1 ppm ±0.8) along the section. With respect to bulk concentrations, the nuclide contents in the labile component are particularly low in the Callovian-Oxfordian argilites. This behaviour suggests that given the extremely low permeability of the rock, any groundwater circulation of solutes could only have taken place by diffusion - a very slow mechanism that favours water-rock interactions. For U-series analyses (measured by alpha-spectrometry), a total of 43 bulk-rock samples were preferentially microdrilled from the fine-grained lithologies, although the heterogeneity of carbonate facies within sections necessitated occasional sampling of coarser grained lithologies. Within the carbonate-rich part (Oxfordian to Tithonian) of the section, the 234U/238U ratios slightly fluctuate from secular equilibrium and are interpreted as preferential 234U-solution processes related to groundwater circulation. Preferential removal of 234U in this zone is also indicated by some 230Th/234U activity ratios higher than unity. In contrast, most of the samples from the

  11. Late Jurassic – early Cretaceous inversion of rift structures, and linkage of petroleum system elements across post-rift unconformity, U.S. Chukchi Shelf, arctic Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Houseknecht, David W.; Connors, Christopher D.

    2015-01-01

    Oil-prone source rocks, reservoir-quality sandstone, migration pathways, and structural closure are linked intimately across the Jurassic unconformity, which reflects inversion. Thus, all these key petroleum systems elements were in place when Triassic source rocks entered the oil generation window during Cretaceous–Cenozoic stratigraphic burial.

  12. Late Holocene sea level changes and tectonic movements inferred from fossil diatom assemblages in Tainohama, Tokushima prefecture, Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiba, T.; Fujino, S.; Kobori, E.

    2014-12-01

    The average recurrence interval of the interplate earthquakes along the Nankai Trough is estimated from historical literature and archaeological data. However, the details of tectonic movements by past Nankai earthquakes are mostly left unclear from historical literature, therefore, we need to obtain the geological evidence of the tectonic movements. Yuki city, Tokushima prefecture, located in north part of the Nankai Trough, has been subsided and many tsunamis attacked along the coast of the Shikoku islands accompanied by the previous Nankai earthquakes. Therefore, some historical documents and memorial monuments written about the past Nankai earthquakes and tsunamis remain in the city. The study purposed to reveal tectonic movements of the earthquakes from Nankai Trough during the late Holocene at Tainohama in Minami city which is adjacent to the southwest of Yuki city by fossil diatom analysis. We obtained a 700cm long core at a marsh behind a barrier spit probably be not affected directly from sea waves in Tainohama. The core includes more than 13 sand layers in organic-rich muddy or peaty sedimentary succession up to 500cm depth in the core. And the diatom assemblages included in the peat and peaty mud deposits were dominated by fresh and brackish water species, especially Pseudostaurosira brevistriata, P. subsalina and Tabellaria fenestrate. In contrast to the above mentioned sand layers, brackish and marine species, such as Diploneis smithii increased. The diatom assemblages from the organic rich muddy sediments and radiocarbon ages indicate that freshwater marsh or saltmarsh formed in this region during the late Holocene. On the other hand, the sandy layers include the diatoms living in environments where salinities are higher than freshwater or salt marsh, so the assemblages suggest that the sand layers were transported from seaside by past tsunamis. In addition, changes of diatom assemblages in the peaty or peaty mud sediments show increase or decrease of

  13. First Fossil Record of Alphonsea Hk. f. & T. (Annonaceae) from the Late Oligocene Sediments of Assam, India and Comments on Its Phytogeography

    PubMed Central

    Srivastava, Gaurav; Mehrotra, Rakesh C.

    2013-01-01

    A new fossil leaf impression of Alphonsea Hk. f. & T. of the family Annonaceae is described from the Late Oligocene sediments of Makum Coalfield, Assam, India. This is the first authentic record of the fossil of Alphonsea from the Tertiary rocks of South Asia. The Late Oligocene was the time of the last significant globally warm climate and the fossil locality was at 10°–15°N palaeolatitude. The known palaeoflora and sedimentological studies indicate a fluvio-marine deltaic environment with a mosaic of mangrove, fluvial, mire and lacustrine depositional environments. During the depositional period the suturing between the Indian and Eurasian plates was not complete to facilitate the plant migration. The suturing was over by the end of the Late Oligocene/beginning of Early Miocene resulting in the migration of the genus to Southeast Asia where it is growing profusely at present. The present study is in congruence with the earlier published palaeofloral and molecular phylogenetic data. The study also suggests that the Indian plate was not only a biotic ferry during its northward voyage from Gondwana to Asia but also a place for the origin of several plant taxa. PMID:23349701

  14. First fossil record of Alphonsea Hk. f. & T. (Annonaceae) from the Late Oligocene sediments of Assam, India and comments on its phytogeography.

    PubMed

    Srivastava, Gaurav; Mehrotra, Rakesh C

    2013-01-01

    A new fossil leaf impression of Alphonsea Hk. f. & T. of the family Annonaceae is described from the Late Oligocene sediments of Makum Coalfield, Assam, India. This is the first authentic record of the fossil of Alphonsea from the Tertiary rocks of South Asia. The Late Oligocene was the time of the last significant globally warm climate and the fossil locality was at 10°-15°N palaeolatitude. The known palaeoflora and sedimentological studies indicate a fluvio-marine deltaic environment with a mosaic of mangrove, fluvial, mire and lacustrine depositional environments. During the depositional period the suturing between the Indian and Eurasian plates was not complete to facilitate the plant migration. The suturing was over by the end of the Late Oligocene/beginning of Early Miocene resulting in the migration of the genus to Southeast Asia where it is growing profusely at present. The present study is in congruence with the earlier published palaeofloral and molecular phylogenetic data. The study also suggests that the Indian plate was not only a biotic ferry during its northward voyage from Gondwana to Asia but also a place for the origin of several plant taxa.

  15. An overview of the dinosaur fossil record from Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rubilar-Rogers, David; Otero, Rodrigo A.; Yury-Yáñez, Roberto E.; Vargas, Alexander O.; Gutstein, Carolina S.

    2012-08-01

    In Chile, the record of dinosaurs in Jurassic and Cretaceous sediments is often restricted to footprints, with few skeletal remains. Tetanuran theropods are known in the Upper Jurassic, and bones of titanosaur sauropods in the Late Cretaceous, including partial skeletons (e.g. Atacamatitan chilensis Kellner et al.). Also from the late Cretaceous, an ornithopod vertebra, a pair of theropod teeth and one tarsometatarsus of a gaviiform bird (Neogaeornis wetzeli Lambrecht) have been reported. The Cenozoic fossil record comprises abundant and well-preserved marine birds from Eocene and Miocene units, with a specially abundant record of Sphenisciformes and less frequently, Procellariiformes. There is an excellent Miocene-Pliocene record of other birds such as Odontopterygiformes, including the most complete skeleton ever found of a pelagornithid, Pelagornis chilensis Mayr and Rubilar-Rogers. Fossil birds are also known from Pliocene and Pleistocene strata. A remarkable collection of birds was discovered in lacustrine sediments of late Pleistocene age associated to human activity. The perspectives in the study of dinosaurs in Chile are promising because plenty of material stored in institutional collections is not described yet. The record of Chilean dinosaurs is relevant for understanding the dynamics and evolution of this group of terrestrial animals in the western edge of Gondwana, while Cenozoic birds from the Region may contribute to the understanding of current biogeography for instance, the effect of the emergence and establishment of the Humboldt Current.

  16. Structure and climate controls on the evolution of a Mid-Late Jurassic alluvial fan-delta system in the western part of Yanshan fold-and-thrust belt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Chengfa; Liu, Shaofeng; Yao, Xiang; Ma, Pengfei

    2016-04-01

    The Yanshan fold-thrust belt experienced several significant tectonic events during Mesozoic time and developed thrust fault-bounded intramontane sedimentary basins. However, elaborate works of sedimentology is inadequate in the Yanshan belt, particularly in its western segment, leading to a failure in comprehensively understanding how bounding-faults and climate change influence the basin filling processes. Our detailed sedimentological study of the Middle Jurassic Xiahuayuan Formation and Upper Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous Jiulongshan Formation in the Xiahuayuan basin of northern Hebei province, indicates a genetic relationship between the evolution of an alluvial fan-delta system and the tectonic and climate setting. The Xiahuayuan Formation was assigned to a debris flow-dominated Gilbert-type fan-delta composed of topset conglomerates, foreset massive siltstone-fine grained sandstone interbedded with lenticular conglomerate units and bottomset/lake bottom fine-grained deposits, spatially restricted to the northern part of the basin. While the lower Jiulongshan Formation was considered as a relatively small debris flow- and turbidity currents-dominated fan-delta with a single-ramp portrait, prograding into the middle part of the basin. And the upper part of Jiulongshan Formation contributed to the lake bottom component of the delta system during the forming of the Jiulongshan Formation. Our results reveal a transformation of a fan-delta from Gilbert-type to single-ramp type and the basinward migration of this fan-delta during Mid-Late Jurassic in the Xiahuayuan basin. And it is assumed that the activity of a thrust fault along the northern basin margin and the rapid switch of climate conditions from warm and humid to hot and dry triggered the transformation and migration of this fan-delta system.

  17. The shape of pterosaur evolution: evidence from the fossil record.

    PubMed

    Dyke, G J; McGowan, A J; Nudds, R L; Smith, D

    2009-04-01

    Although pterosaurs are a well-known lineage of Mesozoic flying reptiles, their fossil record and evolutionary dynamics have never been adequately quantified. On the basis of a comprehensive data set of fossil occurrences correlated with taxon-specific limb measurements, we show that the geological ages of pterosaur specimens closely approximate hypothesized patterns of phylogenetic divergence. Although the fossil record has expanded greatly in recent years, collectorship still approximates a sigmoid curve over time as many more specimens (and thus taxa) still remain undiscovered, yet our data suggest that the pterosaur fossil record is unbiased by sites of exceptional preservation (lagerstätte). This is because as new species are discovered the number of known formations and sites yielding pterosaur fossils has also increased - this would not be expected if the bulk of the record came from just a few exceptional faunas. Pterosaur morphological diversification is, however, strongly age biased: rarefaction analysis shows that peaks of diversity occur in the Late Jurassic and Early Cretaceous correlated with periods of increased limb disparity. In this respect, pterosaurs appear unique amongst flying vertebrates in that their disparity seems to have peaked relatively late in clade history. Comparative analyses also show that there is little evidence that the evolutionary diversification of pterosaurs was in any way constrained by the appearance and radiation of birds.

  18. New occurrences of microvertebrate fossil accumulations in Bauru Group, Late Cretaceous of western São Paulo state, Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alveş, Y. M.; Bergqvist, L. P.; Brito, P. M.

    2016-08-01

    In this work, we present the results of several palaeontological expeditions to four Upper Cretaceous fossil microsites of the Adamantina and Presidente Prudente formations in western São Paulo State, Brazil. Despite the fragmentary condition of the fossils recovered, they represent an important record of vertebrate microremains. The material, recovered through screen washing, comprises teeth and scales of Lepisosteidae; two morphotypes of Halecostomi teeth with similarities to Characiformes and Amiiformes; a Teleostei tooth of molariform shape; fin spines of Siluriformes; teeth of possible Baurusuchidae, Notosuchia (probably Adamantinasuchus or Mariliasuchus), Neosuchia (probably Itasuchus or Goniopholis), and other Mesoeucrocodylia indet.; probable teeth of Abelisauroidea, other Theropoda indet., and a phalanx of Aves. The comparative microvertebrate fossil accumulation from western São Paulo State provides evidence that: 1) floodplain channels accumulate large concentrations of microremains; 2) coarse sandstone privileges enamel tissues like teeth and scales; 3) new vertebrate fossil records have been discovered in Florida Paulista, Alfredo Marcondes, and Alvares Machado outcrops.

  19. Tectonic Evolution of the Jurassic Pacific Plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakanishi, M.; Ishihara, T.

    2015-12-01

    We present the tectonic evolution of the Jurassic Pacific plate based on magnetic anomly lineations and abyssal hills. The Pacific plate is the largest oceanic plate on Earth. It was born as a microplate aroud the Izanagi-Farallon-Phoenix triple junction about 192 Ma, Early Jurassic [Nakanishi et al., 1992]. The size of the Pacific plate at 190 Ma was nearly half that of the present Easter or Juan Fernandez microplates in the East Pacific Rise [Martinez et at, 1991; Larson et al., 1992]. The plate boundary surrounding the Pacific plate from Early Jurassic to Early Cretaceous involved the four triple junctions among Pacific, Izanagi, Farallon, and Phoenix plates. The major tectonic events as the formation of oceanic plateaus and microplates during the period occurred in the vicinity of the triple junctions [e.g., Nakanishi and Winterer, 1998; Nakanishi et al., 1999], implying that the study of the triple junctions is indispensable for understanding the tectonic evolution of the Pacific plate. Previous studies indicate instability of the configuration of the triple junctions from Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous (155-125 Ma). On the other hand, the age of the birth of the Pacific plate was determined assuming that all triple junctions had kept their configurations for about 30 m.y. [Nakanishi et al., 1992] because of insufficient information of the tectonic history of the Pacific plate before Late Jurassic.Increase in the bathymetric and geomagnetic data over the past two decades enables us to reveal the tectonic evolution of the Pacific-Izanagi-Farallon triple junction before Late Jurassic. Our detailed identication of magnetic anomaly lineations exposes magnetic bights before anomaly M25. We found the curved abyssal hills originated near the triple junction, which trend is parallel to magnetic anomaly lineations. These results imply that the configuration of the Pacific-Izanagi-Farallon triple junction had been RRR before Late Jurassic.

  20. The occurrence of an abdominal fauna in an articulated tapir (Tapirus polkensis) from the Late Miocene Gray Fossil Site, Northeastern Tennessee.

    PubMed

    McConnell, Shannon M; Zavada, Michael S

    2013-03-01

    The analysis of samples recovered from the abdominal area of an articulated tapir (Tapirus polkensis) from the Late Miocene (4.5-7 million BP) Gray Fossil Site (GFS) revealed a rich palyno-fauna comprised of about 94% egg/oocyst-like structures and 6% pollen and other palynomorphs. In addition, a group of 6 hickory nuts (Carya) was recovered from the same area suggesting that the samples represent the abdominal contents. The analysis of a sample from immediately outside the tapir produced a sample with 98% pollen and less than 0.5% egg/oocyst-like structures. The size, shape, and general morphology of egg/oocyst-like structures were analyzed with light and scanning electron microscopy and were compared to a variety of intestinal parasites found in extant ungulates, and the Perissodactyla in particular. We also compared fossil structures to the numbers and kind of intestinal parasites recovered from fecal samples from the Baird's tapir (T. bairdii) in Costa Rica and from samples collected from the lowland tapir (T. terrestris) from Ecuador to assess their similarity to our fossil sample. Based on these data, we discuss what role parasites may have played in the biology of T. polkensis during the Late Miocene-Early Pliocene.

  1. Emplacement mechanism of the Middle-Late Jurassic Qitianling pluton and its implications on the Mesozoic tectonics of South China Block

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Hongsheng; Chen, Yan; Faure, Michel; Scaillet, Bruno; Wang, Bo; Martelet, Guillaume; Huang, Fangfang; Zhu, Jinchu; Wang, Rucheng; Erdmann, Saskia

    2016-04-01

    The widespread Mesozoic magmatism that extends about 1500km along the NE-SW strike and 800km wide in the southeastern part of the South China Block is a remarkable feature that has attracted the attention of geoscientists since 1940's. Numerous studies have been carried out, and consequently, several geodynamic models related to the emplacement mechanism have been proposed, based essentially on petrology, geochronology, and (isotopic) geochemistry. Recently, a general consensus is apparently achieved within the geosciences community on the tectonic contexts of the South China Block during the Triassic (compressive) and Cretaceous (extensive) periods, however the tectonic setting of the Jurassic is still in debate, moreover the Jurassic magmatism is closely related to abundant mineralization of rare metal elements. Due to the similarities in age, rock type and major geochemical feature of Jurassic granite, the Qitianling granitic pluton, situated in the Nanling area and dated at ca. 157 Ma, was chosen as the target of this study among 41 visited plutons. Previous studies divide the Qitianling pluton into three petrographic facies, namely: i) Bt + Qtz + Fsd + Amp, ii) Bt + Qtz + Fsd + (Amp) , iii) Bt + Qtz + Fsd. Zircon U-Pb dating indicate the age peak of these different facies at 161Ma, 157-156Ma and 149Ma, respectively. The field observation shows that: 1) the granite is isotropic without visible preferred mineral orientation or deformation; 2) the contact between the granite and country rocks is sharp, with a 1-10m narrow thermal aureole, but without any visible deformation. The microscopic observation on the thin sections of wall rocks and granite doesn't show any mineral preferred orientation consisting to the field observation. Therefore, a total of 53 sampling sites and 318 oriented cores were collected from the Qitianling pluton for an Anisotropy of Magnetic Susceptibility (AMS) study. The investigation on rock magnetism shows the pseudo

  2. Jurassic Paleolatitudes, Paleogeography, and Climate Transitions In the Mexican Subcontinen

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molina-Garza, R. S.; Geissman, J. W.; Lawton, T. F.

    2014-12-01

    Jurassic northward migration of Mexico, trailing the North America plate, resulted in temporal evolution of climate-sensitive depositional environments. Lower-Middle Jurassic rocks in central Mexico contain a record of warm-humid conditions, which are indicated by coal and compositionally mature sandstone deposited in continental environments. Preliminary paleomagnetic data indicate that these rocks were deposited at near-equatorial paleolatitudes. The Middle Jurassic (ca. 170 Ma) Diquiyú volcanic sequence in central Oaxaca give an overall mean of D=82.2º/ I= +4.1º (n=10; k=17.3, α95=12º). In the Late Jurassic, the Gulf of Mexico formed as a subsidiary basin of the Atlantic Ocean, when the supercontinent Pangaea ruptured. Upper Jurassic strata, including eolianite and widespread evaporite deposits, across Mexico indicate dry-arid conditions. Available paleomagnetic data (compaction-corrected) from eolianites in northeast Mexico indicate deposition at ~15-20ºN. As North America moved northward during Jurassic opening of the Atlantic, different latitudinal regions experienced coeval Late Jurassic climatic shifts. Climate transitions have been widely recognized in the Colorado plateau region. The plateau left the horse-latitudes in the late Middle Jurassic to reach temperate humid climates at ~40ºN in the latest Jurassic. In turn, the southern end of the North America plate (central Mexico) reached arid horse-latitudes in the Late Jurassic. At that time, epeiric platforms developed in the circum-Gulf region after a long period of margin extension. We suggest that Upper Jurassic hydrocarbon source rocks in the circum-Gulf region accumulated on these platforms as warm epeiric hypersaline seas and the Gulf of Mexico itself were fertilized by an influx of wind-blown silt from continental regions. Additional nutrients were brought to shallow zones of photosynthesis by ocean upwelling driven by changes in the continental landmass configuration.

  3. Triassic and Jurassic rocks at Currie, Nevada Preliminary paleontologic evidence

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, E.A.; Dubiel, R.F.; Brouwers, E.M. ); Litwin, R.J. ); Ash, S.R. ); Good, S.C. )

    1993-04-01

    A sequence of continental rocks overlies the Lower Triassic Thaynes Formation in a poorly exposed syncline near Currie in northeastern NV. The authors recognize four lithostratigraphic units above the Thaynes near Currie and provide new paleontologic data. In ascending order, unit 1 (120 ft) consists of reddish-brown, very fine grained sandstone. Unit 2 (50 ft) consists of light-gray, trough cross-stratified, coarse-grained, conglomeratic sandstone. Unit 3 (at least 500 ft) consists of green, red, and brown sandstone and mudstone. Unit 4 occurs as isolated outcrops of reddish-orange, fine- to medium-grained sandstone. New fossil evidence, while not definitive, constrain the age of this sequence. Plant megafossils in unit 1 include (1) a specimen with narrow ovate leaves, possibly from an early Mesozoic conifer and (2) abundant fragments of probable Neocalamites. The presence of these fossils and the absence of any angiosperm leaves or wood fragments suggest an early Mesozoic age. Ostracodes in unit 3 are exclusively Darwinula sp., and their association with conchostracans in the absence of younger ostracodes suggests a Triassic age. Finally, two small outcrops, previously mapped as Triassic/Jurassic, contain the gastropods Pilidae indet. and Lymnaea sp., which resemble Late Cretaceous to Paleocene faunas. The sequence is similar to the nearest Lower Mesozoic section on the Colorado Plateau at Cove Fort, Utah, 165 miles to the southeast. The authors' new evidence supports the longstanding correlation of units 1--4 with the Lower Triassic Moenkopi Formation (part), the Shinarump and Petrified Forest Members of the Upper Triassic Chinle Formation, and the Lower Jurassic Navajo Sandstone of the Plateau. These rocks at Currie demonstrate that the Early Mesozoic depositional systems of the Colorado Plateau extended at least this far west and provide constraints on Early Mesozoic tectonism in the eastern Great Basin.

  4. Thorough assessment of DNA preservation from fossil bone and sediments excavated from a late Pleistocene-Holocene cave deposit on Kangaroo Island, South Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haouchar, Dalal; Haile, James; McDowell, Matthew C.; Murray, Dáithí C.; White, Nicole E.; Allcock, Richard J. N.; Phillips, Matthew J.; Prideaux, Gavin J.; Bunce, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Fossils and sediments preserved in caves are an excellent source of information for investigating impacts of past environmental changes on biodiversity. Until recently studies have relied on morphology-based palaeontological approaches, but recent advances in molecular analytical methods offer excellent potential for extracting a greater array of biological information from these sites. This study presents a thorough assessment of DNA preservation from late Pleistocene-Holocene vertebrate fossils and sediments from Kelly Hill Cave Kangaroo Island, South Australia. Using a combination of extraction techniques and sequencing technologies, ancient DNA was characterised from over 70 bones and 20 sediment samples from 15 stratigraphic layers ranging in age from >20 ka to ˜6.8 ka. A combination of primers targeting marsupial and placental mammals, reptiles and two universal plant primers were used to reveal genetic biodiversity for comparison with the mainland and with the morphological fossil record for Kelly Hill Cave. We demonstrate that Kelly Hill Cave has excellent long-term DNA preservation, back to at least 20 ka. This contrasts with the majority of Australian cave sites thus far explored for ancient DNA preservation, and highlights the great promise Kangaroo Island caves hold for yielding the hitherto-elusive DNA of extinct Australian Pleistocene species.

  5. Embryology of Early Jurassic dinosaur from China with evidence of preserved organic remains.

    PubMed

    Reisz, Robert R; Huang, Timothy D; Roberts, Eric M; Peng, ShinRung; Sullivan, Corwin; Stein, Koen; LeBlanc, Aaron R H; Shieh, DarBin; Chang, RongSeng; Chiang, ChengCheng; Yang, Chuanwei; Zhong, Shiming

    2013-04-11

    Fossil dinosaur embryos are surprisingly rare, being almost entirely restricted to Upper Cretaceous strata that record the late stages of non-avian dinosaur evolution. Notable exceptions are the oldest known embryos from the Early Jurassic South African sauropodomorph Massospondylus and Late Jurassic embryos of a theropod from Portugal. The fact that dinosaur embryos are rare and typically enclosed in eggshells limits their availability for tissue and cellular level investigations of development. Consequently, little is known about growth patterns in dinosaur embryos, even though post-hatching ontogeny has been studied in several taxa. Here we report the discovery of an embryonic dinosaur bone bed from the Lower Jurassic of China, the oldest such occurrence in the fossil record. The embryos are similar in geological age to those of Massospondylus and are also assignable to a sauropodomorph dinosaur, probably Lufengosaurus. The preservation of numerous disarticulated skeletal elements and eggshells in this monotaxic bone bed, representing different stages of incubation and therefore derived from different nests, provides opportunities for new investigations of dinosaur embryology in a clade noted for gigantism. For example, comparisons among embryonic femora of different sizes and developmental stages reveal a consistently rapid rate of growth throughout development, possibly indicating that short incubation times were characteristic of sauropodomorphs. In addition, asymmetric radial growth of the femoral shaft and rapid expansion of the fourth trochanter suggest that embryonic muscle activation played an important role in the pre-hatching ontogeny of these dinosaurs. This discovery also provides the oldest evidence of in situ preservation of complex organic remains in a terrestrial vertebrate.

  6. Paleontology, paleoclimatology and paleoecology of the late middle miocene Musselshell Creek flora, Clearwater County Idaho. A preliminary study of a new fossil flora

    SciTech Connect

    Baghai, N.L.; Jorstad, R.B.

    1995-10-01

    The Musselshell Creek flora (12.0-10.5 Ma) of northern Idaho is used to reconstruct paleoclimatic and paleoecologic parameters of the Pacific Northwest during the late Middle Miocene. Other megafossil and microfossil floral records spanning 12.0-6.4 Ma are unknown from this region. The Musselshell Creek fossil flora, previously undescribed, is preserved in lacustrine clays and sediments that accumulated in a narrow valley surrounded by rugged terrain. Dominant taxa include dicotyledons and conifers. Most of the leaves are preserved as impressions or compressions. Some fossil leaves retained their original pigmentation, cellular anatomy, and organic constituents. Other fossils include excellent remains of pollen and spores, dispersed leaf cuticle, pyritized wood, and disarticulated fish bones. A destructive statistical analysis of one block of sediment, approximately 30 cm x 45 cm (1.5 sq. ft) recovered 14 orders, 23 families, and 34 genera of spermatophyte plant fossils. These floral elements are compared with two other earlier Miocene floras which were similarly sampled. Common megafossil genera include Quercus, Zizy-phoides, Taxodium, Alnus, Castanea, Magnolia, Acer, Ex-bucklandia, Sequoia, Populus, and Betula. The rare occurrence of Ginkgo leaves is a first record of this taxon in the Idaho Miocene. Additional plant taxa, are represented by palynomorphs. Common pollen taxa are Pinus, Abies, Carya, Quercus, and Tilia. Most of the megafossil and microfossil flora assemblage is characteristic of a streambank to floodplain environment that existed in a warm to cool temperate climate similar to the modern Mid-Atlantic coast of the United States. 47 refs., 5 figs., 4 tabs.

  7. Late Paleocene fossils from the Cerrejón Formation, Colombia, are the earliest record of Neotropical rainforest

    PubMed Central

    Wing, Scott L.; Herrera, Fabiany; Jaramillo, Carlos A.; Gómez-Navarro, Carolina; Wilf, Peter; Labandeira, Conrad C.

    2009-01-01

    Neotropical rainforests have a very poor fossil record, making hypotheses concerning their origins difficult to evaluate. Nevertheless, some of their most important characteristics can be preserved in the fossil record: high plant diversity, dominance by a distinctive combination of angiosperm families, a preponderance of plant species with large, smooth-margined leaves, and evidence for a high diversity of herbivorous insects. Here, we report on an ≈58-my-old flora from the Cerrejón Formation of Colombia (paleolatitude ≈5 °N) that is the earliest megafossil record of Neotropical rainforest. The flora has abundant, diverse palms and legumes and similar family composition to extant Neotropical rainforest. Three-quarters of the leaf types are large and entire-margined, indicating rainfall >2,500 mm/year and mean annual temperature >25 °C. Despite modern family composition and tropical paleoclimate, the diversity of fossil pollen and leaf samples is 60–80% that of comparable samples from extant and Quaternary Neotropical rainforest from similar climates. Insect feeding damage on Cerrejón fossil leaves, representing primary consumers, is abundant, but also of low diversity, and overwhelmingly made by generalist feeders rather than specialized herbivores. Cerrejón megafossils provide strong evidence that the same Neotropical rainforest families have characterized the biome since the Paleocene, maintaining their importance through climatic phases warmer and cooler than present. The low diversity of both plants and herbivorous insects in this Paleocene Neotropical rainforest may reflect an early stage in the diversification of the lineages that inhabit this biome, and/or a long recovery period from the terminal Cretaceous extinction. PMID:19833876

  8. Paleomagnetic and rock magnetic evidence for a secondary yet early magnetization in large sandstone pipes and host Late Middle Jurassic (Callovian) Summerville Formation and Bluff Sandstone near Mesita, west central New Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geissman, John W.; Harlan, Stephen S.

    2004-07-01

    significantly to the characteristic remanent magnetization. The similarity in demagnetization properties between pipes and adjacent host strata, the absence of a well-defined high unblocking temperature remanence that is more typical of hematite-cemented detrital strata, and the essentially uniform reverse polarity of the remanence are all interpreted to indicate that pipes and host strata contain secondary, yet early acquired magnetizations and that magnetization acquisition continued after pipe injection. We propose that acquisition of the secondary magnetization took place in the presence of alkaline, high pH brines formed by the dissolution of the underlying gypsum-dominated Lower Jurassic Todilto Formation strata and therefore the remanence is early in age. On the basis of a comparison with Summerville and Morrison (Middle and Late Jurassic) paleomagnetic poles from rocks on the Colorado Plateau, we interpret the secondary remanence in Summerville strata and sandstone pipes near Laguna to be latest Middle to Late Jurassic in age. If realistic, this interpretation further emphasizes the importance of fluid-rock interaction in the acquisition of secondary magnetizations.

  9. Do species populations really start small? New perspectives from the Late Neogene fossil record of African mammals.

    PubMed Central

    Vrba, E S; DeGusta, D

    2004-01-01

    This analysis of all known African larger mammals of the past 10 Myr offers new perspectives on the geographical circumstances of speciation. Our central question is: does the fossil evidence support the idea that most new species start as small populations and, if true, how long is the average growth interval until species are established at their mean later size? This simple question is important to unravelling the competing claims of rival models of speciation. We approached it by direct use of fossil data, which, to our knowledge, has not been done previously. We compared the numbers of fossil site records, as a proxy for magnitude of geographical spread, between survivorship intervals across all species. The results show that the average mammal species has indeed started its life in a relatively small population, and thereafter increased rapidly in geographical spread to reach its long-term equilibrium abundance by about 1 million years after origin. Some theoretical implications of these results are discussed. PMID:15101584

  10. 3D morphometric analysis of fossil canid skulls contradicts the suggested domestication of dogs during the late Paleolithic.

    PubMed

    Drake, Abby Grace; Coquerelle, Michael; Colombeau, Guillaume

    2015-02-05

    Whether dogs were domesticated during the Pleistocene, when humans were hunter-gatherers, or during the Neolithic, when humans began to form permanent settlements and engage in agriculture, remains controversial. Recently discovered Paleolithic fossil skulls, Goyet dated 31,680 +/- 250 YBP and Eliseevichi MAE 447/5298 dated 13,905 +/- 55 YBP, were previously identified as dogs. However, new genetic studies contradict the identification of these specimens as dogs, questioning the validity of traditional measurements used to morphologically identify canid fossil skulls. We employ 3D geometric morphometric analyses to compare the cranial morphology of Goyet and Eliseevichi MAE to that of ancient and modern dogs and wolves. We demonstrate that these Paleolithic canids are definitively wolves and not dogs. Compared to mesaticephalic (wolf-like breeds) dog skulls, Goyet and Eliseevichi MAE, do not have cranial flexion and the dorsal surface of their muzzles has no concavity near the orbits. Morphologically, these early fossil canids resemble wolves, and thus no longer support the establishment of dog domestication in the Paleolithic.

  11. A New Basal Sauropodomorph Dinosaur from the Lower Jurassic Navajo Sandstone of Southern Utah

    PubMed Central

    Sertich, Joseph J. W.; Loewen, Mark A.

    2010-01-01

    Background Basal sauropodomorphs, or ‘prosauropods,’ are a globally widespread paraphyletic assemblage of terrestrial herbivorous dinosaurs from the Late Triassic and Early Jurassic. In contrast to several other landmasses, the North American record of sauropodomorphs during this time interval remains sparse, limited to Early Jurassic occurrences of a single well-known taxon from eastern North America and several fragmentary specimens from western North America. Methodology/Principal Findings On the basis of a partial skeleton, we describe here a new basal sauropodomorph dinosaur from the Lower Jurassic Navajo Sandstone of southern Utah, Seitaad ruessi gen. et sp. nov. The partially articulated skeleton of Seitaad was likely buried post-mortem in the base of a collapsed dune foreset. The new taxon is characterized by a plate-like medial process of the scapula, a prominent proximal expansion of the deltopectoral crest of the humerus, a strongly inclined distal articular surface of the radius, and a proximally and laterally hypertrophied proximal metacarpal I. Conclusions/Significance Phylogenetic analysis recovers Seitaad as a derived basal sauropodomorph closely related to plateosaurid or massospondylid ‘prosauropods’ and its presence in western North America is not unexpected for a member of this highly cosmopolitan clade. This occurrence represents one of the most complete vertebrate body fossil specimens yet recovered from the Navajo Sandstone and one of the few basal sauropodomorph taxa currently known from North America. PMID:20352090

  12. Extreme mobility in the Late Pleistocene? Comparing limb biomechanics among fossil Homo, varsity athletes and Holocene foragers.

    PubMed

    Shaw, Colin N; Stock, Jay T

    2013-04-01

    Descriptions of Pleistocene activity patterns often derive from comparisons of long bone diaphyseal robusticity across contemporaneous fossilized hominins. The purpose of this study is to augment existing understanding of Pleistocene hominin mobility patterns by interpreting fossil variation through comparisons with a) living human athletes with known activity patterns, and b) Holocene foragers where descriptions of group-level activity patterns are available. Relative tibial rigidity (midshaft tibial rigidity (J)/midshaft humeral rigidity (J)) was compared amongst Levantine and European Neandertals, Levantine and Upper Palaeolithic Homo sapiens, Holocene foragers and living human athletes and controls. Cross-country runners exhibit significantly (p<0.05) greater relative tibial rigidity compared with swimmers, and higher values compared with controls. In contrast, swimmers displayed significantly (p<0.05) lower relative tibial rigidity than both runners and controls. While variation exists among all Holocene H. sapiens, highly terrestrially mobile Later Stone Age (LSA) southern Africans and cross-country runners display the highest relative tibial rigidity, while maritime Andaman Islanders and swimmers display the lowest, with controls falling between. All fossil hominins displayed relative tibial rigidity that exceeded, or was similar to, the highly terrestrially mobile Later Stone Age southern Africans and modern human cross-country runners. The more extreme skeletal structure of most Neandertals and Levantine H. sapiens, as well as the odd Upper Palaeolithic individual, appears to reflect adaptation to intense and/or highly repetitive lower limb (relative to upper limb) loading. This loading may have been associated with bipedal travel, and appears to have been more strenuous than that encountered by even university varsity runners, and Holocene foragers with hunting grounds 2000-3000 square miles in size. Skeletal variation among the athletes and foraging

  13. Petrology of a Jurassic cold seep carbonate mound, Great Valley Group, northern California

    SciTech Connect

    Campbell, K.A.; Bottjer, D.J. . Dept. of Geological Sciences)

    1992-01-01

    Ancient sites of chemosynthetic marine invertebrate communities have been increasingly described from the stratigraphic record. Fossil cold seeps are best identified by the stratigraphically restricted co-occurrence of anomalous carbonates and fossils of organisms that in modern environments are chemosymbiotic. A Late Jurassic (Tithonian) age fossil seep site is preserved in deep-water turbidites of the Stony Creek Formation (Great Valley Group). Two low-relief carbonate mounds contain an abundant and diverse fossil macrofauna including taxa whose modern counterparts are chemosymbiotic, as well as several associate taxa. Two broad carbonate fabric types are present: a bioturbated, peloidal, fossiliferous micrite with abundant flecks of organic matter and several wavy laminated marine cements. The micrite and cements are either irregularly interlayered on distinctly separated by corrosion surfaces coated with iron oxides that may mark pulses of H[sub 2]S-rich fluids to the seep. Petrographic observations indicate the following idealized paragenetic sequence: deposition of micrite, with contemporaneous biotic activity; corrosion event, with preferential preservation of some peloids; precipitation of pyrite on some corrosion surfaces and concentration of insoluble siltstone linings where corrosion has opened vugs; precipitation of blocky yellow calcite cement with organic-rich inclusions in void spaces and around peloids; growth of clear to gray, botryoidal to fibrous cement; and precipitation of late, clear calcite spar. Similar fabrics and abundant tube-like structures are present in another Great Valley carbonate lens of Early Cretaceous (Albian-Aptian) age exposed on the Cold Fork of Cottonwood Creek near Red Bluff, California. Detailed integration of petrological studies of these fabrics with stable isotope studies and fossil faunal distributions provide a powerful approach for understanding the history of development and individual fossil seeps.

  14. U-Pb zircon ages and geochemistry of Kangareh and Taghiabad mafic bodies in northern Sanandaj-Sirjan Zone, Iran: Evidence for intra-oceanic arc and back-arc tectonic regime in Late Jurassic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Azizi, Hossein; Najari, Mohammad; Asahara, Yoshihiro; Catlos, Elizabeth J.; Shimizu, Misa; Yamamoto, Koshi

    2015-10-01

    The northern Sanandaj-Sirjan Zone (SaSZ) in northwestern Iran contains several granitoid and gabbroic bodies that are parallel to the Zagros Suture zone in a northwest-southeast direction. The fine-grained Taghiabad gabbro and coarse-grained Kangareh gabbroic bodies southwest of the Ghorveh in the northern SaSZ were crystallized at 158.0 ± 10.0 Ma and 148.3 ± 3.6 Ma, respectively, based on U-Pb zircon dating. The SiO2 contents of the Kangareh and Taghiabad rocks are similar and range from 45.5 to 51.5 wt.%, and the Al2O3 contents vary from 14 to 24 wt.%, with high Mg number (Mg# = 61-72% and 46-63%, respectively). The Taghiabad body has higher contents of TiO2, Fe2O3, and P2O5 than the Kangareh rocks. The Fe2O3 contents of the Taghiabad rocks vary from 6 to 15 wt.%, whereas those of the Kangareh rocks range from 5 to 9 wt.%. The TiO2 concentrations of the Taghiabad samples are high (1-3 wt.%), and these rocks can be classified as high Ti and Fe rocks. The chemical compositions of the two bodies show some clear differences. Positive εNd(t) values (+ 3 to + 8) and low initial 87Sr/86Sr ratios (0.7034 to 0.7054) indicate a depleted mantle source for both bodies. The variation and distribution of trace elements, REEs patterns, and initial 87Sr/86Sr-143Nd/144Nd ratios show that the Kangareh and Taghiabad bodies have high affinities to tholeiitic and alkaline magmatic series. These results suggest an arc and back-arc system regime in an intra-oceanic system than the Andean magmatic type regime for the origin of these bodies in the Middle to Late Jurassic period. These complexes merged with the northern SaSZ during accretion-type continental growth in the Late Jurassic.

  15. Early diagenetic dolomitization and dedolomitization of Late Jurassic and earliest Cretaceous platform carbonates: A case study from the Jura Mountains (NW Switzerland, E France)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rameil, Niels

    2008-12-01

    Early diagenetic dolomitization is a common feature in cyclic shallow-water carbonates throughout the geologic record. After their generation, dolomites may be subject to dedolomitization (re-calcification of dolomites), e.g. by contact with meteoric water during emersion. These patterns of dolomitization and subsequent dedolomitization frequently play a key role in unravelling the development and history of a carbonate platform. On the basis of excellent outcrops, detailed logging and sampling and integrating sedimentological work, high-resolution sequence stratigraphic interpretations, and isotope analyses (O, C), conceptual models on early diagenetic dolomitization and dedolomitization and their underlying mechanisms were developed for the Upper Jurassic / Lower Cretaceous Jura platform in north-western Switzerland and eastern France. Three different types of early diagenetic dolomites and two types of dedolomites were observed. Each is defined by a distinct petrographic/isotopic signature and a distinct spatial distribution pattern. Different types of dolomites are interpreted to have been formed by different mechanisms, such as shallow seepage reflux, evaporation on tidal flats, and microbially mediated selective dolomitization of burrows. Depending on the type of dolomite, sea water with normal marine to slightly enhanced salinities is proposed as dolomitizing fluid. Based on the data obtained, the main volume of dolomite was precipitated by a reflux mechanism that was switched on and off by high-frequency sea-level changes. It appears, however, that more than one dolomitization mechanism was active (pene)contemporaneously or several processes alternated in time. During early diagenesis, percolating meteoric waters obviously played an important role in the dedolomitization of carbonate rocks that underlie exposure surfaces. Cyclostratigraphic interpretation of the sedimentary succession allows for estimates on the timing of early diagenetic (de

  16. Fossil Mice and Rats Show Isotopic Evidence of Niche Partitioning and Change in Dental Ecomorphology Related to Dietary Shift in Late Miocene of Pakistan

    PubMed Central

    Kimura, Yuri; Jacobs, Louis L.; Cerling, Thure E.; Uno, Kevin T.; Ferguson, Kurt M.; Flynn, Lawrence J.; Patnaik, Rajeev

    2013-01-01

    Stable carbon isotope analysis in tooth enamel is a well-established approach to infer C3 and C4 dietary composition in fossil mammals. The bulk of past work has been conducted on large herbivorous mammals. One important finding is that their dietary habits of fossil large mammals track the late Miocene ecological shift from C3 forest and woodland to C4 savannah. However, few studies on carbon isotopes of fossil small mammals exist due to limitations imposed by the size of rodent teeth, and the isotopic ecological and dietary behaviors of small mammals to climate change remain unknown. Here we evaluate the impact of ecological change on small mammals by fine-scale comparisons of carbon isotope ratios (δ13C) with dental morphology of murine rodents, spanning 13.8 to ∼2.0 Ma, across the C3 to C4 vegetation shift in the Miocene Siwalik sequence of Pakistan. We applied in-situ laser ablation GC-IRMS to lower first molars and measured two grazing indices on upper first molars. Murine rodents yield a distinct, but related, record of past ecological conditions from large herbivorous mammals, reflecting available foods in their much smaller home ranges. In general, larger murine species show more positive δ13C values and have higher grazing indices than smaller species inhabiting the same area at any given age. Two clades of murine rodents experienced different rates of morphological change. In the faster-evolving clade, the timing and trend of morphological innovations are closely tied to consumption of C4 diet during the vegetation shift. This study provides quantitative evidence of linkages among diet, niche partitioning, and dental morphology at a more detailed level than previously possible. PMID:23936324

  17. Fossil mice and rats show isotopic evidence of niche partitioning and change in dental ecomorphology related to dietary shift in Late Miocene of Pakistan.

    PubMed

    Kimura, Yuri; Jacobs, Louis L; Cerling, Thure E; Uno, Kevin T; Ferguson, Kurt M; Flynn, Lawrence J; Patnaik, Rajeev

    2013-01-01

    Stable carbon isotope analysis in tooth enamel is a well-established approach to infer C3 and C4 dietary composition in fossil mammals. The bulk of past work has been conducted on large herbivorous mammals. One important finding is that their dietary habits of fossil large mammals track the late Miocene ecological shift from C3 forest and woodland to C4 savannah. However, few studies on carbon isotopes of fossil small mammals exist due to limitations imposed by the size of rodent teeth, and the isotopic ecological and dietary behaviors of small mammals to climate change remain unknown. Here we evaluate the impact of ecological change on small mammals by fine-scale comparisons of carbon isotope ratios (δ(13)C) with dental morphology of murine rodents, spanning 13.8 to ∼2.0 Ma, across the C3 to C4 vegetation shift in the Miocene Siwalik sequence of Pakistan. We applied in-situ laser ablation GC-IRMS to lower first molars and measured two grazing indices on upper first molars. Murine rodents yield a distinct, but related, record of past ecological conditions from large herbivorous mammals, reflecting available foods in their much smaller home ranges. In general, larger murine species show more positive δ(13)C values and have higher grazing indices than smaller species inhabiting the same area at any given age. Two clades of murine rodents experienced different rates of morphological change. In the faster-evolving clade, the timing and trend of morphological innovations are closely tied to consumption of C4 diet during the vegetation shift. This study provides quantitative evidence of linkages among diet, niche partitioning, and dental morphology at a more detailed level than previously possible.

  18. Fossil vertebrates from Antigua, Lesser Antilles: Evidence for late Holocene human-caused extinctions in the West Indies

    PubMed Central

    Steadman, David W.; Pregill, Gregory K.; Olson, Storrs L.

    1984-01-01

    Vertebrate remains recovered from a limestone fissure filling on Antigua, Lesser Antilles, are associated with radiocarbon dates ranging from 4300 to 2500 yr B.P., contemporaneous with the earliest aboriginal human occupation of the island. Nine taxa of lizards, snakes, birds, bats, and rodents (one-third of the total number of species represented as fossils) are either completely extinct or have never been recorded historically from Antigua. These extinctions came long after any major climatic changes of the Pleistocene and are best attributed to human-caused environmental degradation in the past 3500 yr. Such unnatural influences have probably altered patterns of distribution and species diversity throughout the West Indies, thus rendering unreliable the data traditionally used in ecological and biogeographic studies that consider only the historically known fauna. PMID:16593490

  19. Correlation of the major late Jurassic —early Tertiary low- and highstand cycles of south-west Egypt and north-west Sudan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wycisk, Peter

    1994-12-01

    The mainly continental deposits of northwest Sudan and south-west Egypt have been correlated with coeval shallow marine and marine deposits in northern Egypt along a north-south running cross-section, based on surface and subsurface data. The palaeodepth curve of northern Egypt illustrates the gradual seal-level rise, reaching its maximum during the Late Cretaceous with conspicuous advances during the Aptian and late Cenomanian. A general highstand is also recorded during the Campanian-Maastrichtian in north-west Sudan. A detailed facies correlation is given for the Aptian and late Cenomanian highstand in western Egypt. The correlation of the Cenomanian Bahariya and Maghrabi formations displays short-term relative sealevel fluctuations. The interpretation illustrates the extensiveness of related erosional processes in the hinterland, partly intensified by temporarily uplift of the Uweinat-Aswan High in the south. Regional uplift and constant erosion took place in south-west Egypt during Coniacian and Santonian times. The regional stratigraphic gaps and uncertain interpretation of the Bahariya Uplift are induced by the influence of the Trans-African Lineament, especially during the Late Cretaceous. Low-stand fluvial sheet sandstones characterized by non-cyclic sequence development and high facies stability occur, especially in the Neocomian and early Turonian. During the Barremian and Albian, fluvial architecture changes to more cyclic fluvial sequences and increasing soil formation, due to increasing subsidence, more humid climatic conditions and the generally rising sea level, culminating in the extensive shallow marine Abu Ballas and Maghrabi formations.

  20. Post-Jurassic mammal-like reptile from the Palaeocene.

    PubMed

    Fox, R C; Youzwyshyn, G P; Krause, D W

    1992-07-16

    Mammal-like reptiles of the order Therapsida document the emergence of mammals from more primitive synapsids and are of unique zoological and palaeontological interest on that account. Therapsids, first appearing in the Early Permian, were thought to become extinct in the Middle Jurassic, soon after the Late Triassic origin of mammals. Here, however, we report the discovery of a therapsid from the late Palaeocene, 100 million years younger than the youngest previous occurrence of the order. This discovery nearly doubles the stratigraphic range of therapsids and furnishes their first record from the Cenozoic. The documenting fossils, an incomplete dentary containing three teeth, and four isolated teeth from other, conspecific individuals (Fig. 1), are from the Paskapoo Formation, at Cochrane, Alberta, Canada, from beds yielding a diverse mammalian fauna of early Tiffanian age. These specimens are catalogued in the collections of the University of Alberta Laboratory for Vertebrate Paleontology (UALVP) and provide the basis for a new taxon, as named and described below: (see text)

  1. The view from the Lincoln Cave: mid- to late Pleistocene fossil deposits from Sterkfontein hominid site, South Africa.

    PubMed

    Reynolds, S C; Clarke, R J; Kuman, K A

    2007-09-01

    The Lincoln-Fault cave system lies adjacent to the Sterkfontein Cave system in the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site, Gauteng Province, South Africa. Lincoln Cave contains a mid- to late Pleistocene fossiliferous deposit which has been dated using uranium series methods to between 252,600+/-35,600 and 115,300+/-7,700 years old. Although speleologists presumed that there was no connection between the Lincoln Cave and Sterkfontein Cave systems, results of excavations conducted in 1997 suggest a link between the deposits. Detailed comparisons of artifacts, fauna, hominid material, and a statistical correspondence analysis (CA) of the macromammalian fauna in the deposits strongly support this hypothesis. The recovery of Early Acheulean-type artifacts from the Lincoln Cave suggests that older artifacts eroded out of Sterkfontein Member 5 West and were redeposited into the younger Lincoln Cave deposits. The close physical proximity of these deposits, and the nature of the material recovered from them, indicates that the material was probably redeposited via a link between the two cave systems. Although faunal mixing is present, it is possible to say that large carnivorans become more scarce at Sterkfontein during the mid- to late Pleistocene, while small canids and felids appear to become more abundant, indicating that large and small carnivorans probably varied their use of the site through time. This may also reflect an increasing presence of humans in the Sterkfontein area during the mid- to late Pleistocene.

  2. High-elevation late Pleistocene (MIS 6-5) vertebrate faunas from the Ziegler Reservoir fossil site, Snowmass Village, Colorado

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sertich, Joseph J. W.; Stucky, Richard K.; McDonald, H. Gregory; Newton, Cody; Fisher, Daniel C.; Scott, Eric; Demboski, John R.; Lucking, Carol; McHorse, Brianna K.; Davis, Edward B.

    2014-11-01

    The vertebrate record at the Ziegler Reservoir fossil site (ZRFS) near Snowmass Village, Colorado ranges from ~ 140 to 77 ka, spanning all of Marine Oxygen Isotope Stage (MIS) 5. The site contains at least 52 taxa of macro- and microvertebrates, including one fish, three amphibian, four reptile, ten bird, and 34 mammal taxa. The most common vertebrate is Ambystoma tigrinum (tiger salamander), which is represented by > 22,000 elements representing the entire life cycle. The mastodon, Mammut americanum, is the most common mammal, and is documented by > 1800 skeletal elements making the ZRFS one of the largest accumulations of proboscidean remains in North America. Faunas at the ZRFS can be divided into two groups, a lake-margin group dating to ~ 140-100 ka that is dominated by woodland taxa, and a lake-center group dating to ~ 87-77 ka characterized by taxa favoring more open conditions. The change in faunal assemblages occurred between MIS 5c and 5a (vertebrates were absent from MIS 5b deposits), which were times of significant environmental change at the ZRFS. Furthermore, the ZRFS provides a well-dated occurrence of the extinct Bison latifrons, which has implications for the timing of the Rancholabrean Mammal Age in the region.

  3. Late Quaternary continental and marine sediments of northeastern Buenos Aires province (Argentina): Fossil content and paleoenvironmental interpretation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fucks, Enrique; Aguirre, Marina; Deschamps, Cecilia M.

    2005-10-01

    Abundant invertebrate and vertebrate fossil remains that exhibit excellent preservation and were collected from deposits of both continental and marine origins at Pilar (Buenos Aires, Argentina) add paleoenvironmental data from the northeastern Buenos Aires province area linked to sea-level oscillations and climate variability since approximately 120 ka BP (marine oxygen isotope stage [MOIS] 5e). Two new fossiliferous localities discovered in the Luján River Valley allow for detailed geological studies and new dating of molluscan shells and bones. The studies suggest salinity changes during the Last Interglacial (8 m above m.s.l., min. 14C>40 ka) and the mid-Holocene transgression (5 m above m.s.l., 7-3 14C ka BP) compared with the modern pattern along the adjacent littoral (Río de la Plata). The marine sequences represent the innermost boundary of the sea-level transgression in that area and contain a biogenic record (bivalves, gastropods, forams, ostracods) that indicates marginal marine environments (higher salinity than at present). Vertebrates and molluscs from the continental sequence suggest a freshwater habitat in which remains of marine fish must be allochthonous, probably incorporated by postmortem fluvial transport to the final depositional environment.

  4. A large and complete Jurassic geothermal field at Claudia, Deseado Massif, Santa Cruz, Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guido, Diego M.; Campbell, Kathleen A.

    2014-04-01

    Late Jurassic geothermal deposits at Claudia, Argentinean Patagonia, are among the largest (40 km2) and most varied in the Deseado Massif, a 60,000 km2 volcanic province hosting precious metals (Au, Ag) mineralization generated during diffuse back arc spreading and opening of the South Atlantic Ocean. Both siliceous sinter and travertine occur in the same stratigraphic sequence. Deposits range from those interpreted as fluvially reworked hydrothermal silica gels, to extensive apron terraces, to a clustering of high-temperature subaerial vent mounds. Paleoenvironmentally diagnostic textures of sinters include wavy laminated, bubble mat and nodular fabrics, and for travertines comprise fossil terracette rims, wavy laminated, bubble mat, spherulitic, oncoidal, and peloidal fabrics. Of special note is the presence of relatively large (to 25 cm high), inferred subaqueous "Conophyton" structures in travertines, which serve as analogs for some Precambrian stromatolites and imply the presence of relatively deep pools maintained by voluminous spring discharges. The Claudia geothermal field is geographically and geologically linked to the Cerro Vanguardia epithermal project (total resource of ~ 7.8 million ounces Au equivalent) via proximity, similar veins, and structural linkages, making it an especially large and relevant prospect for the region. The combined Claudia-Cerro Vanguardia hydrothermal system likely represents a fortuitous alignment of focused fluid flow and structure conducive to forming a giant epithermal ore deposit, with respect to size, ore concentration and potentially duration, in the Late Jurassic of Patagonia.

  5. X-ray Synchrotron Microtomography of a silicified Jurassic Cheirolepidiaceae (Conifer) cone: histology and morphology of Pararaucaria collinsonae sp. nov.

    PubMed

    Steart, David C; Spencer, Alan R T; Garwood, Russell J; Hilton, Jason; Munt, Martin C; Needham, John; Kenrick, Paul

    2014-01-01

    We document a new species of ovulate cone (Pararaucaria collinsonae) on the basis of silicified fossils from the Late Jurassic Purbeck Limestone Group of southern England (Tithonian Stage: ca. 145 million years). Our description principally relies on the anatomy of the ovuliferous scales, revealed through X-ray synchrotron microtomography (SRXMT) performed at the Diamond Light Source (UK). This study represents the first application of SRXMT to macro-scale silicified plant fossils, and demonstrates the significant advantages of this approach, which can resolve cellular structure over lab-based X-ray computed microtomography (XMT). The method enabled us to characterize tissues and precisely demarcate their boundaries, elucidating organ shape, and thus allowing an accurate assessment of affinities. The cones are broadly spherical (ca. 1.3 cm diameter), and are structured around a central axis with helically arranged bract/scale complexes, each of which bares a single ovule. A three-lobed ovuliferous scale and ovules enclosed within pocket-forming tissue, demonstrate an affinity with Cheirolepidiaceae. Details of vascular sclerenchyma bundles, integument structure, and the number and attachment of the ovules indicate greatest similarity to P. patagonica and P. carrii. This fossil develops our understanding of the dominant tree element of the Purbeck Fossil Forest, providing the first evidence for ovulate cheirolepidiaceous cones in Europe. Alongside recent discoveries in North America, this significantly extends the known palaeogeographic range of Pararaucaria, supporting a mid-palaeolatitudinal distribution in both Gondwana and Laurasia during the Late Jurassic. Palaeoclimatic interpretations derived from contemporaneous floras, climate sensitive sediments, and general circulation climate models indicate that Pararaucaria was a constituent of low diversity floras in semi-arid Mediterranean-type environments.

  6. X-ray Synchrotron Microtomography of a silicified Jurassic Cheirolepidiaceae (Conifer) cone: histology and morphology of Pararaucaria collinsonae sp. nov.

    PubMed Central

    Steart, David C.; Spencer, Alan R.T.; Garwood, Russell J.; Hilton, Jason; Munt, Martin C.; Needham, John

    2014-01-01

    We document a new species of ovulate cone (Pararaucaria collinsonae) on the basis of silicified fossils from the Late Jurassic Purbeck Limestone Group of southern England (Tithonian Stage: ca. 145 million years). Our description principally relies on the anatomy of the ovuliferous scales, revealed through X-ray synchrotron microtomography (SRXMT) performed at the Diamond Light Source (UK). This study represents the first application of SRXMT to macro-scale silicified plant fossils, and demonstrates the significant advantages of this approach, which can resolve cellular structure over lab-based X-ray computed microtomography (XMT). The method enabled us to characterize tissues and precisely demarcate their boundaries, elucidating organ shape, and thus allowing an accurate assessment of affinities. The cones are broadly spherical (ca. 1.3 cm diameter), and are structured around a central axis with helically arranged bract/scale complexes, each of which bares a single ovule. A three-lobed ovuliferous scale and ovules enclosed within pocket-forming tissue, demonstrate an affinity with Cheirolepidiaceae. Details of vascular sclerenchyma bundles, integument structure, and the number and attachment of the ovules indicate greatest similarity to P. patagonica and P. carrii. This fossil develops our understanding of the dominant tree element of the Purbeck Fossil Forest, providing the first evidence for ovulate cheirolepidiaceous cones in Europe. Alongside recent discoveries in North America, this significantly extends the known palaeogeographic range of Pararaucaria, supporting a mid-palaeolatitudinal distribution in both Gondwana and Laurasia during the Late Jurassic. Palaeoclimatic interpretations derived from contemporaneous floras, climate sensitive sediments, and general circulation climate models indicate that Pararaucaria was a constituent of low diversity floras in semi-arid Mediterranean-type environments. PMID:25374776

  7. Zircon U-Pb ages and petrogenesis of a tonalite-trondhjemite-granodiorite (TTG) complex in the northern Sanandaj-Sirjan zone, northwest Iran: Evidence for Late Jurassic arc-continent collision

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Azizi, Hossein; Zanjefili-Beiranvand, Mina; Asahara, Yoshihiro

    2015-02-01

    The Ghalaylan Igneous Complex is located in the northern part of the Sanandaj-Sirjan zone (SSZ) in northwest Iran. At the surface, the complex is ellipsoidal or ring-shaped. The igneous rocks, which are medium- to fine-grained, were intruded into a Jurassic metamorphic complex and are cut by younger dikes. Zircon U-Pb ages indicate that the crystallization of the main body occurred from 157.9 ± 1.6 to 155.6 ± 5.6 Ma. The igneous complex includes granodiorite, tonalite, and quartz monzonite, as well as subvolcanic to volcanic rocks such as dacite and rhyolite. The rocks have high concentrations of Al2O3 (15-19 wt.%), SiO2 (65-70 wt.%), and Sr (700-1100 ppm), high (La/Yb)N ratios (15-40), and very low concentrations of MgO (< 0.83 wt.%), Ni (< 7 ppm), and Cr (usually < 50 ppm). There is a lack of negative Eu anomalies. These geochemical features show that the rocks are similar to high-silica adakites and Archaean tonalite-trondhjemite-granodiorite (TTG) rocks. The initial ratios of 87Sr/86Sr and 143Nd/144Nd vary from 0.70430 to 0.70476 and from 0.51240 to 0.51261, respectively, values that are similar to those of primitive mantle and the bulk Earth. The chemical compositions of the igneous rocks of the complex, and their isotope ratios, differ from those of neighboring granitic bodies in the northern SSZ. Based on our results, we suggest a new geodynamic model for the development of this complex, as follows. During the generation of the Songhor-Ghorveh island arc in the Neotethys Ocean, an extensional basin, such as a back-arc, developed between the island arc and the Sanandaj-Sirjan zone (SSZ). As a consequence, basaltic magma was injected from the asthenosphere without the development of a mature oceanic crust. During arc-continent collision in the Late Jurassic, hot basaltic rocks were present beneath the SSZ at depths of 30-50 km, and the partial melting of these rocks led to the development of TTG-type magmas, forming the source of the Ghalaylan Igneous

  8. From Back-arc Drifting to Arc Accretion: the Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous Evolution of the Guerrero Terrane Recorded by a Major Provenance Change in Sandstones from the Sierra de los Cuarzos, Central Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palacios Garcia, N. B.; Martini, M.

    2014-12-01

    The Guerrero terrane composed of Middle Jurassic-Early Cretaceous arc assemblages, were drifted from the North American continental mainland during lower Early Cretaceous spreading in the Arperos back arc basin, and subsequently accreted back to the continental margin in the late Aptian. Although the accretion of the Guerrero terrane represents one of the major tectonic processes that shaped the southern North American Pacific margin, the stratigraphic record related to such a regional event was not yet recognized in central Mexico. Due to the Sierra de los Cuarzos is located just 50 km east of the Guerrero terrane suture belt, its stratigraphic record should be highly sensitive to first order tectonic changes and would record a syn-tectonic deposits related to this major event. In that study area, were identified two main Upper Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous clastic units. The Sierra de los Cuarzos formation represents the lowermost exposed stratigraphic record. Sedimentary structures, sandstones composition, and U-Pb detrital zircon ages document that the Sierra de los Cuarzos formation reflects a vigorous mass wasting along the margin of the North American continental mainland, representing the eastern side of the Arperos back arc basin. Sandstones of the Sierra de los Cuarzos formation are free from detrital contributions related to the Guerrero terrane juvenile sources, indicating that the Arperos Basin acted like an efficient sedimentological barrier that inhibited the influence of the arc massifs on the continental mainland deposits. The Sierra de los Cuarzos formation is overlain by submarine slope deposits of the Pelones formation, which mark a sudden change in the depositional conditions. Provenance analysis documents that sandstones from the Pelones formation were fed by the mafic to intermediate arc assemblages of the Guerrero terrane, as well as by quartz-rich sources of the continental mainland, suggesting that, by the time of deposition of the Pelones

  9. Associated terrestrial and marine fossils in the late-glacial Presumpscot Formation, southern Maine, USA, and the marine reservoir effect on radiocarbon ages

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Thompson, W.B.; Griggs, C.B.; Miller, N.G.; Nelson, R.E.; Weddle, T.K.; Kilian, T.M.

    2011-01-01

    Excavations in the late-glacial Presumpscot Formation at Portland, Maine, uncovered tree remains and other terrestrial organics associated with marine invertebrate shells in a landslide deposit. Buds of Populus balsamifera (balsam poplar) occurred with twigs of Picea glauca (white spruce) in the Presumpscot clay. Tree rings in Picea logs indicate that the trees all died during winter dormancy in the same year. Ring widths show patterns of variation indicating responses to environmental changes. Fossil mosses and insects represent a variety of species and wet to dry microsites. The late-glacial environment at the site was similar to that of today's Maine coast. Radiocarbon ages of 14 tree samples are 11,907??31 to 11,650??5014C yr BP. Wiggle matching of dated tree-ring segments to radiocarbon calibration data sets dates the landslide occurrence at ca. 13,520+95/??20calyr BP. Ages of shells juxtaposed with the logs are 12,850??6514C yr BP (Mytilus edulis) and 12,800??5514C yr BP (Balanus sp.), indicating a marine reservoir age of about 1000yr. Using this value to correct previously published radiocarbon ages reduces the discrepancy between the Maine deglaciation chronology and the varve-based chronology elsewhere in New England. ?? 2011 University of Washington.

  10. New method to estimate paleoprecipitation using fossil amphibians and reptiles and the middle and late Miocene precipitation gradients in Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Böhme, M.; Ilg, A.; Ossig, A.; Küchenhoff, H.

    2006-06-01

    Existing methods for determining paleoprecipitation are subject to large errors (±350 400 mm or more using mammalian proxies), or are restricted to wet climate systems due to their strong facies dependence (paleobotanical proxies). Here we describe a new paleoprecipitation tool based on an indexing of ecophysiological groups within herpetological communities. In recent communities these indices show a highly significant correlation to annual precipitation (r2 = 0.88), and yield paleoprecipitation estimates with average errors of ±250 280 mm. The approach was validated by comparison with published paleoprecipitation estimates from other methods. The method expands the application of paleoprecipitation tools to dry climate systems and in this way contributes to the establishment of a more comprehensive paleoprecipitation database. This method is applied to two high-resolution time intervals from the European Neogene: the early middle Miocene (early Langhian) and the early late Miocene (early Tortonian). The results indicate that both periods show significant meridional precipitation gradients in Europe, these being stronger in the early Langhian (threefold decrease toward the south) than in the early Tortonian (twofold decrease toward the south). This pattern indicates a strengthening of climatic belts during the middle Miocene climatic optimum due to Southern Hemisphere cooling and an increased contribution of Arctic low-pressure cells to the precipitation from the late Miocene onward due to Northern Hemisphere cooling.

  11. Trace fossils and sedimentology of a Late Cretaceous Progradational Barrier Island sequence: Bearpaw and Horseshoe Canyon Formations, Dorothy, Alberta

    SciTech Connect

    Saunders, T.D.; Pemberton, A.G.; Ranger, M.J. )

    1990-05-01

    A well-exposed example of a regressive barrier island succession crops out in the Alberta badlands along the Red Deer River Valley. In the most landward (northwestern) corner of the study area, only shallow-water and subaerial deposits are represented and are dominated by tidal inlet related facies. Seaward (southeast), water depth increases and the succession is typified by open-marine beach to offshore-related facies arranged in coarsening-upward progradational sequence. Detailed sedimentologic and ichnologic analyses of this sequence have allowed for its division into three distinct environmental zones (lower, middle, and upper). The lower zone comprises a laterally diverse assemblage of storm-influenced, lower shoreface through offshore deposits. Outcrop in the northeast is dominated by thick beds of hummocky and/or swaley cross-stratified storm sand. In the southeast, storm events have only minor influence. This lower zone contains a wide diversity of well-preserved trace fossils whose distribution appears to have been influenced by gradients in wave energy, bottom stagnation, and the interplay of storm and fair-weather processes. The middle zone records deposition across an upper shoreface environment. Here, horizontal to low-angle bedding predominates, with interspersed sets of small- and large-scale cross-bedding increasing toward the top. A characteristic feature of the upper part of this zone is the lack of biogenic structures suggesting deposition in an exposed high-energy surf zone. The upper zone records intertidal to supratidal progradation of the shoreline complex. Planar-laminated sandstone forms a distinct foreshore interval above which rhizoliths and organic material become increasingly abundant, marking transition to the backshore. A significant feature of this zone is the occurrence of an intensely bioturbated interval toward the top of the foreshore.

  12. Late Pliocene and early Pleistocene sea-level timing and amplitudes derived from fossil ostracod assemblages: Canterbury Basin, New Zealand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakamura, M.; Kusunoki, S.; Yamada, K.; Hoyanagi, K.

    2013-12-01

    IODP Expedition 317 cruise drilled cores at three shelf sites (U1353, U1354 and U1351) and one slope site (U1352), in water depths between 85 and 344 m, to understand relationships between sea-level change and sequence stratigraphy. The shelf sites are well suited to reconstruction of high-resolution sea-level fluctuations because of high sedimentation rates from the uplifting Southern Alps. We examined fossil ostracod assemblages from the shelf sites to reconstruct paleo-water depth fluctuations and their amplitudes. We identified 178 ostracod species and 70 genera from more than 160 samples. Q-mode factor analysis was performed on ostracod taxa with abundances of >3.5 % in each sample containing >50 specimens. Six varimax factors were explained 70.8% of the total variance. Paleo-water depths in each factor were calibrated with reference to recent ostracodes occurring around the sites as follows: first factor, middle shelf (50-80 m); second factor, middle to outer shelf (60-130 m); third factor, middle to outer shelf (55-115 m); fourth factor, lagoon, estuary and inner shelf (0-50 m); fifth factor, middle to outer shelf (80-200 m); sixth factor, outer shelf (130-200 m). Factor analysis of ostracod assemblages reveal at least, eight transgressive- and regressive-cycles at Site U1353, seventeen at Site U1354 and two at Site U1351. These cycles probably correspond to a subset of MIS stages between MIS M2 and MIS 40. Furthermore, amplitudes of these paleo-water-depth cycles are expected to equate to eustatic amplitudes because shelf sedimentation has been continuous and minimal subsidence can have occurred during the short time period involved. We therefore estimate that eustatic amplitudes were: 10 - 30 m from 3.1 to 2.8 Ma, ca. 100 m from 2.8 to 2.6 Ma, and 30 - 115 m from 1.8 to1.2 Ma. These amplitudes, together with the timing of the increase in amplitudes (~2.7 Ma), agree with estimates derived from oxygen isotopic records (Raymo et al., 2005), suggesting that

  13. Tracing climatic conditions during the deposition of late Cretaceous-early Eocene phosphate beds in Morocco by geochemical compositions of biogenic apatite fossils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kocsis, L.; Gheerbrant, E.; Mouflih, M.; Cappetta, H.; Yans, J.; Ulianov, A.; Amaghzaz, M.

    2012-04-01

    Morocco's Western Atlantic coast was covered by shallow seas during the late Cretaceous-early Eocene when large amount of phosphate rich sediments were deposited. This time interval envelops a major part of the last greenhouse period and gives the opportunity to study the event's characteristics in shallow water settings. These phosphate deposits are extremely rich in vertebrate fossils, while other types of fossils are rare or often poorly preserved. Hence the local stratigraphy is based on the most abundant marine vertebrate fossils, on the selachian fauna (sharks and rays). Our geochemical investigations were also carried out on these remains, though in some cases frequently found coprolites were involved as well. The main goal of our study was to test whether stable isotope compositions (δ18OPO4, δ13C) of these fossils reflect any of the hyperthermal events and/or the related perturbations in the carbon cycle during the early Paleogene (Lourens et al. 2005) and whether these geochemical signals can be used to refine the local stratigraphy. Additionally, the samples were analyzed for trace element composition in order to better assess local taphonomy and burial conditions. The samples came from two major phosphate regions, the Ouled Abdoun and the Ganntour Basins and they were collected either directly on the field during excavations (Sidi Chennane) or were obtained from museum collections with known stratigraphical position (Sidi Daoui, Ben Guerrir). The phosphate oxygen isotopic compositions of shark teeth display large range across the entire series (18.5-22.4 ) which can partly be related to the habitat of sharks. For instance the genus Striatolamnia often yielded the highest δ18O values indicating possible deep water habitat. Despite the large variation in δ18O values, a general isotope trend is apparent. In the Maastrichtian after a small negative shift, the δ18O values increase till the Danian from where the trend decrease till the Ypresian. The

  14. Triassic/Jurassic faulting patterns of Conecuh Ridge, southwest Alabama

    SciTech Connect

    Hutley, J.K.

    1985-02-01

    Two major fault systems influenced Jurassic structure and deposition on the Conecuh Ridge, southwest Alabama. Identification and dating of these fault systems are based on seismic-stratigraphic interpretation of a 7-township grid in Monroe and Conecuh Counties. Relative time of faulting is determined by fault geometry and by formation isopachs and isochrons. Smackover and Norphlet Formations, both Late Jurassic in age, are mappable seismic reflectors and are thus reliable for seismicstratigraphic dating. The earlier of the 2 fault systems is a series of horsts and grabens that trends northeast-southwest and is Late Triassic to Early Jurassic in age. The system formed in response to tensional stress associated with the opening of the Atlantic Ocean. The resulting topography was a series of northeast-southwest-trending ridges. Upper Triassic Eagle Mills and Jurassic Werner Formations were deposited in the grabens. The later fault system is also a series of horsts and grabens trending perpendicular to the first. This system was caused by tensional stress related to a pulse in the opening of the Gulf of Mexico. Faulting began in Early Jurassic and continued into Late Jurassic, becoming progressively younger basinward. At the basin margin, faulting produced a very irregular shoreline. Submerged horst blocks became centers for shoaling or carbonate buildups. Today, these blocks are exploration targets in southwest Alabama.

  15. Mid to late Holocene sea-surface temperature reconstruction using fossil corals from Kume Island, Ryukyu, Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seki, A.; Yokoyama, Y.; Suzuki, A.; Kawakubo, Y.; Okai, T.; Miyairi, Y.; Matsuzaki, H.; Namizaki, N.; Kan, H.

    2012-12-01

    The relative warmth and stability of the Holocene was punctuated by several brief cold events. Although these cold events on a global scale are widely reported, the lack of records from regions such as the East China Sea (ECS) results in an incomplete understanding of the underlying cooling mechanism. Late Quaternary climate anomaly, at around 4.2 ka evidence found in elsewhere, is a time of such abrupt climate change, and mechanisms of this event have not been understood. Here, we present a coral-based paleo-SST (sea-surface temperature) reconstruction from the ECS to unveil Holocene variability in strength of the Kuroshio Western Boundary Current and the East Asian Monsoon (EAM). Our new data confirm that cold conditions prevailed at 3.8 cal kyr BP, and were started after 4.5 cal kyr BP. The timing of this cold event is consistent with previously reported Pulleniatina Minimum Event (PME, 4.5-3.0 ka) (e.g., Ujiié and Ujiié, 1999). While PME had not been resolved seasonality, our high-resolution data clearly indicate a different seasonal response of summer and winter SST . This result provides an important insight into the mechanism of the millennium scale cold event in the ECS, where the region affected by EAM (Seki et al., 2012).

  16. The Late Pleistocene-Holocene community development in Central and SE-Europe in direct fossil record: scope of the approach, common patterns and inter-regional differences.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horacek, Ivan; Lozek, Vojen

    2010-05-01

    The information provided by modern instrumental approaches (molecular phylogeography, ancient DNA analyses, large scale radiocarbon datings etc.) refined the knowledge on Late Quaternary faunal development and range history of particular taxa in essential way. Nevertheless, the direct fossil record remains still an essential substrate in study of that topics, and to reveal all the information, that it may provide, and integrate it with the outputs of the other approaches presents one of the essential aim of the present meeting. Unfortunately, the immediate use of fossil record for the paleoecologic and paleobiogeographic inferences is often limited by its fragmentarity (both in temporal and spatial respects), taphonomic influences and/or locally specific post-sedimentary effects which all may bias it in a considerable degree. Hence, each particular record is to be carefully reexamined in respect to all factor which may bias it - unfortunately, often it is not too easy to respond that task, particularly when the record is retrived from secondary sources. It should also be remembered that the records representing narrow time slices without a robust lithostratigraphic context do not provide any information on the historical and contextual setting of the respective faunal situation. Such information that is essential for reconstructions of paleobiogeography of community development and similar locally-sensitive phenomena can only be retrived from the continuous sedimentary series which establish the sequence of particular faunal events by direct superposition. A sufficiently dense network of such series provides than a possibility of direct inter-regional comparisons and a high resolution information on the paleobiogeography of the Late Pleistocene-Holocene rearrangements of mammalian communities, local variation in history of particular species and its community context. We illustrate productivity of such approach on with aid of the fossil record obtained from

  17. Stable isotopes in yellow-bellied marmot (Marmota flaviventris) fossils reveal environmental stability in the late Quaternary of the Colorado Rocky Mountains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reynard, Linda M.; Meltzer, David J.; Emslie, Steven D.; Tuross, Noreen

    2015-03-01

    High elevation plant and animal communities are considered extremely sensitive to environmental change. We investigated an exceptional fossil record of yellow-bellied marmot (Marmota flaviventris) specimens that was recovered from Cement Creek Cave (elev. 2860 m) and ranged in age from radiocarbon background circa 49.8 cal ka BP to ~ 1 cal ka BP. We coupled isotopic and radiocarbon measurements (δ18O, δD, δ15N, δ13C, and 14C) of bone collagen from individually-AMS dated specimens of marmots to assess ecological responses by this species to environmental change over time in a high elevation basin in the Rocky Mountains of southwestern Colorado, USA. We find little change in all four isotope ratios over time, demonstrating considerable environmental stability during periods when the marmots were present. The stable ecology and the apparent persistence of the small mammal community in the cave fauna throughout the late Quaternary are in marked contrast to the changes that occurred in the large mammal community, including local extirpation and extinction, at the end of the Pleistocene.

  18. Jurassic crustal deformation in west-central part of Colorado Plateau

    SciTech Connect

    Peterson, F.

    1985-05-01

    Although the Jurassic Period is commonly thought of as a time of tectonic quiescence, updated isopach maps and new sedimentologic information indicate that it was a time of notable crustal deformation on the Colorado Plateau. A significant change in structural style occurred in Middle Jurassic time, especially during the erosion interval that produced the J-3 unconformity. Prior to late Middle Jurassic time, the region had been tilted westward and structural troughs formed in the area of the present-day Circle Cliffs uplift and in the vicinity of the Circle Cliffs and Black Mesa regions were uplifted and the nearby Henry and Kaiparowits regions began to be downwarped as troughs or basins. It cannot be determined if or how the present-day monoclines flexed during the Jurassic. However, the direction of structural tilt across these areas changed from west side down to east side down during the late Middle and early Late Jurassic. The Monument region, the largest and most persistent structural element in the region, changed from a structural bench to a positive structure in the early Late Jurassic. In most cases the positive structures subsided more slowly than adjacent downwarps. Two exceptions during the Late Jurassic are the Black Mesa and Emery uplifts. These are the only uplifts that actually rose above the level of sediment accumulation. Jurassic rocks are not known to contain significant hydrocarbon resources in this region, but their tectonic history may offer clues to the structural history of underlying Paleozoic strata, which are the primary hydrocarbon exploration targets.

  19. Occurrences of Chert in Jurassic-Cretaceous Calciturbidites (SW Turkey)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gül, Murat

    2015-10-01

    The Lycian Nappes, containing ophiolite and sedimentary rocks sequences, crop out in the southwest Turkey. The Tavas Nappe is a part of the Lycian Nappes. It includes the Lower Jurassic-Upper Cretaceous calciturbidites. Chert occurrences were observed in the lower part of this calciturbidite. These cherts can be classified on the basis of length, internal structure and host rock. Chert bands are 3.20-35.0min length and 7.0-35.0 cm thick. Chert lenses are 5.0-175.0 cm in length and 1.0-33.0 cm thick. According to its internal structure, granular chert (bladedlarge equitant quartz minerals replaced the big calcite mineral of fossil shell) and porcelanious chert (microcrystalline silica replaced micrite) have been separated. Cherts are generally associated with calcarenite-calcirudite, the others with calcilutite. Micritic calcite patches of cherts point out an uncompleted silicification. The source of silica was dominantly quartz-rich, older, basal rocks and to a lesser extent radiolarians. The coarse-grained calciturbidites act as a way for silica transportation. Some calcite veins (formed during transportation and emplacement of nappes) cut both calciturbidites and cherts. Thus, chert occurrences evolved before emplacement of nappes (the latest Cretaceous-Late Miocene period) during the epigenetic phase.

  20. "Fossil" Forecasting.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brody, Michael J.; deOnis, Ann

    2001-01-01

    Presents a density study in which students calculate the density of limestone substrate to determine if the specimen contains any fossils. Explains how to make fossils and addresses national standards. (YDS)

  1. Fossil Explorers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moran, Sean; McLaughlin, Cheryl; MacFadden, Bruce; Jacobbe, Elizabeth; Poole, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Many young learners are fascinated with fossils, particularly charismatic forms such as dinosaurs and giant sharks. Fossils provide tangible, objective evidence of life that lived millions of years ago. They also provide a timescale of evolution not typically appreciated by young learners. Fossils and the science of paleontology can, therefore,…

  2. Marquee Fossils

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clary, Renee; Wandersee, James

    2008-01-01

    Professors of an online graduate-level paleontology class developed the concept of marquee fossils--fossils that have one or more unique characteristics that capture the attention and direct observation of students. In the classroom, Marquee fossils integrate the geology, biology, and environmental science involved in the study of fossilized…

  3. Warm Middle Jurassic-Early Cretaceous high-latitude sea-surface temperatures from the Southern Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jenkyns, H. C.; Schouten-Huibers, L.; Schouten, S.; Sinninghe Damsté, J. S.

    2012-02-01

    Although a division of the Phanerozoic climatic modes of the Earth into "greenhouse" and "icehouse" phases is widely accepted, whether or not polar ice developed during the relatively warm Jurassic and Cretaceous Periods is still under debate. In particular, there is a range of isotopic and biotic evidence that favours the concept of discrete "cold snaps", marked particularly by migration of certain biota towards lower latitudes. Extension of the use of the palaeotemperature proxy TEX86 back to the Middle Jurassic indicates that relatively warm sea-surface conditions (26-30 °C) existed from this interval (∼160 Ma) to the Early Cretaceous (∼115 Ma) in the Southern Ocean, with a general warming trend through the Late Jurassic followed by a general cooling trend through the Early Cretaceous. The lowest sea-surface temperatures are recorded from around the Callovian-Oxfordian boundary, an interval identified in Europe as relatively cool, but do not fall below 25 °C. The early Aptian Oceanic Anoxic Event, identified on the basis of published biostratigraphy, total organic carbon and carbon-isotope stratigraphy, records an interval with the lowest, albeit fluctuating Early Cretaceous palaeotemperatures (∼26 °C), recalling similar phenomena recorded from Europe and the tropical Pacific Ocean. Extant belemnite δ18O data, assuming an isotopic composition of waters inhabited by these fossils of -1‰ SMOW, give palaeotemperatures throughout the Upper Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous interval that are consistently lower by ∼14 °C than does TEX86 and the molluscs likely record conditions below the thermocline. The long-term, warm climatic conditions indicated by the TEX86 data would only be compatible with the existence of continental ice if appreciable areas of high altitude existed on Antarctica, and/or in other polar regions, during the Mesozoic Era.

  4. The Earliest Case of Extreme Sexual Display with Exaggerated Male Organs by Two Middle Jurassic Mecopterans

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Qi; Shih, Chungkun; Ren, Dong

    2013-01-01

    Background Many extant male animals exhibit exaggerated body parts for display, defense or offence in sexual selection, such as male birds of paradise showing off colorful and elegant feathers and male moose and reindeers bearing large structured antlers. For insects, male rhinoceros and stag beetles have huge horn-like structure for fighting and competition and some male Leptopanorpa scorpionflies have very long abdominal terminal segments for sexual display and competition. Fossil records of insects having exaggerated body parts for sexual display are fairly rare. One example is two male holcorpids with elongate abdominal segments from sixth (A6) to eighth (A8) and enlarged male genitalia from Eocene, suggesting evolution of these characters occurred fairly late. Principal Findings We document two mecopterans with exaggerated male body parts from the late Middle Jurassic Jiulongshan Formation in northeastern China. Both have extremely extended abdominal segments from A6 to A8 and enlarged genitalia, which might have been used for sexual display and, to less extent, for fighting with other males in the competition for mates. Although Fortiholcorpa paradoxa gen. et sp. nov. and Miriholcorpa forcipata gen. et sp. nov. seem to have affinities with Holcorpidae, we deem both as Family Incertae sedis mainly due to significant differences in branching pattern of Media (M) veins and relative length of A8 for F. paradoxa, and indiscernible preservation of 5-branched M veins in hind wing for M. forcipata. Conclusions/Significance These two new taxa have extended the records of exaggerated male body parts of mecopterans for sexual display and/or selection from the Early Eocene to the late Middle Jurassic. The similar character present in some Leptopanorpa of Panorpidae suggests that the sexual display and/or sexual selection due to extremely elongated male abdominal and sexual organs outweigh the negative impact of bulky body and poor mobility in the evolutionary process

  5. Jurassic platform development, northwestern Gulf of Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Moore, C.H. Jr.

    1987-05-01

    Triassic and Early Jurassic rifting set the stage for the subsequent development of carbonate platforms in the Late Jurassic. These platforms formed along the interior margins of salt basins separated from the main ancestral Gulf of Mexico by a series of positive features. A major sea level rise, after deposition of the Louann Salt (late Callovian), drowned the interior salt basins around the margins of the Gulf of Mexico, leading to an anoxic event. Organic-rich sediments of the lower Smackover were deposited as a basin-fill sequence, forming one of the major hydrocarbon source rocks of the region. As sea level rise slowed in the late Oxfordian, carbonate production began to catch up with sea level rise along the basin margins, leading to the initial development of a rimmed carbonate platform. The platform margin was marked by high-energy ooid grainstones, while crustacean pellet muds were deposited in the platform interior. A high-energy ooid-dominated platform (upper Smackover) developed in the late Oxfordian when sea level reached a standstill. During the subsequent Kimmeridgian sea level rise, a second rimmed carbonate platform, the Haynesville, was developed. During the initial rise, grainstones were deposited on the platform margin, while the interior was dominated by evaporites (Buckner) and siliciclastics. As sea level slowed and reached a standstill, the platform margin facies extended shoreward (Gilmer) and a high-energy platform, analogous to the upper Smackover, was formed. The Smackover and Haynesville platforms of the northwestern gulf show a parallel evolution in response to cyclic changes in Upper Jurassic sea level.

  6. Filamentous microbial fossil from low-grade metamorphosed basalt in northern Chichibu belt, central Shikoku, Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sakakibara, M.; Sugawara, H.; Tsuji, T.; Ikehara, M.

    2014-05-01

    The past two decades have seen the reporting of microbial fossils within ancient oceanic basalts that could be identical to microbes within modern basalts. Here, we present new petrographic, mineralogical, and stable isotopic data for metabasalts containing filamentous structures in a Jurassic accretionary complex within the northern Chichibu Belt of the Yanadani area of central Shikoku, Japan. Mineralized filaments within these rocks are present in interstitial domains filled with calcite, pumpellyite, or quartz, and consist of iron oxide, phengite, and pumpellyite. δ13CPDB values for filament-bearing calcite within these metabasalts vary from -2.49‰ to 0.67‰. A biogenic origin for these filamentous structures is indicated by (1) the geological context of the Yanadani metabasalt, (2) the morphology of the filaments, (3) the carbon isotope composition of carbonates that host the filaments, and (4) the timing of formation of these filaments relative to the timing of low-grade metamorphism in a subduction zone. The putative microorganisms that formed these filaments thrived between eruption (Late Paleozoic) and accretion (Early Jurassic) of the basalt. The data presented here indicate that cryptoendolithic life was present within water-filled vesicles in pre-Jurassic intraplate basalts. The mineralogy of the filaments reflects the low-grade metamorphic recrystallization of authigenic microbial clays similar to those formed by the encrustation of prokaryotes in modern iron-rich environments. These findings suggest that a previously unusual niche for life is present within intraplate volcanic rocks in accretionary complexes.

  7. Early Jurassic black shales: Global anoxia or regional "Dead Zones"?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van de Schootbrugge, B.; Payne, J.; Wignall, P.

    2012-12-01

    The so-called "Schwarzer Jura" or "Black Jurassic" in Germany is informally used to designate a series of organic-rich sediments that roughly span the Early Jurassic (201.6 - 175.6 Myr), and which culminate in the Toarcian Oceanic Anoxic Event. Based on organic and inorganic geochemical as well as (micro)palaeontological data from several recently drilled cores, black shales deposited directly following the end-Triassic extinction (201.6 Ma) during the Hettangian are extremely similar to Toarcian black shales. Both events are characterized by laminated black shales that contain high amounts of the biomarker isorenieratane, a fossilized pigment derived from green sulphur bacteria. Furthermore, the two intervals show similar changes in phytoplankton assemblages from chromophyte (red) to chlorophyte (green) algae. Combined, the evidence suggests that photic zone euxinia developed repeatedly during the Early Jurassic, making wide swaths of shelf area inhospitable to benthic life. In the oceans today such areas are called "Dead Zones" and they are increasing in number and extent due to the combined effects of man-made eutrophication and global warming. During the Early Jurassic, regional anoxic events developed in response to flood basalt volcanism, which triggered global warming, increased run-off, and changes in ocean circulation. The patchiness of Early Jurassic anoxia allows comparisons to be made with present-day "Dead Zones", while at the same time ocean de-oxygenation in the past may serve to predict future perturbations in the Earth system.

  8. An evaluation of fossil tip-dating versus node-age calibrations in tetraodontiform fishes (Teleostei: Percomorphaceae).

    PubMed

    Arcila, Dahiana; Alexander Pyron, R; Tyler, James C; Ortí, Guillermo; Betancur-R, Ricardo

    2015-01-01

    Time-calibrated phylogenies based on molecular data provide a framework for comparative studies. Calibration methods to combine fossil information with molecular phylogenies are, however, under active development, often generating disagreement about the best way to incorporate paleontological data into these analyses. This study provides an empirical comparison of the most widely used approach based on node-dating priors for relaxed clocks implemented in the programs BEAST and MrBayes, with two recently proposed improvements: one using a new fossilized birth-death process model for node dating (implemented in the program DPPDiv), and the other using a total-evidence or tip-dating method (implemented in MrBayes and BEAST). These methods are applied herein to tetraodontiform fishes, a diverse group of living and extinct taxa that features one of the most extensive fossil records among teleosts. Previous estimates of time-calibrated phylogenies of tetraodontiforms using node-dating methods reported disparate estimates for their age of origin, ranging from the late Jurassic to the early Paleocene (ca. 150-59Ma). We analyzed a comprehensive dataset with 16 loci and 210 morphological characters, including 131 taxa (95 extant and 36 fossil species) representing all families of fossil and extant tetraodontiforms, under different molecular clock calibration approaches. Results from node-dating methods produced consistently younger ages than the tip-dating approaches. The older ages inferred by tip dating imply an unlikely early-late Jurassic (ca. 185-119Ma) origin for this order and the existence of extended ghost lineages in their fossil record. Node-based methods, by contrast, produce time estimates that are more consistent with the stratigraphic record, suggesting a late Cretaceous (ca. 86-96Ma) origin. We show that the precision of clade age estimates using tip dating increases with the number of fossils analyzed and with the proximity of fossil taxa to the node under

  9. A new sphenodontian (Lepidosauria: Rhynchocephalia) from the Late Triassic of Argentina and the early origin of the herbivore opisthodontians.

    PubMed

    Martínez, Ricardo N; Apaldetti, Cecilia; Colombi, Carina E; Praderio, Angel; Fernandez, Eliana; Santi Malnis, Paula; Correa, Gustavo A; Abelin, Diego; Alcober, Oscar

    2013-12-07

    Sphenodontians were a successful group of rhynchocephalian reptiles that dominated the fossil record of Lepidosauria during the Triassic and Jurassic. Although evidence of extinction is seen at the end of the Laurasian Early Cretaceous, they appeared to remain numerically abundant in South America until the end of the period. Most of the known Late Cretaceous record in South America is composed of opisthodontians, the herbivorous branch of Sphenodontia, whose oldest members were until recently reported to be from the Kimmeridgian-Tithonian (Late Jurassic). Here, we report a new sphenodontian, Sphenotitan leyesi gen. et sp. nov., collected from the Upper Triassic Quebrada del Barro Formation of northwestern Argentina. Phylogenetic analysis identifies Sphenotitan as a basal member of Opisthodontia, extending the known record of opisthodontians and the origin of herbivory in this group by 50 Myr.

  10. A new sphenodontian (Lepidosauria: Rhynchocephalia) from the Late Triassic of Argentina and the early origin of the herbivore opisthodontians

    PubMed Central

    Martínez, Ricardo N.; Apaldetti, Cecilia; Colombi, Carina E.; Praderio, Angel; Fernandez, Eliana; Malnis, Paula Santi; Correa, Gustavo A.; Abelin, Diego; Alcober, Oscar

    2013-01-01

    Sphenodontians were a successful group of rhynchocephalian reptiles that dominated the fossil record of Lepidosauria during the Triassic and Jurassic. Although evidence of extinction is seen at the end of the Laurasian Early Cretaceous, they appeared to remain numerically abundant in South America until the end of the period. Most of the known Late Cretaceous record in South America is composed of opisthodontians, the herbivorous branch of Sphenodontia, whose oldest members were until recently reported to be from the Kimmeridgian–Tithonian (Late Jurassic). Here, we report a new sphenodontian, Sphenotitan leyesi gen. et sp. nov., collected from the Upper Triassic Quebrada del Barro Formation of northwestern Argentina. Phylogenetic analysis identifies Sphenotitan as a basal member of Opisthodontia, extending the known record of opisthodontians and the origin of herbivory in this group by 50 Myr. PMID:24132307

  11. Phylogeny of Dictyoptera: Dating the Origin of Cockroaches, Praying Mantises and Termites with Molecular Data and Controlled Fossil Evidence.

    PubMed

    Legendre, Frédéric; Nel, André; Svenson, Gavin J; Robillard, Tony; Pellens, Roseli; Grandcolas, Philippe

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the origin and diversification of organisms requires a good phylogenetic estimate of their age and diversification rates. This estimate can be difficult to obtain when samples are limited and fossil records are disputed, as in Dictyoptera. To choose among competing hypotheses of origin for dictyopteran suborders, we root a phylogenetic analysis (~800 taxa, 10 kbp) within a large selection of outgroups and calibrate datings with fossils attributed to lineages with clear synapomorphies. We find the following topology: (mantises, (other cockroaches, (Cryptocercidae, termites)). Our datings suggest that crown-Dictyoptera-and stem-mantises-would date back to the Late Carboniferous (~ 300 Mya), a result compatible with the oldest putative fossil of stem-dictyoptera. Crown-mantises, however, would be much more recent (~ 200 Mya; Triassic/Jurassic boundary). This pattern (i.e., old origin and more recent diversification) suggests a scenario of replacement in carnivory among polyneopterous insects. The most recent common ancestor of (cockroaches + termites) would date back to the Permian (~275 Mya), which contradicts the hypothesis of a Devonian origin of cockroaches. Stem-termites would date back to the Triassic/Jurassic boundary, which refutes a Triassic origin. We suggest directions in extant and extinct species sampling to sharpen this chronological framework and dictyopteran evolutionary studies.

  12. Phylogeny of Dictyoptera: Dating the Origin of Cockroaches, Praying Mantises and Termites with Molecular Data and Controlled Fossil Evidence

    PubMed Central

    Legendre, Frédéric; Nel, André; Svenson, Gavin J.; Robillard, Tony; Pellens, Roseli; Grandcolas, Philippe

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the origin and diversification of organisms requires a good phylogenetic estimate of their age and diversification rates. This estimate can be difficult to obtain when samples are limited and fossil records are disputed, as in Dictyoptera. To choose among competing hypotheses of origin for dictyopteran suborders, we root a phylogenetic analysis (~800 taxa, 10 kbp) within a large selection of outgroups and calibrate datings with fossils attributed to lineages with clear synapomorphies. We find the following topology: (mantises, (other cockroaches, (Cryptocercidae, termites)). Our datings suggest that crown-Dictyoptera—and stem-mantises—would date back to the Late Carboniferous (~ 300 Mya), a result compatible with the oldest putative fossil of stem-dictyoptera. Crown-mantises, however, would be much more recent (~ 200 Mya; Triassic/Jurassic boundary). This pattern (i.e., old origin and more recent diversification) suggests a scenario of replacement in carnivory among polyneopterous insects. The most recent common ancestor of (cockroaches + termites) would date back to the Permian (~275 Mya), which contradicts the hypothesis of a Devonian origin of cockroaches. Stem-termites would date back to the Triassic/Jurassic boundary, which refutes a Triassic origin. We suggest directions in extant and extinct species sampling to sharpen this chronological framework and dictyopteran evolutionary studies. PMID:26200914

  13. Significance of Jurassic radiolarians from the Cache Creek terrane, British Columbia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cordey, Fabrice; Mortimer, N.; Dewever, Patrick; Monger, J. W. H.

    1987-12-01

    The discovery of new radiolarian localities in the western belt of the Cache Creek terrane in southern British Columbia possibly changes its upper age limit from Late Triassic to Early or Middle Jurassic. It favors a Middle Jurassic, rather than a Late Triassic, age of amalgamation for the Cache Creek terrane and Quesnellia (parts of superterrane I) in southern British Columbia. The new Jurassic ages also mean that the western Cache Creek terrane could be equivalent in age to the Bridge River Hozameen terrane in British Columbia and to terranes containing the Tethyan fusulinid Yabeina in northwest Washington and the Klamath Mountains of California.

  14. Fossil Fuels.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crank, Ron

    This instructional unit is one of 10 developed by students on various energy-related areas that deals specifically with fossil fuels. Some topics covered are historic facts, development of fuels, history of oil production, current and future trends of the oil industry, refining fossil fuels, and environmental problems. Material in each unit may…

  15. Ediacara Fossils

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Science Teacher, 2005

    2005-01-01

    Now, a research team from Virginia Tech and Nanjing Institute of Geology and Paleontology has discovered uniquely well-preserved fossil forms from 550-million-year-old rocks of the Ediacaran Period. The research appears in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The discovery of these unusually preserved fossils reveals unprecedented…

  16. Squid 'ear bones' (statoliths) from the Jurassic succession of South-west England

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hart, Malcolm; Page, Kevin; Price, Gregory; Smart, Christopher

    2015-04-01

    Squid 'ear bones' - or statoliths - are a part of the balancing organs of modern and probably most fossil squids. Over the course of the last 10 years fossil statoliths have been discovered in the Jurassic sediments of the Wessex Basin (South-west England). They are probably all related to teuthids, such as Belemnotheutis antiquus Pearce, of Callovian-Oxfordian age. Thus far, we have identified four possible 'species' of statolith that are in the process of being formally described, named and their potential relationships determined. The sediments from which these statoliths have been recorded also contain squid hooklets (onycites), otoliths (fish 'ear bones') and other microfossils (including foraminifera). All are, therefore, of marine origin. In the case of the Christian Malford and Ashton Keynes lagerstätte (of late Callovian age), the statoliths are associated with exceptional, soft-bodied preservation of squid and it may be possible to determine the parent animal of the recorded statoliths. A number of museum collections (Natural History Museum [London], Natural History Museum [Paris], Senckenberg [Frankfurt], Smithsonian Institution [Washington], etc.) are being investigated in order to trace the possible host animals for all of the recorded statoliths. Despite many thousands of samples of Cretaceous sediments being investigated for foraminifera over the past 40+ years, no statoliths have been recorded and none are known from the literature.

  17. Massive dissociation of gas hydrate during a Jurassic oceanic anoxic event

    PubMed

    Hesselbo; Grocke; Jenkyns; Bjerrum; Farrimond; Morgans Bell HS; Green

    2000-07-27

    In the Jurassic period, the Early Toarcian oceanic anoxic event (about 183 million years ago) is associated with exceptionally high rates of organic-carbon burial, high palaeotemperatures and significant mass extinction. Heavy carbon-isotope compositions in rocks and fossils of this age have been linked to the global burial of organic carbon, which is isotopically light. In contrast, examples of light carbon-isotope values from marine organic matter of Early Toarcian age have been explained principally in terms of localized upwelling of bottom water enriched in 12C versus 13C (refs 1,2,5,6). Here, however, we report carbon-isotope analyses of fossil wood which demonstrate that isotopically light carbon dominated all the upper oceanic, biospheric and atmospheric carbon reservoirs, and that this occurred despite the enhanced burial of organic carbon. We propose that--as has been suggested for the Late Palaeocene thermal maximum, some 55 million years ago--the observed patterns were produced by voluminous and extremely rapid release of methane from gas hydrate contained in marine continental-margin sediments.

  18. High-resolution ammonite, belemnite and stable isotope record from the most complete Upper Jurassic section of the Bakony Mts (Transdanubian Range, Hungary)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Főzy, István; Janssen, Nico M. M.; Price, Gregory D.

    2011-10-01

    This research focuses on the cephalopod fauna and biostratigraphy of the latest Jurassic succession of the Lókút Hill (Bakony Mts, Transdanubia, Hungary). Fossils were collected bed-by-bed from Ammonitico Rosso facies and from the subsequent Biancone type rock. The poorly preserved cephalopods from the lowermost part of the profile, immediately above the radiolarite, may represent a part of the Oxfordian stage. The rich Kimmeridgian ammonite fauna is published for the first time while the formerly illustrated Tithonian fauna is revised. All the successive Kimmeridgian and Early Tithonian Mediterranean ammonite zones can be traced. The highest documented ammonite zone is the Late Tithonian Microcanthum Zone. The beds above yielded no cephalopods. Particular attention was paid to the belemnite fauna of over 120 specimens collected under strict ammonite control. Among the belemnite faunas an Early Tithonian, an early middle Tithonian, a late middle Tithonian, and a latest Tithonian assemblage can be distinguished. Thereby, an association is distinguished in the middle Late Kimmeridgian and one that characterizes the Oxfordian-Kimmeridgian boundary beds. The main difference from previously published belemnite data appears to be that the Hungarian assemblages are impoverished with respect to contemporary faunas from Italy and Spain (Mediterranean Province). An isotopic analysis of the belemnites show that the carbon-isotope data are consistent with carbon-isotope stratigraphies of the Western Tethys and show a decrease in values towards the Jurassic-Cretaceous boundary.

  19. Geochemistry evidence for depositional settings and provenance of Jurassic argillaceous rocks of Jiyuan Basin, North China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meng, Yao; Zheng, Deshun; Li, Minglong

    2017-02-01

    This paper aims to discuss the depositional settings and provenances for the Jurassic in Jiyuan basin, North China, based on the rare earth element (REE) and trace element features of 16 Jurassic argillaceous rock samples from the Anyao, Yangshuzhuang and Ma'ao Formations, respectively. Generally, geochemical analysis results show that chondrite-normalised REE distribution patterns of all the three formations are characterised by light-REE (LREE) enrichment, moderately negative Eu anomalies, slightly negative Ce anomalies, and strong fractionation between LREE and heavy-REE (HREE). Trace element proxies V/(V + Ni), Ce anom index, Ce/La, Sr/Ba, and Sr/Cu indicate a weak oxidation-reduction environment, progressively decreasing reducibility and water depth from the bottom up during Jurassic in Jiyuan basin. Palaeoclimate varied from humid in the Early Jurassic to arid in the Middle Jurassic, corresponding with the variations of palaeoredox and palaeosalinity. The provenances of Jurassic rocks in Jiyuan basin are mainly from felsic sources related to active continental margin and continental island arc. The Early-Middle Jurassic (Anyao and Yangshuzhuang Formations) provenances are mainly derived from North Qinling and partially from the eroded recycled felsic sedimentary covers of Taihang Mountain. In the late stage of Middle Jurassic (Ma'ao Formation), Taihang Mountain has been the primary source to Jiyuan basin. We conclude that the Jurassic rocks of Jiyuan basin reveal the progressive uplift and denudation processes of the Taihang Mountain.

  20. Do fossil plants signal palaeoatmospheric carbon dioxide concentration in the geological past?

    PubMed Central

    McElwain, J. C.

    1998-01-01

    Fossil, subfossil, and herbarium leaves have been shown to provide a morphological signal of the atmospheric carbon dioxide environment in which they developed by means of their stomatal density and index. An inverse relationship between stomatal density/index and atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration has been documented for all the studies to date concerning fossil and subfossil material. Furthermore, this relationship has been demonstrated experimentally by growing plants under elevated and reducedcarbon dioxide concentrations. To date, the mechanism that controls the stomatal density response to atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration remains unknown. However, stomatal parameters of fossil plants have been successfully used as a proxy indicator of palaeo-carbon dioxide levels. This paper presents new estimates of palaeo-atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations for the Middle Eocene (Lutetian), based on the stomatal ratios of fossil Lauraceae species from Bournemouth in England. Estimates of atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations derived from stomatal data from plants of the Early Devonian, Late Carboniferous, Early Permian and Middle Jurassic ages are reviewed in the light of new data. Semi-quantitative palaeo-carbon dioxide estimates based on the stomatal ratio (a ratio of the stomatal index of a fossil plant to that of a selected nearest living equivalent) have in the past relied on the use of a Carboniferous standard. The application of a new standard based on the present-day carbon dioxide level is reported here for comparison. The resultant ranges of palaeo-carbon dioxide estimates made from standardized fossil stomatal ratio data are in good agreement with both carbon isotopic data from terrestrial and marine sources and long-term carbon cycle modelling estimates for all the time periods studied. These data indicate elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations during the Early Devonian, Middle Jurassic and Middle Eocene, and reduced

  1. The oldest known snakes from the Middle Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous provide insights on snake evolution.

    PubMed

    Caldwell, Michael W; Nydam, Randall L; Palci, Alessandro; Apesteguía, Sebastián

    2015-01-27

    The previous oldest known fossil snakes date from ~100 million year old sediments (Upper Cretaceous) and are both morphologically and phylogenetically diverse, indicating that snakes underwent a much earlier origin and adaptive radiation. We report here on snake fossils that extend the record backwards in time by an additional ~70 million years (Middle Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous). These ancient snakes share features with fossil and modern snakes (for example, recurved teeth with labial and lingual carinae, long toothed suborbital ramus of maxillae) and with lizards (for example, pronounced subdental shelf/gutter). The paleobiogeography of these early snakes is diverse and complex, suggesting that snakes had undergone habitat differentiation and geographic radiation by the mid-Jurassic. Phylogenetic analysis of squamates recovers these early snakes in a basal polytomy with other fossil and modern snakes, where Najash rionegrina is sister to this clade. Ingroup analysis finds them in a basal position to all other snakes including Najash.

  2. Jurassic paleopole controversy: Contributions from the Atlantic-bordering continents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van der Voo, Rob

    1992-11-01

    The Early-early Middle Jurassic and Early Cretaceous mean paleopoles for North America, Europe, South America, and Africa are very well grouped in appropriate continental reconstructions, but the intervening late Middle and Late Jurassic segment of the apparent polar wander path (APWP) is poorly defined and controversial. The available paleopoles, reconstructed for the partial opening of the central Atlantic Ocean, form a scattered grouping with no coherent age patterns, illustrating that they do not constitute a robust data set. Uncertainties in the reconstruction parameters between North America and Europe also play a role. However, excellent paleomagnetic results exist for tectonic elements near the margin of west Gondwana that are unlikely to have been significantly displaced with respect to cratonic Africa and South America. These results have not previously been used for APWP reconstructions, because local rotations are thought to have deflected the paleopoles in many cases. The inclinations of such results, however, can be used to determine a locus of paleopole positions. Paleopole loci for about 150 and 170 Ma were determined from results from Spain, Italy, Lebanon, and the Chilean Andes, and these were rotated with appropriate parameters to give locus intersections in North American coordinates. A late Middle Jurassic (early Callovian) best estimate of the paleopole in North American coordinates is located at about lat 70°N, long 135°E, and a Late Jurassic (Kimmeridgian) best estimate is located at about 70°N, 155°E. The resulting Jurassic-Early Cretaceous APWP follows roughly the 70th parallel, passing through the middle of the scattered individual paleopoles from the cratonic parts of the Atlantic-bordering continents.

  3. Jurassic faults of southwest Alabama and offshore areas

    SciTech Connect

    Mink, R.M.; Tew, B.H.; Bearden, B.L.; Mancini, E.A. )

    1991-03-01

    Four fault groups affecting Jurassic strata occur in the southwest and offshore Alabama areas. They include the regional basement rift trend, the regional peripheral fault trend, the Mobile graben fault system, and the Lower Mobile Bay fault system. The regional basement system rift and regional peripheral fault trends are distinct and rim the inner margin of the eastern Gulf Coastal Plain. The regional basement rift trend is genetically related to the breakup of Pangea and the opening of the Gulf of Mexico in the Late Triassic-Early Jurassic. This fault trend is thought to have formed contemporaneously with deposition of Late Triassic-Early Jurassic Eagle Mills Formation and to displace pre-Mesozoic rocks. The regional peripheral fault trend consists of a group of en echelon extensional faults that are parallel or subparallel to regional strike of Gulf Coastal Plain strata and correspond to the approximate updip limit of thick Louann Salt. Nondiapiric salt features are associated with the trend and maximum structural development is exhibited in the Haynesville-Smackover section. No hydrocarbon accumulations have been documented in the pre-Jurassic strata of southwest and offshore Alabama. Productive hydrocarbon reservoirs occur in Jurassic strata along the trends of the fault groups, suggesting a significant relationship between structural development in the Jurassic and hydrocarbon accumulation. Hydrocarbon traps are generally structural or contain a major structural component and include salt anticlines, faulted salt anticlines, and extensional fault traps. All of the major hydrocarbon accumulations are associated with movement of the Louann Salt along the regional peripheral fault trend, the Mobile graben fault system, or the Lower Mobile Bay fault system.

  4. Triassic-Jurassic mass extinction as trigger for the Mesozoic radiation of crocodylomorphs.

    PubMed

    Toljagic, Olja; Butler, Richard J

    2013-06-23

    Pseudosuchia, one of the two main clades of Archosauria (Reptilia: Diapsida), suffered a major decline in lineage diversity during the Triassic-Jurassic (TJ) mass extinction (approx. 201 Ma). Crocodylomorpha, including living crocodilians and their extinct relatives, is the only group of pseudosuchians that survived into the Jurassic. We reassess changes in pseudosuchian morphological diversity (disparity) across this time interval, using considerably larger sample sizes than in previous analyses. Our results show that metrics of pseudosuchian disparity did not change significantly across the TJ boundary, contrasting with previous work suggesting low pseudosuchian disparity in the Early Jurassic following the TJ mass extinction. However, a significant shift in morphospace occupation between Late Triassic and Early Jurassic taxa is recognized, suggesting that the TJ extinction of many pseudosuchian lineages was followed by a major and geologically rapid adaptive radiation of crocodylomorphs. This marks the onset of the spectacularly successful evolutionary history of crocodylomorphs in Jurassic and Cretaceous ecosystems.

  5. A New Basal Sauropod Dinosaur from the Middle Jurassic of Niger and the Early Evolution of Sauropoda

    PubMed Central

    Remes, Kristian; Ortega, Francisco; Fierro, Ignacio; Joger, Ulrich; Kosma, Ralf; Marín Ferrer, José Manuel; Ide, Oumarou Amadou; Maga, Abdoulaye

    2009-01-01

    Background The early evolution of sauropod dinosaurs is poorly understood because of a highly incomplete fossil record. New discoveries of Early and Middle Jurassic sauropods have a great potential to lead to a better understanding of early sauropod evolution and to reevaluate the patterns of sauropod diversification. Principal Findings A new sauropod from the Middle Jurassic of Niger, Spinophorosaurus nigerensis n. gen. et sp., is the most complete basal sauropod currently known. The taxon shares many anatomical characters with Middle Jurassic East Asian sauropods, while it is strongly dissimilar to Lower and Middle Jurassic South American and Indian forms. A possible explanation for this pattern is a separation of Laurasian and South Gondwanan Middle Jurassic sauropod faunas by geographic barriers. Integration of phylogenetic analyses and paleogeographic data reveals congruence between early sauropod evolution and hypotheses about Jurassic paleoclimate and phytogeography. Conclusions Spinophorosaurus demonstrates that many putatively derived characters of Middle Jurassic East Asian sauropods are plesiomorphic for eusauropods, while South Gondwanan eusauropods may represent a specialized line. The anatomy of Spinophorosaurus indicates that key innovations in Jurassic sauropod evolution might have taken place in North Africa, an area close to the equator with summer-wet climate at that time. Jurassic climatic zones and phytogeography possibly controlled early sauropod diversification. PMID:19756139

  6. Jurassic Park: Adventure in Learning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shams, Marcia; Boteler, Trina

    1993-01-01

    Describes using the movie "Jurassic Park" as a foundation for a middle school interdisciplinary unit involving science, math, language arts, history, and geography. Suggested books and activities are presented. (PR)

  7. Paleontology, sedimentology and paleoenvironment of a new fossiliferous locality of the Jurassic Cañadón Asfalto Formation, Chubut Province, Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gallego, Oscar F.; Cabaleri, Nora G.; Armella, Claudia; Volkheimer, Wolfgang; Ballent, Sara C.; Martínez, Sergio; Monferran, Mateo D.; Silva Nieto, Diego G.; Páez, Manuel A.

    2011-02-01

    A new Late Jurassic assemblage of “conchostracans”, ostracods, bivalves and caddisfly cases from the locality “Estancia La Sin Rumbo”, Chubut Province (Patagonia, Argentina) is recorded. The fossils occur in the upper part of an outcropping 45 m thick volcaniclastic lacustrine sequence of yellowish tuffs and tuffites of the Puesto Almada Member, which is the upper member of the Cañadón Asfalto Formation with U/Pb age of 161 ± 3 Ma. The sequence represents one sedimentary cycle composed of a (lower) hemicycle of expansion and a (higher) hemicycle of contraction of the water body. The invertebrates lived in small freshwater bodies during the periods of expansion of the lake. The occurrence of a great number of small spinicaudatans, associated with mud-cracks, is evidence of dry climatic conditions and suggests several local mortality events. The spinicaudatan record of the fushunograptid-orthestheriid (component of the Eosestheriopsis dianzhongensis fauna) and the presence of Congestheriella rauhuti Gallego and Shen, suggest a Late Jurassic (Oxfordian to Tithonian) age. Caddisfly cases are recorded for the first time in the Cañadón Asfalto Basin.

  8. Evidence for a Mid-Jurassic Adaptive Radiation in Mammals.

    PubMed

    Close, Roger A; Friedman, Matt; Lloyd, Graeme T; Benson, Roger B J

    2015-08-17

    A series of spectacular discoveries have transformed our understanding of Mesozoic mammals in recent years. These finds reveal hitherto-unsuspected ecomorphological diversity that suggests that mammals experienced a major adaptive radiation during the Middle to Late Jurassic. Patterns of mammalian macroevolution must be reinterpreted in light of these new discoveries, but only taxonomic diversity and limited aspects of morphological disparity have been quantified. We assess rates of morphological evolution and temporal patterns of disparity using large datasets of discrete characters. Rates of morphological evolution were significantly elevated prior to the Late Jurassic, with a pronounced peak occurring during the Early to Middle Jurassic. This intense burst of phenotypic innovation coincided with a stepwise increase in apparent long-term standing diversity and the attainment of maximum disparity, supporting a "short-fuse" model of early mammalian diversification. Rates then declined sharply, and remained significantly low until the end of the Mesozoic, even among therians. This supports the "long-fuse" model of diversification in Mesozoic therians. Our findings demonstrate that sustained morphological innovation in Triassic stem-group mammals culminated in a global adaptive radiation of crown-group members during the Early to Middle Jurassic.

  9. Fossil Horses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    MacFadden, Bruce J.

    1994-06-01

    The family Equidae have an extensive fossil record spanning the past 58 million years, and the evolution of the horse has frequently been used as a classic example of long-term evolution. In recent years, however, there have been many important discoveries of fossil horses, and these, in conjunction with such new methods as cladistics, and techniques such as precise geochronology, have allowed us to achieve a much greater understanding of the evolution and biology of this important group. This book synthesizes the large body of data and research relevant to an understanding of fossil horses from several disciplines including biology, geology and paleontology. Using horses as the central theme, the author weaves together in the text such topics as modern geochronology, paleobiogeography, climate change, evolution and extinction, functional morphology, and population biology during the Cenozoic period. This book will be exciting reading for researchers and graduate students in vertebrate paleontology, evolution, and zoology.

  10. The Jurassic section along McElmo Canyon in southwestern Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    O'Sullivan, Robert B.

    1997-01-01

    In McElmo Canyon, Jurassic rocks are 1500-1600 ft thick. Lower Jurassic rocks of the Glen Canyon Group include (in ascending order) Wingate Sandstone, Kayenta Formation and Navajo Sandstone. Middle Jurassic rocks are represented by the San Rafael Group, which includes the Entrada Sandstone and overlying Wanakah Formation. Upper Jurassic rocks comprise the Junction Creek Sandstone overlain by the Morrison Formation. The Burro Canyon Formation, generally considered to be Lower Cretaceous, may be Late Jurassic in the McElmo Canyon area and is discussed with the Jurassic. The Upper Triassic Chinle Formation in the subsurface underlies, and the Upper Cretaceous Dakota Sandstone overlies, the Jurassic section. An unconformity is present at the base of the Glen Canyon Group (J-0), at the base of the San Rafael Group (J-2), and at the base of the Junction Creek Sandstone (J-5). Another unconformity of Cretaceous age is at the base of the Dakota Sandstone. Most of the Jurassic rocks consist of fluviatile, lacustrine and eolian deposits. The basal part of the Entrada Sandstone and the Wanakah Formation may be of marginal marine origin.

  11. The geographic and phylogenetic position of sauropod dinosaurs from the Kota formation (Early Jurassic) of India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gillette, David D.

    2003-03-01

    The earliest sauropods are the Late Triassic Isanosaurus from Thailand, the Early Jurassic Barapasaurus and Kotasaurus from the Kota Formation of the Pranhita-Godavari Basin of India and Vulcanodon from Zimbabwe, and a variety of Middle Jurassic genera from many localities in Gondwana and Laurasia except North America. These early sauropod genera are related, but their phylogenetic positions remain unresolved. Sauropods originated in Laurasia (Thailand and vicinity) or Pangea (broadly, Thailand, China, India), with at least three additional steps involving expansion and diversification through the Middle Jurassic.

  12. Parasites in the fossil record: a Cretaceous fauna with isopod-infested decapod crustaceans, infestation patterns through time, and a new ichnotaxon.

    PubMed

    Klompmaker, Adiël A; Artal, Pedro; van Bakel, Barry W M; Fraaije, René H B; Jagt, John W M

    2014-01-01

    Parasites are common in modern ecosystems and are also known from the fossil record. One of the best preserved and easily recognisable examples of parasitism in the fossil record concerns isopod-induced swellings in the branchial chamber of marine decapod crustaceans. However, very limited quantitative data on the variability of infestation percentages at the species, genus, and family levels are available. Here we provide this type of data for a mid-Cretaceous (upper Lower Cretaceous, upper Albian) reef setting at Koskobilo, northern Spain, on the basis of 874 specimens of anomurans and brachyurans. Thirty-seven specimens (4.2%), arranged in ten species, are infested. Anomurans are more heavily infested than brachyurans, variability can be high within genera, and a relationship may exist between the number of specimens and infestation percentage per taxon, possibly suggesting host-specificity. We have also investigated quantitative patterns of infestation through geological time based on 88 infested species (25 anomurans, 55 brachyurans, seven lobsters, and one shrimp), to show that the highest number of infested species can be found in the Late Jurassic, also when corrected for the unequal duration of epochs. The same Late Jurassic peak is observed for the percentage of infested decapod species per epoch. This acme is caused entirely by infested anomurans and brachyurans. Biases (taphonomic and otherwise) and causes of variability with regard to the Koskobilo assemblage and infestation patterns through time are discussed. Finally, a new ichnogenus and -species, Kanthyloma crusta, are erected to accommodate such swellings or embedment structures (bioclaustrations).

  13. The early eukaryotic fossil record.

    PubMed

    Javaux, Emmanuelle J

    2007-01-01

    The Precambrian era records the evolution of the domain Eucarya. Although the taxonomy of fossils is often impossible to resolve beyond the level of domain, their morphology and chemistry indicate the evolution of major biological innovations. The late Archean record for eukaryotes is limited to trace amounts of biomarkers. Morphological evidence appears in late Paleoproterozoic and early Mesoproterozoic (1800-1300 Ma) rocks. The moderate diversity of preservable eukaryotic organisms includes cell walls without surface ornament (but with complex ultrastructure), with regularly distributed surface ornamentation, and with irregularly or regularly arranged processes. Collectively, these fossils suggest that eukaryotes with flexible membranes and cytoskeletons existed in mid-Proterozoic oceans. The late Mesoproterozoic-early Neoproterozoic (1300-750 Ma) is a time of diversification and evolution when direct evidence for important biological innovations occurs in the fossil record such as multicellularity, sex, photosynthesis, biomineralization, predation, and heterotrophy. Members of extant clades can be recognized and include bangiophyte red algae, xanthophyte algae, cladophorale green algae, euglyphid, lobose, and filose amoebae and possible fungi. In the late Neoproterozoic, besides more diversification of ornamented fossils, florideophyte red algae and brown algae diversify, and animals take the stage. The record of biological innovations documented by the fossils shows that eukaryotes had evolved most cytological and molecular complexities very early in the Proterozoic but environmental conditions delayed their diversification within clades until oxygen level and predation pressure increased significantly.

  14. Sea-level changes in the Lopingian (late Permian) of the northwestern Tethys and their effects on the terrestrial palaeoenvironments, biota and fossil preservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kustatscher, Evelyn; Bernardi, Massimo; Petti, Fabio Massimo; Franz, Matthias; van Konijnenburg-van Cittert, Johanna H. A.; Kerp, Hans

    2017-01-01

    The Lopingian is characterised by an aridisation trend and substantial sea-level changes. Hence, the fossil record of this time interval is strongly affected by ecological and taphonomic factors inherent to these long-term processes. Integrated sedimentological and palaeontological studies in the Bletterbach Gorge (Dolomites, N-Italy) allow discrimination between biological signals and preservational bias, shedding light on the effect of sea-level changes on the preservation potential of terrestrial associations of plant remains and tetrapod footprints. Flora A, composed of more humid elements with larger leaf/shoot fragments, appears close to a sea-level highstand and is interpreted as a (par-)autochthonous assemblage of an intrazonal riparian vegetation. Flora B, dominated by xerophytic elements documented by smaller fragments, corresponds to an allochthonous assemblage of an azonal vegetation preserved in floodplain fines of a progradational fluvial plain associated with a sea-level lowstand. The distribution of vertebrate footprints mirrors that of the plant-bearing horizons and their abundance and morphological diversity strongly increases in correspondence with marine transgressions. This could be related to a more diverse fauna (more complex food-web related to more humid conditions) or more favourable taphonomic conditions. However, the most diversified fauna, recorded during the early phases of the regressive phase, is in our interpretation best explained by the rapid burial of footprints due to the increasing energy. Our study provides an explanation for the change in distribution and preservation of plant and animal fossils in the Bletterbach section and shows how the fossil content of continental successions is deeply influenced by sea-level changes.

  15. Diversity and paleogeographic distribution of Early Jurassic plesiosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vincent, Peggy; Suan, Guillaume

    2010-05-01

    Early Jurassic plesiosaurs, a group of extinct marine reptiles, were one of the first groups to be described in the history of vertebrate paleontology. Nevertheless, the paleogeographic distribution and the taxonomic diversity of these forms are still unclear, particularly because most descriptions and taxonomic attributions were realized during the mid 19th to early 20th century. Here we investigate the paleodiversity and paleogeographic distribution of Early Jurassic plesiosaurs using an extensive taxonomic and anatomical revision of most known Early Jurassic specimens. We also present an examination of the biostratigraphic and sedimentological framework of deposits in which these specimens were discovered, in order to decipher whether their fossil record reflects primary paleobiological trends or taphonomic/discovery biases. Early Jurassic Plesiosaur diversity appears to reach its maximum during the Toarcian (falciferum-bifrons ammonite zones). Nevertheless, the inclusion of ghost lineages into the diversity curves indicates that this pattern likely reflects discovery and taphonomical biases rather than primary biodiversity trends. Indeed, most strata where numerous plesiosaurs species were discovered correspond to sediments that were deposited under poorly-oxygenated conditions and exploited at least in a semi-industrial way during the 1800's-1950's. The Lower Jurassic fossiliferous localities that yielded identifiable plesiosaur species are only found in Western Europe (England, Germany, and France). In Europe, the Toarcian stage is the only interval where more than one fossiliferous locality is known (the Hettangian, Sinemurian and Pliensbachian stages being each represented by only one locality where specimens are identifiable at the species level). The different Toarcian fossiliferous sites of Europe do not bear any single common taxon, suggesting a high degree of endemism in Early Jurassic plesiosaurs. Nevertheless, these sites are fundamentally

  16. A new stem turtle from the Middle Jurassic of Scotland: new insights into the evolution and palaeoecology of basal turtles.

    PubMed

    Anquetin, Jérémy; Barrett, Paul M; Jones, Marc E H; Moore-Fay, Scott; Evans, Susan E

    2009-03-07

    The discovery of a new stem turtle from the Middle Jurassic (Bathonian) deposits of the Isle of Skye, Scotland, sheds new light on the early evolutionary history of Testudinata. Eileanchelys waldmani gen. et sp. nov. is known from cranial and postcranial material of several individuals and represents the most complete Middle Jurassic turtle described to date, bridging the morphological gap between basal turtles from the Late Triassic-Early Jurassic and crown-group turtles that diversify during the Late Jurassic. A phylogenetic analysis places the new taxon within the stem group of Testudines (crown-group turtles) and suggests a sister-group relationship between E. waldmani and Heckerochelys romani from the Middle Jurassic of Russia. Moreover, E. waldmani also demonstrates that stem turtles were ecologically diverse, as it may represent the earliest known aquatic turtle.

  17. Depositional history of Jurassic rocks in the area of the Powder River basin, northeastern Wyoming and southeastern Montana

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-01-01

    This paper summarizes the history of clastic sedimentation in the eastern part of the middle Western Interior during the Middle and Late Jurassic. Fourteen lithostratigraphic units are discussed in relation to five separate marine inundations and six intervening erosional events.

  18. New model of succession of Middle and Late Pennsylvanian fossil communities in north Texas, Mid-Continent, and Appalachians with implications on black shale controversy

    SciTech Connect

    Boardman, D.R. II; Yancey, T.E.; Mapes, R.H.; Malinky, J.M.

    1983-03-01

    A new model for the succession of Pennsylvanian fossil communities, preserved in cyclothems, is proposed on the basis of more than 200 fossil localities in the Mid-Continent, Appalachians, and north Texas. Early models for Mid-Continent cyclothems placed the black shales in shallow water, with maximum transgression at the fusulinid-bearing zone in the overlying limestone. The most recent model proposed that the black phosphatic shales, which commonly occur between two subtidal carbonates, are widespread and laterally continuous over great distances and represent maximum transgression. The black phosphatic shales contain: ammonoids; inarticulate brachiopods; radiolarians; conularids; shark material and abundant and diverse conodonts. The black shales grade vertically and laterally into dark gray-black shales which contain many of the same pelagic and epipelagic forms found in the phosphatic black shales. This facies contains the deepest water benthic community. Most of these forms are immature, pyritized, and generally are preserved as molds. The dark gray-black facies grades into a medium gray shale facies which contains a mature molluscan fauna. The medium gray shale grades into a lighter gray facies, which is dominated by brachiopods, crinoids, and corals, with occasional bivalves and gastropods. (These facies are interpreted as being a moderate to shallow depth shelf community). The brachiopid-crinoid community is succeeded by shallow water communities which may have occupied shoreline, lagoonal, bay, interdeltaic, or shallow prodeltaic environments.

  19. Yuhania: a unique angiosperm from the Middle Jurassic of Inner Mongolia, China

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Zhong-Jian; Wang, Xin

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Despite increasing claims of pre-Cretaceous angiosperms, whether there really are angiosperms in the Jurassic is apparently still an open question for many people before further evidence is available. This question can only be answered by studying more Jurassic plant fossils. Here we report a fossil angiosperm, Yuhania daohugouensis gen. et sp. nov, from the Middle Jurassic of Inner Mongolia, China. The plant includes connected stem, leaves, flowers, aggregate fruits, fruitlets, and seeds within fruitlets. The leaves are helically arranged along the curving stem, linear in shape, with 5–6 parallel veins. The aggregate fruit is pedicellate, composed of over 20 carpels/fruitlets helically arranged. Each fruitlet encloses a seed. The reproductive organs in various stages are found in the same plant, allowing us to understand the development of Yuhania. The occurrence of Yuhania in the Middle Jurassic re-confirms the Jurassic history for angiosperms that has been suggested by other independent research and adds to the on-going study on the early evolution of angiosperms.

  20. Direct chemical evidence for eumelanin pigment from the Jurassic period

    PubMed Central

    Glass, Keely; Ito, Shosuke; Wilby, Philip R.; Sota, Takayuki; Nakamura, Atsushi; Bowers, C. Russell; Vinther, Jakob; Dutta, Suryendu; Summons, Roger; Briggs, Derek E. G.; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Simon, John D.

    2012-01-01

    Melanin is a ubiquitous biological pigment found in bacteria, fungi, plants, and animals. It has a diverse range of ecological and biochemical functions, including display, evasion, photoprotection, detoxification, and metal scavenging. To date, evidence of melanin in fossil organisms has relied entirely on indirect morphological and chemical analyses. Here, we apply direct chemical techniques to categorically demonstrate the preservation of eumelanin in two > 160 Ma Jurassic cephalopod ink sacs and to confirm its chemical similarity to the ink of the modern cephalopod, Sepia officinalis. Identification and characterization of degradation-resistant melanin may provide insights into its diverse roles in ancient organisms. PMID:22615359

  1. Direct chemical evidence for eumelanin pigment from the Jurassic period.

    PubMed

    Glass, Keely; Ito, Shosuke; Wilby, Philip R; Sota, Takayuki; Nakamura, Atsushi; Bowers, C Russell; Vinther, Jakob; Dutta, Suryendu; Summons, Roger; Briggs, Derek E G; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Simon, John D

    2012-06-26

    Melanin is a ubiquitous biological pigment found in bacteria, fungi, plants, and animals. It has a diverse range of ecological and biochemical functions, including display, evasion, photoprotection, detoxification, and metal scavenging. To date, evidence of melanin in fossil organisms has relied entirely on indirect morphological and chemical analyses. Here, we apply direct chemical techniques to categorically demonstrate the preservation of eumelanin in two > 160 Ma Jurassic cephalopod ink sacs and to confirm its chemical similarity to the ink of the modern cephalopod, Sepia officinalis. Identification and characterization of degradation-resistant melanin may provide insights into its diverse roles in ancient organisms.

  2. Fossilization of nanobes studied by transmission electron microscopy and constraints related to their population - recent and late quaternary reefbanks (San Salvador Island, the Bahamas; Heron Island, Australia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hladil, J.; Gemperle, A.; Carew, J. L.; Bosak, P.; Slavik, L.; Pruner, P.; Charvatova, K.; Mylroie, J. E.; Jell, J. S.

    2003-04-01

    SEM analyses of rocks from Blow Hole Cave and The Gulf sections (San Salvador Island, Bahamas) found that ca 90-95% of peloids (and minor parts of other particles and cements) are substantially rebuilt into tiny corpuscles of ovoid, rotund cylindrical or slightly bent shapes (50-80 × 60-120 nm). About 20-30% of them form short and branched chains. These fabrics resemble `accumulations of ant eggs', have 40-60% fine porosity, correspond to better morpho-definitions of nanobes (cons. by R.L. Folk, 2002), and put a new light on micritization processes. The rocks strongly rebuilt by nanobes negatively correlate with magnetic susceptibility, but slightly contribute to NGR (uranium, gamma-ray spectrometry). In spite of strongly negative correlation to magnetic horizons, the nanobes are also present there, but to a lesser extent. The suspensions with nanobes (extracted by pump from the pores of rocks preserved in glutaraldehyde) exhibit a variety of preservation stages - from amorphous organics to completely fossilized corpuscles (studied by TEM). Early stages of fossilization are characterized by a gradually increasing amount of very fine crystalline inclusions, which are triangular to tetragonal in shape, and 3-15 nm long (mean size ˜ 6 nm). The TEM diffractograms provided data about face-centered cubic structures of B1 type (NaCl-like), with strongest 2nd and 3rd reflections on 0.240 and 0.170 nm and mean lattice parameter of 0.4813 nm. The substance was clearly identified as CaO. The difference to 0.4802 nm (ICDD data for pure CaO) is explained by effects of impurities Sr (+) > Fe, Mn (-). The number of CaO inclusions fluctuates from a few to 5 × 104 / μ {m3}. The CaO nucleation is possible in natural necrotic high-pH low-Eh organic coagulates; but presence of glutaraldehyde can facilitate the process. Other fossilization stages show unstable amorphous to crystalline calcium carbonate, homogeneous aragonite and calcite, and calcite replacing aragonite along sharp

  3. Sub-fossil beetle assemblages associated with the "mammoth fauna" in the Late Pleistocene localities of the Ural Mountains and West Siberia.

    PubMed

    Zinovyev, Evgeniy

    2011-01-01

    The distribution of beetles at the end of the Middle Pleninglacial (=terminal Quaternary) was examined based on sub-fossil material from the Ural Mountains and Western Siberia, Russia. All relevant localities of fossil insects have similar radiocarbon dates, ranging between 33,000 and 22,000 C14 years ago. Being situated across the vast territory from the southern Ural Mountains in the South to the middle Yamal Peninsula in the North, they allow latitudinal changes in beetle assemblages of that time to be traced. These beetles lived simultaneously with mammals of the so-called "mammoth fauna" with mammoth, bison, and wooly rhinoceros, the often co-occurring mega-mammalian bones at some of the sites being evidence of this. The beetle assemblages found between 59° and 57°N appear to be the most interesting. Their bulk is referred to as a "mixed" type, one which includes a characteristic combination of arcto-boreal, boreal, steppe and polyzonal species showing no analogues among recent insect complexes. These peculiar faunas seem to have represented a particular zonal type, which disappeared since the end of the Last Glaciation to arrive here with the extinction of the mammoth biota. In contrast, on the sites lying north of 60°N, the beetle communities were similar to modern sub-arctic and arctic faunas, yet with the participation of some sub-boreal steppe components, such as Poecilus ravus Lutshnik and Carabus sibiricus Fischer-Waldheim. This information, when compared with our knowledge of synchronous insect faunas from other regions of northern Eurasia, suggests that the former distribution of beetles in this region could be accounted for both by palaeo-environmental conditions and the impact of grazing by large ruminant mammals across the so-called "mammoth savannas".

  4. Sub-fossil beetle assemblages associated with the “mammoth fauna” in the Late Pleistocene localities of the Ural Mountains and West Siberia

    PubMed Central

    Zinovyev, Evgeniy

    2011-01-01

    Abstract The distribution of beetles at the end of the Middle Pleninglacial (=terminal Quaternary) was examined based on sub-fossil material from the Ural Mountains and Western Siberia, Russia. All relevant localities of fossil insects have similar radiocarbon dates, ranging between 33,000 and 22,000 C14 years ago. Being situated across the vast territory from the southern Ural Mountains in the South to the middle Yamal Peninsula in the North, they allow latitudinal changes in beetle assemblages of that time to be traced. These beetles lived simultaneously with mammals of the so-called “mammoth fauna” with mammoth, bison, and wooly rhinoceros, the often co-occurring mega-mammalian bones at some of the sites being evidence of this. The beetle assemblages found between 59° and 57°N appear to be the most interesting. Their bulk is referred to as a “mixed” type, one which includes a characteristic combination of arcto-boreal, boreal, steppe and polyzonal species showing no analogues among recent insect complexes. These peculiar faunas seem to have represented a particular zonal type, which disappeared since the end of the Last Glaciation to arrive here with the extinction of the mammoth biota. In contrast, on the sites lying north of 60°N, the beetle communities were similar to modern sub-arctic and arctic faunas, yet with the participation of some sub-boreal steppe components, such as Poecilus ravus Lutshnik and Carabus sibiricus Fischer-Waldheim. This information, when compared with our knowledge of synchronous insect faunas from other regions of northern Eurasia, suggests that the former distribution of beetles in this region could be accounted for both by palaeo-environmental conditions and the impact of grazing by large ruminant mammals across the so-called “mammoth savannas”. PMID:21738409

  5. High diversity, low disparity and small body size in plesiosaurs (Reptilia, Sauropterygia) from the Triassic-Jurassic boundary.

    PubMed

    Benson, Roger B J; Evans, Mark; Druckenmiller, Patrick S

    2012-01-01

    Invasion of the open ocean by tetrapods represents a major evolutionary transition that occurred independently in cetaceans, mosasauroids, chelonioids (sea turtles), ichthyosaurs and plesiosaurs. Plesiosaurian reptiles invaded pelagic ocean environments immediately following the Late Triassic extinctions. This diversification is recorded by three intensively-sampled European fossil faunas, spanning 20 million years (Ma). These provide an unparalleled opportunity to document changes in key macroevolutionary parameters associated with secondary adaptation to pelagic life in tetrapods. A comprehensive assessment focuses on the oldest fauna, from the Blue Lias Formation of Street, and nearby localities, in Somerset, UK (Earliest Jurassic: 200 Ma), identifying three new species representing two small-bodied rhomaleosaurids (Stratesaurus taylori gen et sp. nov.; Avalonnectes arturi gen. et sp. nov) and the most basal plesiosauroid, Eoplesiosaurus antiquior gen. et sp. nov. The initial radiation of plesiosaurs was characterised by high, but short-lived, diversity of an archaic clade, Rhomaleosauridae. Representatives of this initial radiation were replaced by derived, neoplesiosaurian plesiosaurs at small-medium body sizes during a more gradual accumulation of morphological disparity. This gradualistic modality suggests that adaptive radiations within tetrapod subclades are not always characterised by the initially high levels of disparity observed in the Paleozoic origins of major metazoan body plans, or in the origin of tetrapods. High rhomaleosaurid diversity immediately following the Triassic-Jurassic boundary supports the gradual model of Late Triassic extinctions, mostly predating the boundary itself. Increase in both maximum and minimum body length early in plesiosaurian history suggests a driven evolutionary trend. However, Maximum-likelihood models suggest only passive expansion into higher body size categories.

  6. Pennsylvanian to Jurassic eolian transportation systems in the western United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Peterson, F.

    1988-01-01

    The direction of sediment transport in eolian sandstones of Pennsylvanian to Jurassic age was interpreted from crossbedding resultants (vector means) obtained from studies of eolian rocks in the western U.S., supplemented by data from the few eolian units of eastern North America. These were compiled from the published or unpublished (theses) literature, from unpublished field data contributed by colleagues, or from measurements made for this study. In addition, new paleogeographic maps were compiled to evaluate the influence of geographic features on the atmospheric circulation patterns that are inferred from the crossbedding studies. Regionally, the crossbedding indicates northeasterly, northerly, or northwesterly winds (present coordinates) from Pennsylvanian through most of Middle Jurassic time. A rather abrupt change in wind directions occurred in late Middle Jurassic time (late part of the Callovian Age) when westerly wind patterns developed. By the Late Jurassic the winds shifted to southwesterly. Calculations of the consistency factor (vector mean strength) made from region-wide analyses of the resultants indicate fairly unidirectional winds from the Pennsylvanian through the Early Jurassic. Middle Jurassic circulation was more varied, judging from crossbedding studies in the lower part of the Entrada Sandstone. Crossbedding in Upper Jurassic eolian rocks of Wyoming and South Dakota yielded a random pattern but Upper Jurassic rocks farther south on the Colorado Plateau and adjoining areas show a return to a fairly unidirectional pattern. Comparing the resultants with their reconstructed paleogeographic setting shows surprisingly little influence of major geographic features on overall circulation patterns. However, the greatest amount of local variation occurred at or near highly indented shorelines where the temperature contrast between land and water produces local wind currents that may vary appreciably from regional circulation patterns. Although they

  7. Pennsylvanian to Jurassic eolian transportation systems in the western United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peterson, Fred

    1988-04-01

    The direction of sediment transport in eolian sandstones of Pennsylvanian to Jurassic age was interpreted from crossbedding resultants (vector means) obtained from studies of eolian rocks in the western U.S., supplemented by data from the few eolian units of eastern North America. These were compiled from the published or unpublished (theses) literature, from unpublished field data contributed by colleagues, or from measurements made for this study. In addition, new paleogeographic maps were compiled to evaluate the influence of geographic features on the atmospheric circulation patterns that are inferred from the crossbedding studies. Regionally, the crossbedding indicates northeasterly, northerly, or northwesterly winds (present coordinates) from Pennsylvanian through most of Middle Jurassic time. A rather abrupt change in wind directions occurred in late Middle Jurassic time (late part of the Callovian Age) when westerly wind patterns developed. By the Late Jurassic the winds shifted to southwesterly. Calculations of the consistency factor (vector mean strength) made from region-wide analyses of the resultants indicate fairly unidirectional winds from the Pennsylvanian through the Early Jurassic. Middle Jurassic circulation was more varied, judging from crossbedding studies in the lower part of the Entrada Sandstone. Crossbedding in Upper Jurassic eolian rocks of Wyoming and South Dakota yielded a random pattern but Upper Jurassic rocks farther south on the Colorado Plateau and adjoining areas show a return to a fairly unidirectional pattern. Comparing the resultants with their reconstructed paleogeographic setting shows surprisingly little influence of major geographic features on overall circulation patterns. However, the greatest amount of local variation occurred at or near highly indented shorelines where the temperature contrast between land and water produces local wind currents that may vary appreciably from regional circulation patterns. Although they

  8. The first elateroid beetles (Coleoptera: Polyphaga: Elateroidea) from the Upper Jurassic of Australia.

    PubMed

    Oberprieler, Rolf G; Ashman, Lauren G; Frese, Michael; Ślipiński, Adam

    2016-08-03

    The first elateroid fossils from the Upper Jurassic Talbragar Fish Bed in Australia are described and illustrated. Wongaroo amplipectorale gen. et sp. n., based on two specimens, is placed in the family Cerophytidae due to its convex, posteriorly weakly angled and laterally carinate pronotum obscuring the head in dorsal view, its relatively long, pointed elytra and slender legs, its 9-striate elytra with deep basal pits and the absence of metacoxal plates. Beattieellus jurassicus gen. et sp. n., described from one specimen, possesses the acutely angled pronotum without a carina on the posterolateral angles and the ventral click apparatus typical of Eucnemidae and is classified in this family. Assignment of it to a eucnemid subfamily is impossible because of the insufficient preservation of relevant characters in the fossil. Four other elateroid fossils, possibly representing eucnemids and elaterids, are illustrated and briefly described but not named, due to their insufficient preservation. These fossils represent the first of their kind in Australia and in the Southern Hemisphere, and Beattieellus is also the oldest eucnemid fossil known and extends the fossil record of Eucnemidae into the Upper Jurassic. The discovery of elateroid fossils in the Talbragar Fish Bed adds to the coleopteran diversity of this ancient lake ecosystem, indicating that it was well wooded and provided suitable habitats of rotten wood for the development of the larvae of these taxa.

  9. The age for the fossil-bearing Tabbowa beds in Sri Lanka

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, S. C.; Dassanayake, S.; Wang, J.

    2014-12-01

    Well-preserved terrestrial fossils, mainly including conifers, cycads and ferns, were discovered from the Tabbowa beds in northwestern Sri Lanka. The high diversity and abundance of plants and insects from these Jurassic sediments provide a unique window to understand floral evolution and plant-insect co-evolution in the Mesozoic. For example, unearthed fossils from the Tabbowa beds indicate that leaf feeding and dwelling insects played a significant role in the Jurassic ecosystem. For another example, feeding and chewing marks on leaves allow studying insect behavior and paleo-ecology. Additionally, the recent discoveries of Otozamites latiphyllus and Otozamites tabbowensis from these sediments provide evidence that Bennettitales, an extinct order of seed plants, widely spread in the Gondwana during the Jurassic period. Although most fossils are yet to be well studied, and only few of the fossil occurrences have been published in western journals, plant fossils from the Tabbowa beds have great potential for substantially increasing our knowledge of Jurassic terrestrial ecosystems. The fossil-bearing Tabbowa beds are mainly composed of sandstone, siltstone, and mudstone with occasional thin bands of nodular limestone. Until now, radio-isotopic age determinations for the fossil-rich Tabbowa beds are lacking. In this study, we investigate the geological and geochronological setting of this area by dating detrital zircons from the Tabbowa beds. The age data will allow testing several hypotheses regarding the plant evolution, the basin development of this region.

  10. Applying microCT and 3D visualization to Jurassic silicified conifer seed cones: A virtual advantage over thin-sectioning1

    PubMed Central

    Gee, Carole T.

    2013-01-01

    • Premise of the study: As an alternative to conventional thin-sectioning, which destroys fossil material, high-resolution X-ray computed tomography (also called microtomography or microCT) integrated with scientific visualization, three-dimensional (3D) image segmentation, size analysis, and computer animation is explored as a nondestructive method of imaging the internal anatomy of 150-million-year-old conifer seed cones from the Late Jurassic Morrison Formation, USA, and of recent and other fossil cones. • Methods: MicroCT was carried out on cones using a General Electric phoenix v|tome|x s 240D, and resulting projections were processed with visualization software to produce image stacks of serial single sections for two-dimensional (2D) visualization, 3D segmented reconstructions with targeted structures in color, and computer animations. • Results: If preserved in differing densities, microCT produced images of internal fossil tissues that showed important characters such as seed phyllotaxy or number of seeds per cone scale. Color segmentation of deeply embedded seeds highlighted the arrangement of seeds in spirals. MicroCT of recent cones was even more effective. • Conclusions: This is the first paper on microCT integrated with 3D segmentation and computer animation applied to silicified seed cones, which resulted in excellent 2D serial sections and segmented 3D reconstructions, revealing features requisite to cone identification and understanding of strobilus construction. PMID:25202495

  11. Environmental drivers of crocodyliform extinction across the Jurassic/Cretaceous transition

    PubMed Central

    Mannion, Philip D.; Upchurch, Paul

    2016-01-01

    Crocodyliforms have a much richer evolutionary history than represented by their extant descendants, including several independent marine and terrestrial radiations during the Mesozoic. However, heterogeneous sampling of their fossil record has obscured their macroevolutionary dynamics, and obfuscated attempts to reconcile external drivers of these patterns. Here, we present a comprehensive analysis of crocodyliform biodiversity through the Jurassic/Cretaceous (J/K) transition using subsampling and phylogenetic approaches and apply maximum-likelihood methods to fit models of extrinsic variables to assess what mediated these patterns. A combination of fluctuations in sea-level and episodic perturbations to the carbon and sulfur cycles was primarily responsible for both a marine and non-marine crocodyliform biodiversity decline through the J/K boundary, primarily documented in Europe. This was tracked by high extinction rates at the boundary and suppressed origination rates throughout the Early Cretaceous. The diversification of Eusuchia and Notosuchia likely emanated from the easing of ecological pressure resulting from the biodiversity decline, which also culminated in the extinction of the marine thalattosuchians in the late Early Cretaceous. Through application of rigorous techniques for estimating biodiversity, our results demonstrate that it is possible to tease apart the complex array of controls on diversification patterns in major archosaur clades. PMID:26962137

  12. Triassic-Jurassic Flora of Poland; Floristical Support of Climatic Changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barbacka, Maria; Pacyna, Grzegorz; Feldman-Olszewska, Anna; Ziaja, Jadwiga; Bodor, Emese

    2014-12-01

    Plant macroremains from five boreholes in Poland were studied. Two of them (Huta OP-1 and Studzianna) from the northern margin of the Holy Cross Mountains, yielded several taxa. In the other three boreholes determinable fos-sil plants were sporadic, albeit important. Most of the taxa from the Huta OP-1 and Studzianna boreholes are typi-cal of the European Early Jurassic (Hettangian and Sinemurian). Both localities, although close to one another, show incertae sedis, Desmiophyllum harrisii phytes and conifers (a new species incertae sedis, Desmiophyllum harrisii Barbacka et Pacyna is herein proposed), which would suggest rather wet and warm conditions. This flora is typical of the European Province of the Euro-Sinian Region. In Studzianna the Siberian elements dominate, gymnosperms, mainly Czekanowskiales, which in-dicate a drier and colder environment. The palaeobotanical data correspond to the results of clay mineral studies, in particular the kaolinite/illite ratio in the source formations. The kaolinite content confirms a decrease in temperature and a reduction in rainfall in the late Early Hettangian and the latest Hettangian in the area.

  13. Molecular composition and ultrastructure of Jurassic paravian feathers

    PubMed Central

    Lindgren, Johan; Sjövall, Peter; Carney, Ryan M.; Cincotta, Aude; Uvdal, Per; Hutcheson, Steven W.; Gustafsson, Ola; Lefèvre, Ulysse; Escuillié, François; Heimdal, Jimmy; Engdahl, Anders; Gren, Johan A.; Kear, Benjamin P.; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Yans, Johan; Godefroit, Pascal

    2015-01-01

    Feathers are amongst the most complex epidermal structures known, and they have a well-documented evolutionary trajectory across non-avian dinosaurs and basal birds. Moreover, melanosome-like microbodies preserved in association with fossil plumage have been used to reconstruct original colour, behaviour and physiology. However, these putative ancient melanosomes might alternatively represent microorganismal residues, a conflicting interpretation compounded by a lack of unambiguous chemical data. We therefore used sensitive molecular imaging, supported by multiple independent analytical tests, to demonstrate that the filamentous epidermal appendages in a new specimen of the Jurassic paravian Anchiornis comprise remnant eumelanosomes and fibril-like microstructures, preserved as endogenous eumelanin and authigenic calcium phosphate. These results provide novel insights into the early evolution of feathers at the sub-cellular level, and unequivocally determine that melanosomes can be preserved in fossil feathers. PMID:26311035

  14. Mirolydidae, a new family of Jurassic pamphilioid sawfly (Hymenoptera) highlighting mosaic evolution of lower Hymenoptera

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Mei; Rasnitsyn, Alexandr P.; Yang, Zhongqi; Shih, Chungkun; Wang, Hongbin; Ren, Dong

    2017-01-01

    We describe Pamphilioidea: Mirolydidae Wang, Rasnitsyn et Ren, fam. n., containing Mirolyda hirta Wang, Rasnitsyn et Ren, gen. et sp. n., from the late Middle Jurassic Jiulongshan Formation of Daohugou, Inner Mongolia, China. The new taxon is characterized by unique forewing venation with the presence of forewing SC, 1-RS almost as long as 1-M, M + Cu straight, 2r-rs strongly reclival, and antenna with homonomous flagellum, revealing new and important details in antennal evolutionary transformations. Thus, M. hirta with a combination of primitive and more derived characters highlights its transitional state in the Pamphilioidea and complex mosaic evolution within Pamphilioidea in the late Middle Jurassic. The body of this species is densely covered with thin and long setae, suggesting its possible habit of visiting gymnosperm reproductive organs for pollen feeding and/or pollination during the late Middle Jurassic, much earlier than the appearance of angiosperm flowers. PMID:28266631

  15. Fossil Finds Expand Early Hominid Anatomy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bower, B.

    1991-01-01

    Hominid fossils found in late 1990 in Ethiopia are reported. A controversy surrounding these remains and those of earlier expeditions, including Lucy, over whether more than one species of hominid are represented is discussed. (CW)

  16. Mud fossils

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    ,

    1997-01-01

    At the close of the 18th century, the haze of fantasy and mysticism that tended to obscure the true nature of the Earth was being swept away. Careful studies by scientists showed that rocks had diverse origins. Some rock layers, containing clearly identifiable fossil remains of fish and other forms of aquatic animal and plant life, originally formed in the ocean. Other layers, consisting of sand grains winnowed clean by the pounding surf, obviously formed as beach deposits that marked the shorelines of ancient seas.

  17. Late Pleistocene sediments and fossils near the mouth of Mad River, Humboldt County, California: Facies analysis, sequence development, and possible age correlation

    SciTech Connect

    Harvey, E.W. . Dept. of Geological Sciences)

    1994-04-01

    Study of late Pleistocene-age sediments near the mouth of the Mad River revealed a sequence of nearshore marine and shallow bay deposits. This sequence, bounded by unconformities, is informally named the Mouth of Mad unit. The Mouth of mad unit can be divided into four distinct depositional facies at the study site. The lowest facies are the Nearshore Sand and Estuarine Mud, which lie unconformably on a paleosol. The sand facies grades upward into a high-energy, interbedded Nearshore Sand and Gravel facies containing storm and rip-channel deposits. Above the sand and gravel is a Strand-Plain Sand facies. This sand is overlain by a laterally variable sequence of shell-rich Bay facies. The bay deposits can be further divided into five subfacies: (1) a Bioturbated Sand; (2) a Lower Tidal Flat Mud; (3) a Mixed Sand and Mud; (4) an oyster-rich Bay Mud; and (5) an Upper Tidal Flat Mud. The bay sequence is overlain unconformably by younger late Pleistocene-age marine terrace deposits. The depositional environments represented by these facies progress from a shoreline estuary to nearshore deposits, above storm wave base, and slowly back to shoreline and finally shallow bay conditions. The Mouth of Mad unit represents a transgressive-regressive sequence, involving the development of a protective spit. The uppermost mud within the Mouth of Mad unit has been dated, using thermoluminescence age estimation, at 176 [+-] 33 ka, placing it in the late Pleistocene. The Mouth of Mad unit appears to be younger than the fossiliferous deposits at Elk Head, Crannell Junction, Trinidad Head, Moonstone Beach, and the Falor Formation near Maple Creek, and possibly time equivalent with gravel deposits exposed at the western end of School Road in McKinleyville.

  18. Middle Jurassic strata link Wallowa, Olds Ferry, and Izee terranes in the accreted Blue Mountains island arc, northeastern Oregon

    SciTech Connect

    White, J.D.L. ); Vallier, T. ); Stanley, G.D. Jr. ); Ash, S.R. ); White, D.L.

    1992-08-01

    Middle Jurassic strata atop the Wallowa terrane in northeastern Oregon link the Wallowa, Izee, and Olds Ferry terranes as related elements of a single long-lived and complex oceanic feature, the Blue Mountains island arc. Middle Jurassic strata in the Wallowa terrane include a dacitic ash-flow deposit and contain fossil corals and bivalves of North American affinity. Plant fossils in fluvial sandstones support a Jurassic age and indicate a seasonal temperate climate. Corals in a transgressive sequence traditionally overlying the fluvial units are of Bajocian age and are closely related to endemic varieties of the Western Interior embayment. They are unlike Middle Jurassic corals in other Cordilleran terranes; their presence suggests that the Blue Mountains island arc first approached the North American craton at high paleolatitudes in Middle Jurassic time. The authors consider the Bajocian marine strata and underlying fluvial volcaniclastic units to be a basin-margin equivalent of the Izee terrane, a largely Middle Jurassic (Bajocian) succession of basinal volcaniclastic and volcanic rocks known to overlie the Olds Ferry and Baker terranes.

  19. Occurrence of sauropod dinosaur tracks in the Upper Jurassic of Chile (redescription of Iguanodonichnus frenki)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moreno, Karen; Benton, Michael J.

    2005-12-01

    New observations from the only studied Upper Jurassic dinosaur unit in South America, the Baños del Flaco Formation, Chile, are presented herein. The original description of the ichnospecies Iguanodonichnus frenki contains several mistakes and information that needs updating. Therefore, we provide a redescription, including new data collected in the field, that supports I. frenki as a sauropod in origin on the basis of the following features: step angles average less than 110°; pes prints intersect the trackway midline; pes prints are longer than wide, with the long axis rotated outward; the claw impression of digit I is prominent and directed forward; and claws on digits II, III, and IV are strongly reduced. These morphological characteristics might give clues about the pes morphology of the South American Jurassic sauropods, whose foot bone remains are scarce. The presence of this sauropod ichnospecies in the Late Jurassic agrees with Early-Middle Jurassic faunal associations in South America.

  20. Fossilization of melanosomes via sulfurization.

    PubMed

    McNamara, Maria E; van Dongen, Bart E; Lockyer, Nick P; Bull, Ian D; Orr, Patrick J

    2016-05-01

    Fossil melanin granules (melanosomes) are an important resource for inferring the evolutionary history of colour and its functions in animals. The taphonomy of melanin and melanosomes, however, is incompletely understood. In particular, the chemical processes responsible for melanosome preservation have not been investigated. As a result, the origins of sulfur-bearing compounds in fossil melanosomes are difficult to resolve. This has implications for interpretations of original colour in fossils based on potential sulfur-rich phaeomelanosomes. Here we use pyrolysis gas chromatography mass spectrometry (Py-GCMS), fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and time of flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (ToF-SIMS) to assess the mode of preservation of fossil microstructures, confirmed as melanosomes based on the presence of melanin, preserved in frogs from the Late Miocene Libros biota (NE Spain). Our results reveal a high abundance of organosulfur compounds and non-sulfurized fatty acid methyl esters in both the fossil tissues and host sediment; chemical signatures in the fossil tissues are inconsistent with preservation of phaeomelanin. Our results reflect preservation via the diagenetic incorporation of sulfur, i.e. sulfurization (natural vulcanization), and other polymerization processes. Organosulfur compounds and/or elevated concentrations of sulfur have been reported from melanosomes preserved in various invertebrate and vertebrate fossils and depositional settings, suggesting that preservation through sulfurization is likely to be widespread. Future studies of sulfur-rich fossil melanosomes require that the geochemistry of the host sediment is tested for evidence of sulfurization in order to constrain interpretations of potential phaeomelanosomes and thus of original integumentary colour in fossils.

  1. Late Quaternary climate change in the Awatere Valley, South Island, New Zealand using a sine model with a maximum likelihood envelope on fossil beetle data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marra, M. J.; Smith, E. G. C.; Shulmeister, J.; Leschen, R.

    2004-07-01

    We present a new climatic reconstruction method appropriate for biological proxies where modern distributions are poorly defined and data sets are small. The technique uses a sine function in conjunction with maximum likelihood estimates of best high and best low values for the distribution of each species. To demonstrate the model we present temperature reconstructions for the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) and Holocene from beetle fossil assemblages from the Awatere Valley, New Zealand. The temperature estimates are determined by the mutual overlap of the climate range for all the species in the assemblage. The overlap is then compared with modern physio-chemical conditions. For our example, we estimate the LGM summer (February) mean temperature was about 3.5-4°C cooler, and July (winter) mean daily minimum temperature was about 4-5°C cooler than present day temperatures. The maximum likelihood estimates broaden the reconstructed temperature ranges to 2.5-5°C cooler for February temperatures and 3.5-6.0°C cooler for mean minimum daily temperature of the coldest month (July). These estimates are consistent with LGM temperature estimates of 4-7°C from other climate proxy indicators. Estimates of Holocene temperatures are very similar to modern. Estimates are compared with results from the established mutual climatic range (MCR) technique and the results are compatible. MCR is less robust than the sine model approach for these data because it requires the pre-determination of the critical physio-chemical controls and assumes Gaussian distributions in climate space. The sine model is conceptually superior to traditional BIOCLIM modelling, with which it shares many features, because BIOCLIM also assumes Gaussian distributions and the sine model allows attribute testing of the data sets which are not possible with BIOCLIM.

  2. Taphonomic and paleoenvironmental considerations for the concentrations of macroinvertibrate fossils in the Romualdo Member, Santana Formation, Late Aptian - Early Albian, Araripe Basin, Araripina, NE, Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prado, Ludmila Alves Cadeira Do; Pereira, Priscilla Albuquerque; Sales, Alexandre Magno Feitosa; Barreto, Alcina Magnólia Franca

    2015-10-01

    Benthic macroinvertebrate fossils can be seen towards to the top of the Romualdo Member of the Santana Formation, in the Araripe Basin, Northeast Brazil, and can provide paleoenvironmental and paleobiogeographical information regarding the Cretaceous marine transgression which reached the interior basins in Northeast Brazil. We analyse taphonomic characteristics of macroinvertebrate concentrations of two outcrops (Torrinha and Torre Grande) within the municipality Araripina, Pernambuco, in order to enhance our understanding of the Cretaceous paleoenvironment in the western portion of the Araripe Basin. At the outcrop Torrinha, proximal tempestitic taphofacies were identified. These predominantly consist of ceritid, cassiopid, and later, naticid gastropods as well as undetermined bivalves. Given this lack of variability it can be deduced that there were no significant paleoenvironmental changes during the successive stages tempestitic sedimentation. In the Torre Grande outcrop distal to proximal tempestitic taphofacies were identified from the base to the top respectively pointing to a decrease in paleodepth. Asides from the macroinvertebrates present in Torrinha, there are also echinoids - unequivocal evidence for marine conditions. These occurrences appear to be restricted to Romualdo Member outcrops in the Araripina municipality (the Southeast portion of the Araripe Basin) confirming a previously published hypothesis suggesting that the Cretaceous marine transgression originated from the neighbouring Parnaíba Basin to the west. This study identified marine molluscs of a similar age to those in the Romualdo Member's equivalent rock units in the Parnaíba and Sergipe-Alagoas (SE-AL) basins suggesting a marine connection between these basins and the Araripe Basin during the Early Cretaceous.

  3. The Jurassic of Svalbard, Sedimentology, Stratigraphy and Paleontology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koevoets, Maayke; Hammer, Øyvind

    2014-05-01

    During the Mesozoic the landmass now known as Svalbard drifted from 45oN to 65oN. The average global temperature was significantly higher, disabling the formation of icecaps at the poles, resulting in a higher sea-level. At the time the location now known as Svalbard was covered by a shallow ocean and mostly marine, organic rich, black shales, interrupted by possibly deltaic sediments were deposited. These sediments are rich in invertebrate fossils. A general description of the Agardhfjellet formation, spanning the middle to upper Jurassic, was made by Dypvik in 1991. Wierzbowski (1989) described some ammonites in detail from the Kimmeridgian. It is not known if the fauna extends further up or down in the formation. Since 2004 the Museum of Natural History of Oslo has been active in Spitsbergen Svalbard. Extensive and detailed sedimentological and stratigraphic research was never conducted as the focus lay on vertebrate fossils. A detailed sedimentological analysis, description and correlation to other Jurassic Formations (such as the Kimmeridge Shales, Hekkingen Formation and draupne Formation) is essential to better understand the circumstances where the black organic-rich shales (a highly potential source rock) were deposited in and to be able to predict their occurrences. Included in this description is taxonomy, taphonomy and the stratigraphic development of invertebrate fauna to pinpoint the age of the sediments.

  4. Jurassic Lake T'oo'dichi': a large alkaline, saline lake, Morrison Formation, eastern Colorado Plateau

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Turner, C.E.; Fishman, N.S.

    1991-01-01

    Recognition of alkaline, saline-lake deposits in the Morrison Formation significantly alters interpretations of depositional environments of this formation, and it also has important implications for paleoclimatic interpretation. Late Jurassic climate was apparently much more arid than had previously been thought. In fact, sedimentologic evidence suggests that the lake basin was typically dry for extended periods and enjoyed only brief wet intervals. This conclusion has important consequences for environmental interpretation of the habitat that was favorable for large herbivorous dinosaurs, which thrived in the Late Jurassic. -from Authors

  5. Jurassic and Cretaceous Hagiastridae from the Blake-Bahama Basin /Site 5A, JOIDES Leg I/ and the Great Valley Sequence, California Coast Ranges.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pessagno, E. A., Jr.

    1971-01-01

    Description of a total of 24 new species and four genuses of Jurassic and Cretaceous Hagiastridae found in the Great Valley Sequence of the California Coast Ranges. Also described are four new species from the late Jurassic strata of the Blake-Bahama Basin. Spumellariina with a spongy meshwork is included in the superfamily Spongodiscacea Haeckel.

  6. Highly specialized mammalian skulls from the Late Cretaceous of South America.

    PubMed

    Rougier, Guillermo W; Apesteguía, Sebastián; Gaetano, Leandro C

    2011-11-02

    Dryolestoids are an extinct mammalian group belonging to the lineage leading to modern marsupials and placentals. Dryolestoids are known by teeth and jaws from the Jurassic period of North America and Europe, but they thrived in South America up to the end of the Mesozoic era and survived to the beginnings of the Cenozoic. Isolated teeth and jaws from the latest Cretaceous of South America provide mounting evidence that, at least in western Gondwana, dryolestoids developed into strongly endemic groups by the Late Cretaceous. However, the lack of pre-Late Cretaceous dryolestoid remains made study of their origin and early diversification intractable. Here we describe the first mammalian remains from the early Late Cretaceous of South America, including two partial skulls and jaws of a derived dryolestoid showing dental and cranial features unknown among any other group of Mesozoic mammals, such as single-rooted molars preceded by double-rooted premolars, combined with a very long muzzle, exceedingly long canines and evidence of highly specialized masticatory musculature. On one hand, the new mammal shares derived features of dryolestoids with forms from the Jurassic of Laurasia, whereas on the other hand, it is very specialized and highlights the endemic, diverse dryolestoid fauna from the Cretaceous of South America. Our specimens include only the second mammalian skull known for the Cretaceous of Gondwana, bridging a previous 60-million-year gap in the fossil record, and document the whole cranial morphology of a dryolestoid, revealing an unsuspected morphological and ecological diversity for non-tribosphenic mammals.

  7. Are the oldest 'fossils', fossils

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schopf, J. W.

    1976-01-01

    A comparative statistical study has been carried out on populations of modern algae, Precambrian algal microfossils, the 'organized elements' of the Orgueil carbonaceous meteorite, and the oldest microfossil-like objects now known (spheroidal bodies from the Fig Tree and Onverwacht Groups of the Swaziland Supergroup, South Africa). The distribution patterns exhibited by the more than 3000 m.y.-old Swaziland microstructures bear considerable resemblance to those of the abiotic 'organized elements' but differ rather markedly from those exhibited by younger, assuredly biogenic, populations. Based on these comparisons, it is concluded that the Swaziland spheroids could be, at least in part, of nonbiologic origin; these oldest known fossil-like microstructures should not be regarded as constituting firm evidence of Archean life.

  8. Diverse subaerial and sublacustrine hot spring settings of the Cerro Negro epithermal system (Jurassic, Deseado Massif), Patagonia, Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guido, Diego M.; Campbell, Kathleen A.

    2012-06-01

    The Late Jurassic (~ 150 Ma) Cerro Negro volcanic-epithermal-geothermal system (~ 15 km2 area), Deseado Massif, Patagonia, Argentina, includes two inferred volcanic emission centers characterized by rhyolitic domes linked along NW-SE regional faults that are associated with deeper level Au/Ag mineralization to the NW, and with shallow epithermal quartz veins and mainly travertine surface hot spring manifestations to the SE. Some travertines are silica-replaced, and siliceous and mixed silica-carbonate geothermal deposits also are found. Five hot spring-related facies associations were mapped in detail, which show morphological and textural similarities to Pleistocene-Recent geothermal deposits at Yellowstone National Park (U.S.A.), the Kenya Rift Valley, and elsewhere. They are interpreted to represent subaerial travertine fissure ridge/mound deposits (low-flow spring discharge) and apron terraces (high-flow spring discharge), as well as mixed silica-carbonate lake margin and shallow lake terrace vent-conduit tubes, stromatolitic mounds, and volcano-shaped cones. The nearly 200 mapped fossil vent-associated deposits at Cerro Negro are on a geographical and numerical scale comparable with subaerial and sublacustrine hydrothermal vents at Mammoth Hot Springs, and affiliated with Yellowstone Lake, respectively. Overall, the Cerro Negro geothermal system yields paleoenvironmentally significant textural details of variable quality, owing to both the differential preservation potential of particular subaerial versus subaqueous facies, as well as to the timing and extent of carbonate diagenesis and silica replacement of some deposits. For example, the western fault associated with the Eureka epithermal quartz vein facilitated early silicification of the travertine deposits in the SE volcanic emission center, thereby preserving high-quality, microbial macro- and micro-textures of this silica-replaced "pseudosinter." Cerro Negro provides an opportunity to reconstruct

  9. Jurassic plutons in the Desolation wilderness, northern Sierra Nevada batholith, California: A new segment in the Jurassic magmatic arc

    SciTech Connect

    Sabine, C. . Quaternary Sciences Center)

    1993-04-01

    A 164[+-]7 Ma U-P zircon date establishes a Middle- to Late-Jurassic age for the Pyramid Peak granite and synplutonic dioritoids and hybrid rocks that comprise the Crystal Range suite, located southwest of Lake Tahoe. A Jurassic age is also assigned to the Keiths Dome quartz monzonite and the Desolation Valley and Camper Flat granodiorites (Loomis', 1983, Early Granitic Group) which are distinctly older than surrounding Cretaceous granitoids. The Keiths Dome quartz monzonite, the oldest pluton of the group, may be as old as 180 Ma and is distinguished by ductile shear zones and recrystallization textures which indicate an episode of deformation not undergone by other plutons. The Camper flat and Desolation Valley granodiorites are the youngest plutons of the group. ENE-trending microdiorite dikes filled extensional fractures, perpendicular to the direction of shortening, in all Jurassic plutons but on none of the Cretaceous bodies. Jurassic plutons may help constrain ages of metasedimentary and metavolcanic rocks and associated structures in the Mount Tallac roof pendant. The Pyramid Peak granite intrudes the Sailor Canyon Formation which bears Late Pliensbachian ammonites (Fisher, 1990), and the Keiths Dome quartz monzonite intrudes the overlying Tuttle Lake Formation and transects faults and shear zones in the pendant. Initial Sr isotope ratios for the Pyramid Peak granite range between 0.705427 and 0.706874, spanning the 0.706 value taken by some to mark the western limit of sialic lower crust. Data suggest an isotopically mixed source containing mantle and crustal components. Such an environment is not inconsistent with a passive continental margin where mafic magma invades rifted continental crust.

  10. Jurassic extension and Cenozoic inversion tectonics in the Asturian Basin, NW Iberian Peninsula: 3D structural model and kinematic evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uzkeda, Hodei; Bulnes, Mayte; Poblet, Josep; García-Ramos, José Carlos; Piñuela, Laura

    2016-09-01

    We constructed a geological map, a 3D model and cross-sections, carried out a structural analysis, determined the stress fields and tectonic transport vectors, restored a cross section and performed a subsidence analysis to unravel the kinematic evolution of the NE emerged portion of the Asturian Basin (NW Iberian Peninsula), where Jurassic rocks crop out. The major folds run NW-SE, normal faults exhibit three dominant orientations: NW-SE, NE-SW and E-W, and thrusts display E-W strikes. After Upper Triassic-Lower Jurassic thermal subsidence, Middle Jurassic doming occurred, accompanied by normal faulting, high heat flow and basin uplift, followed by Upper Jurassic high-rate basin subsidence. Another extensional event, possibly during Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous, caused an increment in the normal faults displacement. A contractional event, probably of Cenozoic age, led to selective and irregularly distributed buttressing and fault reactivation as reverse or strike-slip faults, and folding and/or offset of some previous faults by new generation folds and thrusts. The Middle Jurassic event could be a precursor of the Bay of Biscay and North Atlantic opening that occurred from Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous, whereas the Cenozoic event would be responsible for the Pyrenean and Cantabrian ranges and the partial closure of the Bay of Biscay.

  11. Will My Fossil Float?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Riesser, Sharon; Airey, Linda

    1993-01-01

    Explains how young students can be introduced to fossils. Suggests books to read and science activities including "Fossils to Eat" where students make fossils from peanut butter, honey, and powdered milk. (PR)

  12. Two new species of Trichoceridae from the Middle Jurassic Jiulongshan Formation of Inner Mongolia, China

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Fei; Shih, Chungkun; Ren, Dong

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Two new species, Eotrichocera (Archaeotrichocera) longensis sp. n. and Eotrichocera (Archaeotrichocera) amabilis sp. n. of Trichoceridae are described based on a combination of the following characters: Sc ending proximad of the forking of R2, shape of d cell and A2 rather short and bending sharply toward posterior margin. These fossil specimens were collected from the Middle Jurassic Jiulongshan Formation of Daohugou in Inner Mongolia, China. PMID:24899858

  13. Palynological age determination for Dorcheat and Hosston Formations - Jurassic-Cretaceous boundary in northern Louisiana

    SciTech Connect

    Rogers, R.

    1987-09-01

    Forty-four core samples from three wells drilled into the Dorcheat and Hosston formations in northern Louisiana were examined for fossil palynomorphs. These samples were obtained from the four beds of the Dorcheat formation, and from the lower two beds of the Hosston Formation. A diverse terrestrial and marine palynoflora containing stratigraphically significant species indicates that the cored section of strata spans the Jurassic-Cretaceous boundary.

  14. The first euthemistid damsel-dragonfly from the Middle Jurassic of China (Odonata, Epiproctophora, Isophlebioptera)

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yongjun; Nel, André; Shih, Chungkun; Ren, Dong; Pang, Hong

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Sinoeuthemis daohugouensis gen. et sp. n. is the first record of the isophlebiopteran family Euthemistidae from Middle Jurassic of northeast China, while previously this family was restricted to the early Late Jurassic Kazakhstan. This new finding allows us to emend the family diagnosis with hindwing characters. This new species shows a mixture of characters alternatively present in different genera of the two families Euthemistidae and Sphenophlebiidae. PMID:23653508

  15. The first euthemistid damsel-dragonfly from the Middle Jurassic of China (Odonata, Epiproctophora, Isophlebioptera).

    PubMed

    Li, Yongjun; Nel, André; Shih, Chungkun; Ren, Dong; Pang, Hong

    2013-01-01

    Sinoeuthemis daohugouensis gen. et sp. n. is the first record of the isophlebiopteran family Euthemistidae from Middle Jurassic of northeast China, while previously this family was restricted to the early Late Jurassic Kazakhstan. This new finding allows us to emend the family diagnosis with hindwing characters. This new species shows a mixture of characters alternatively present in different genera of the two families Euthemistidae and Sphenophlebiidae.

  16. Adaptations to squid-style high-speed swimming in Jurassic belemnitids

    PubMed Central

    Klug, Christian; Schweigert, Günter; Fuchs, Dirk; Kruta, Isabelle; Tischlinger, Helmut

    2016-01-01

    Although the calcitic hard parts of belemnites (extinct Coleoidea) are very abundant fossils, their soft parts are hardly known and their mode of life is debated. New fossils of the Jurassic belemnitid Acanthoteuthis provided supplementary anatomical data on the fins, nuchal cartilage, collar complex, statoliths, hyponome and radula. These data yielded evidence of their pelagic habitat, their nektonic habit and high swimming velocities. The new morphological characters were included in a cladistic analysis, which confirms the position of the Belemnitida in the stem of Decabrachia (Decapodiformes). PMID:26740564

  17. Episodic dike intrusions in the northwestern Sierra Nevada, California: Implications for multistage evolution of a Jurassic arc terrane

    SciTech Connect

    Dilek, Y.; Moores, E.M. ); Thy, P. )

    1991-02-01

    In the northwestern Sierra Nevada, California, volcanic and plutonic rocks of the Smartville and Slate Creek complexes, both fragments of a Jurassic arc terrane, are tectonically juxtaposed against ophiolitic and marine rocks that represent late Paleozoic-early Mesozoic oceanic basement. This oceanic basement is intruded by Early Jurassic dikes that are coeval with hypabyssal and plutonic rocks within the Smartville and Slate Creek complexes. These dikes have geochemical characteristics reflecting a depleted and metasomatized source, as commonly observed in modern fore-arc settings and incipient volcanic arcs, and are interpreted to be the conduits for the Early Jurassic arc volcanism, which was built on and across the disrupted oceanic basement. Late Jurassic sheeted dikes intruding the Smartville complex have basaltic compositions compatible with an intra-arc or back-arc origin and indicate that a spreading event occurred within the arc in early Late Jurassic time. These interpretations support models for a complex multistage evolution via episodic magmatism and deformation within a singly ensimatic Jurassic arc terrane west of the North American continent.

  18. Upper Jurassic depositional systems and hydrocarbon potential of southeast Mississippi

    SciTech Connect

    Meendsen, F.C.; Moore, C.H.; Heydari, E.; Sassen, R.

    1987-09-01

    Upper Jurassic sedimentation in southeast Mississippi was controlled by eustatic sea level fluctuations and locally modified by salt tectonism and basement structure. This study, using conventional core data and geophysical logs, indicates that a stable carbonate platform developed along the updip margin of the Mississippi interior salt basin. The basin was partially barred from the main Gulf of Mexico water mass by the Wiggins uplift, and became evaporitic during the Late Jurassic. Moldic, intercrystalline, and vuggy dolomite porosity is developed on the crests of intermediate and high-amplitude salt highs and on the Wiggins uplift. Jurassic source rocks are lower Smackover laminated lime mudstones. Migration into adjacent reservoirs postdated formation of porosity and the growth of salt anticlines, the most common trap type. A large potential Norphlet-Smackover gas play extends along the southern flank of the Wiggins uplift. Salt anticlines within the interior basin remain viable targets. Small oil discoveries should continue in stratigraphic traps, subtle salt structures, and basement blocks on the platform.

  19. A perfect flower from the Jurassic of China.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhong-Jian; Wang, Xin

    2016-07-03

    Flower, enclosed ovule and tetrasporangiate anther are three major characters distinguishing angiosperms from other seed plants. Morphologically, typical flowers are characterised by an organisation with gynoecium and androecium surrounded by corolla and calyx. Theoretically, flowers are derived from their counterparts in ancient ancestral gymnosperms. However, as for when, how and from which groups, there is no consensus among botanists yet. Although angiosperm-like pollen and angiosperms have been claimed in the Triassic and Jurassic, typical flowers with the aforesaid three key characters are still missing in the pre-Cretaceous age, making many interpretations of flower evolution tentative. Thus searching for flower in the pre-Cretaceous has been a tantalising task for palaeobotanists for a long time. Here, we report a typical flower, Euanthus paniigen. et sp. nov., from the Middle-Late Jurassic of Liaoning, China. Euanthus has sepals, petals, androecium with tetrasporangiate dithecate anthers and gynoecium with enclosed ovules, organised just like in perfect flowers of extant angiosperms. The discovery of Euanthus implies that typical angiosperm flowers have already been in place in the Jurassic, and provides a new insight unavailable otherwise for the evolution of flowers.

  20. A perfect flower from the Jurassic of China

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Zhong-Jian; Wang, Xin

    2016-01-01

    Flower, enclosed ovule and tetrasporangiate anther are three major characters distinguishing angiosperms from other seed plants. Morphologically, typical flowers are characterised by an organisation with gynoecium and androecium surrounded by corolla and calyx. Theoretically, flowers are derived from their counterparts in ancient ancestral gymnosperms. However, as for when, how and from which groups, there is no consensus among botanists yet. Although angiosperm-like pollen and angiosperms have been claimed in the Triassic and Jurassic, typical flowers with the aforesaid three key characters are still missing in the pre-Cretaceous age, making many interpretations of flower evolution tentative. Thus searching for flower in the pre-Cretaceous has been a tantalising task for palaeobotanists for a long time. Here, we report a typical flower, Euanthus panii gen. et sp. nov., from the Middle–Late Jurassic of Liaoning, China. Euanthus has sepals, petals, androecium with tetrasporangiate dithecate anthers and gynoecium with enclosed ovules, organised just like in perfect flowers of extant angiosperms. The discovery of Euanthus implies that typical angiosperm flowers have already been in place in the Jurassic, and provides a new insight unavailable otherwise for the evolution of flowers. PMID:27134345

  1. Complete exposure of Jurassic strata from the Newark Basin, New Jersey

    SciTech Connect

    Fedosh, M.S.

    1985-01-01

    Exploratory drilling in 1985 has been undertaken along the right-of-way of a proposed flood diversion tunnel in northern New Jersey. The 21.8 kilometer long tunnel route is across the strike of Late Triassic and Early Jurassic rocks of the Newark Basin in an area where rock exposures are few due to glaciation. Approximately 2400 meters of the 6300 meter thick northern portion of the Newark Basin is represented in rock cores. The uppermost 870 meters of Late Triassic strata have been drilled and show an increased percentage of gravel toward the Jurassic contact. Approximately 1620 meters of Early Jurassic strata have been drilled including the three Watchung basalt flows. The oldest basalt flow at the Triassic-Jurassic contact has undergone extensive faulting with high angle normal and reverse oblique slip faults extending into the underlying Triassic rocks. Lacustrine deposits sandwiched between the basalt flows are cyclic with the entire transgressive-regressive sequences up to 12 meters thick and deep water shales and algal mats up to 4 meters thick. What emerges for the first time is a continuous picture of the Newark Basin Jurassic strata. These strata, containing kerogen-rich layers, are some of the youngest found in any of the Mesozoic rift basins. These rock cores represent the western most Mesozoic strata which extend eastward to similar-aged deposits found in outer continental shelf drill holes.

  2. Middle and upper jurassic depositional environments at outer shelf and slope of Baltimore Canyon Trough

    SciTech Connect

    Gamboa, L.A.; Stoffa, P.L.; Truchan, M.

    1985-04-01

    New CDP data acquired in the Baltimore Canyon Trough during project LASE made it possible to map a continuous Jurassic sedimentary sequence from the continental margin to the abyssal plain without interruption by basement structures. Intense carbonate sedimentation is inferred at the outer shelf during the Middle and Late Jurassic. Carbonate sedimentation probably started during the Middle Jurassic with a platform that prograded seaward with the development of ramps. By the Late Jurassic, a major reef complex had developed at the outer continental shelf. The onset of reef growth can be tentatively dated as 138 Ma by using the J1 reflector dated by the Deep Sea Drilling Project. A well-developed reef-talus deposit can be identified overlying the interface that generates the J1 reflector. A detailed analysis of semblancederived interval velocities in the reef-talus sequence indicates a compressional velocity of 4.3-4.5 km/sec (14,100-14,800 ft/sec) for that interval, which was part of a major barrier reef along the United States eastern margin. After the reef formed, the deep oceanic basin was mostly starved from shelf-derived sediments until the reef died and was buried by clastic sediments. By correlation of our seismic data and COST well information, that in the Baltimore Canyon Trough this reef had terminated by about the end of the Jurassic Period.

  3. Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous radiolarian age constraints from the sedimentary cover of the Amasia ophiolite (NW Armenia), at the junction between the Izmir-Ankara-Erzinçan and Sevan-Hakari suture zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Danelian, T.; Asatryan, G.; Galoyan, Gh.; Sahakyan, L.; Stepanyan, J.

    2016-01-01

    The Amasia ophiolite, situated at the northernmost corner of Armenia, is part of the Sevan-Hakari suture zone which links with the Izmir-Ankara-Erzinçan suture zone in northern Turkey. Three new radiolarian assemblages have been extracted from siliceous sedimentary rocks that accumulated on the Amasia ophiolite in an oceanic setting. Two of these assemblages were extracted from red-brownish bedded cherts overlying basaltic lavas; one of these is likely to be middle Oxfordian to early Kimmeridgian in age, while the second correlates with the Berriasian. Similar time-equivalent lava-chert sequences have been dated recently using radiolarians from the Stepanavan, Vedi and Sevan ophiolite units, where they are considered to relate to submarine volcanic activity in the back-arc marginal basin in which the Armenian ophiolites were formed. The third radiolarian assemblage, of late Barremian age, was extracted from a more than 15-m-thick volcaniclastic-chert sequence. The related volcanic activity is likely to have been subaerial and probably relates to the formation of an oceanic volcanic plateau; no Cretaceous subaerial volcanism has been previously recorded in the Lesser Caucasus area.

  4. Exhumation, cooling and deformation history of the necking zone of the fossil Adriatic rifted margin: the Campo/Grosina section (S-Switzerland and N-Italy)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petri, Benoît; Mohn, Geoffroy; Wijbrans, Jan R.; Manatschal, Gianreto; Beltrando, Marco

    2016-04-01

    The Austroalpine units in SE Switzerland and N-Italy preserve remnants of the fossil Adriatic rifted margin. Notably the Campo-Grosina units represent the necking zone where major crustal thinning was accommodated during the Jurassic rifting. This contribution aims to unravel the complex tectonic evolution recorded in these units from the late Carboniferous - early Permian to the Jurassic rifting. The cooling and exhumation of the Campo and overlying Grosina units, separated by the Eita shear zone are explored by the acquisition of 40Ar/39Ar on hornblende, muscovite and biotite. New geochronological data on the Grosina unit present 40Ar/39Ar ages between 273 and 261 Ma for muscovite and between 248 and 246 Ma for biotite. The Campo unit shows clearly younger ages between 210 and 177 Ma on hornblende, between 186 and 176 Ma on muscovite and between 174 and 171 Ma on biotite. Numerous data were discarded due to frequent excess 40Ar on amphiboles, probably associated to the emplacement of the Sondalo gabbro with a high 40Ar/36Ar ratio in Permian times. These new ages, together with a compilation of existing ages obtained with different chronometers (U-Pb, Sm-Nd, Rb-Sr, K-Ar, 40Ar/39Ar) and performed on different lithologies from both the Campo and the Grosina units allow an estimation of the cooling rates for these units to be done. The new results show that both the Campo and the Grosina units underwent a cooling rate around 10°C/Ma in Permian time. The Grosina unit, being in a shallower crustal level, did not record the Jurassic cooling, reaching up to 50°C/Ma in the Campo unit. The notable difference in cooling rates between the Permian and the Jurassic events attests of a cooling without being associated to an exhumation in Permian times, whereas the Campo unit cooled rapidly in Jurassic times, due to an exhumation and an emplacement in shallow crustal levels. The latter tectonic event was likely caused by shearing along the Eita or other greenschist facies

  5. Amphibious flies and paedomorphism in the Jurassic period.

    PubMed

    Huang, Diying; Nel, André; Cai, Chenyang; Lin, Qibin; Engel, Michael S

    2013-03-07

    The species of the Strashilidae (strashilids) have been the most perplexing of fossil insects from the Jurassic period of Russia and China. They have been widely considered to be ectoparasites of pterosaurs or feathered dinosaurs, based on the putative presence of piercing and sucking mouthparts and hind tibio-basitarsal pincers purportedly used to fix onto the host's hairs or feathers. Both the supposed host and parasite occur in the Daohugou beds from the Middle Jurassic epoch of China (approximately 165 million years ago). Here we analyse the morphology of strashilids from the Daohugou beds, and reach markedly different conclusions; namely that strashilids are highly specialized flies (Diptera) bearing large membranous wings, with substantial sexual dimorphism of the hind legs and abdominal extensions. The idea that they belong to an extinct order is unsupported, and the lineage can be placed within the true flies. In terms of major morphological and inferred behavioural features, strashilids resemble the recent (extant) and relict members of the aquatic fly family Nymphomyiidae. Their ontogeny are distinguished by the persistence in adult males of larval abdominal respiratory gills, representing a unique case of paedomorphism among endopterygote insects. Adult strashilids were probably aquatic or amphibious, shedding their wings after emergence and mating in the water.

  6. Biogeochemistry of the Triassic-Jurassic Boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williford, K. H.; Ward, P. D.; Garrison, G. H.

    2006-12-01

    New biostratigraphic and biogeochemical data are presented from Triassic-Jurassic (Tr-J) boundary sections at Kennecott Point, Queen Charlotte Islands (QCI), Canada, Muller Canyon, Nevada, USA, and Marokopa Beach, New Zealand. The New Zealand record shows two negative excursions in δ13Corg of approximately 2‰ associated with the Tr-J transition. The QCI and Nevada boundary sections show a consistent isotopic trend indicative of multiple major perturbations to the carbon cycle: one negative excursion in δ13Corg of 2‰ at the boundary and one positive excursion of 3 to 5‰ following the boundary. The post-Tr-J boundary positive excursion is especially prominent in boundary sections from QCI, where the high organic content of the black shales makes the rocks suitable for a survey of lipid biomarkers. New GC-MS data are presented from this locality, revealing changes in the distribution and abundance of alkanes, hopanes, and steranes across the Tr-J transition. Litho-, bio- and chemostratigraphy from these boundary localities do not support a single impact cause for the late Triassic extinctions, although impact events such as the Manicouagan may well have exerted significant stress on a biosphere still recovering from the Permian-Triassic mass extinction. The data support the idea of a degraded late Triassic environment persisting for millions of years and characterized by low atmospheric oxygen and high carbon dioxide associated with Central Atlantic Magmatic Province volcanism. Global warming and sea level change may have led to destabilization of seafloor methane hydrates and runaway greenhouse conditions.

  7. Extreme adaptations for aquatic ectoparasitism in a Jurassic fly larva.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jun; Wang, Bo; Engel, Michael S; Wappler, Torsten; Jarzembowski, Edmund A; Zhang, Haichun; Wang, Xiaoli; Zheng, Xiaoting; Rust, Jes

    2014-06-24

    The reconstruction of ancient insect ectoparasitism is challenging, mostly because of the extreme scarcity of fossils with obvious ectoparasitic features such as sucking-piercing mouthparts and specialized attachment organs. Here we describe a bizarre fly larva (Diptera), Qiyia jurassica gen. et sp. nov., from the Jurassic of China, that represents a stem group of the tabanomorph family Athericidae. Q. jurassica exhibits adaptations to an aquatic habitat. More importantly, it preserves an unusual combination of features including a thoracic sucker with six radial ridges, unique in insects, piercing-sucking mouthparts for fluid feeding, and crocheted ventral prolegs with upward directed bristles for anchoring and movement while submerged. We demonstrate that Q. jurassica was an aquatic ectoparasitic insect, probably feeding on the blood of salamanders. The finding reveals an extreme morphological specialization of fly larvae, and broadens our understanding of the diversity of ectoparasitism in Mesozoic insects.DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.02844.001.

  8. UV Light Reveals the Diversity of Jurassic Shell Colour Patterns: Examples from the Cordebugle Lagerstätte (Calvados, France)

    PubMed Central

    Caze, Bruno; Merle, Didier; Schneider, Simon

    2015-01-01

    Viewed under UV light the diverse and exceptionally well-preserved molluscs from the Late Jurassic Cordebugle Konservat Lagerstätte (Calvados, Normandy, France) reveal fluorescent fossil shell colour patterns predating the oldest previously known instance of such patterns by 100 Myr. Evidently, residual colour patterns are observable in Mesozoic molluscs by application of this non-destructive method, provided the shells are not decalcified or recrystallized. Among 46 species which are assigned to twelve gastropod families and eight bivalve families, no less than 25 species yielded positive results. Out of nine colour pattern morphologies that have been distinguished six occur in gastropods and three in bivalves. The presence of these variant morphologies clearly indicates a significant pre-Cenozoic diversification of colour patterns, especially in gastropods. In addition, the occurrence of two distinct types of fluorescence highlights a major difference in the chemical composition of the pigments involved in colour pattern formation in gastropods. This discovery enables us to discriminate members of higher clades, i.e. the Vetigastropoda emitting red fluorescence from the Caenogastropoda and Heterobranchia emitting whitish-beige to yellow fluorescence. Consequently, fluorescent colour patterns may help to allocate part of the numerous enigmatic Mesozoic gastropod taxa to their correct systematic position. PMID:26039592

  9. Latest Jurassic-early Cretaceous regressive facies, northeast Africa craton

    SciTech Connect

    van Houten, F.B.

    1980-06-01

    Nonmarine to paralic detrital deposits accumulated in six large basins between Algeria and the Arabo-Nubian shield during major regression in latest Jurassic and Early Cretaceous time. The Ghadames Sirte (north-central Libya), and Northern (Egypt) basins lay along the cratonic margin of northeastern Africa. The Murzuk, Kufra, and Southern (Egypt) basins lay in the south within the craton. Data for reconstructing distribution, facies, and thickness of relevant sequences are adequate for the three northern basins only. High detrital influx near the end of Jurassic time and in mid-Cretaceous time produced regressive nubian facies composed largely of low-sinuosity stream and fahdelta deposits. In the west and southwest the Ghadames, Murzuk, and Kufra basins were filled with a few hundred meters of detritus after long-continued earlier Mesozoic aggradation. In northern Egypt the regressive sequence succeeded earlier Mesozoic marine sedimentation; in the Sirte and Southern basins correlative deposits accumulated on Precambrian and Variscan terranes after earlier Mesozoic uplift and erosion. Waning of detrital influx into southern Tunisia and adjacent Libya in the west and into Israel in the east initiated an Albian to early Cenomanian transgression of Tethys. By late Cenomanian time it had flooded the entire cratonic margin, and spread southward into the Murzuk and Southern basins, as well as onto the Arabo-Nubian shield. Latest Jurassic-earliest Cretaceous, mid-Cretaceous, and Late Cretaceous transgressions across northeastern Africa recorded in these sequences may reflect worldwide eustatic sea-level rises. In contrast, renewed large supply of detritus during each regression and a comparable subsidence history of intracratonic and marginal basins imply regional tectonic control. 6 figures.

  10. Upper Jurassic of east Texas, a stratigraphic sedimentologic reevaluation

    SciTech Connect

    Moore, C.H.; McGillis, K.; Stewart, S.; Wilkinson, S.; Harwood, G.

    1985-02-01

    The Smackover-Haynesville of east Texas has long been modeled as a simple progradational carbonate-evaporite ramp. Recent data indicate that the conventional ramp model for this sequence should be abandoned in favor of an evolving rimmed shelf to platform model, forming in response to changes in rate of relative sea level rise during the Late Jurassic. Evidence for Smackover-Haynesville shelves include: (1) thick high-energy carbonates along the basin margin in the Smackover and throughout the Haynesville, (2) low-energy pellet-dominated lagoonal carbonates, evaporites, and evaporitic siliciclastics occurring landward of, and interfingering with, the Smackover and Haynesville basin-margin carbonate barriers, (3) deeper water, open-marine low-energy limestones with black shales seaward of the basin-margin barriers (Smackover-Gilmer undifferentiated), and (4) the Gilmer shale forms a siliciclastic wedge seaward of the Haynesville basin margin and its zero isopach defines the Kimmeridgian shelf margin. The Smackover and Haynesville seem to represent 2 distinct sedimentologic cycles, with each cycle reflecting an initial relative sea level rise during which a rimmed shelf and lagoon are developed, and a terminal sea level standstill during which the shelf evolved into a high-energy platform. Although these sedimentologic patterns seem compatible with accepted Jurassic sea level curves, they may also reflect differential basin-margin subsidence combined with variable carbonate production rates. Finally, the shelf-platform model more clearly defines future exploration strategies for Smackover-Haynesville targets in east Texas and perhaps across the Gulf of Mexico, if eustatic sea level changes were the dominant causative factor for shelf development in the Late Jurassic.

  11. A new rhamphorhynchid pterosaur (Pterosauria) from Jurassic deposits of Liaoning Province, China.

    PubMed

    Lü, Junchang; Pu, Hanyong; Xu, Li; Wei, Xuefang; Chang, Huali; Kundrát, Martin

    2015-01-16

    Compared to pterosaurs from the Early Cretaceous from China, Late Jurassic pterosaurs are relatively rare. A new rhamphorhynchid pterosaur, Orientognathus chaoyngensis gen. et sp. nov., is erected based on an incomplete skeleton from the Upper Jurassic Tuchengzi Formation of Chaoyang, Liaoning Province, China. It is identified by the following characters: the toothless tip of the lower jaw is slightly pointed; the length ratio of wing metacarpal to humerus is 0.38, the ulna is shorter than each wing phalanx and the tibia is nearly equal to femur in length. A phylogenetic analysis recovers Orientognathus chaoyngensis as a rhamphorhynchid pterosaur. Orientognathus chaoyngensis is perhaps the youngest Jurassic pterosaur from western Liaoning Province of China. 

  12. Basin geodynamics and sequence stratigraphy of Upper Triassic to Lower Jurassic deposits of Southern Tunisia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carpentier, Cédric; Hadouth, Suhail; Bouaziz, Samir; Lathuilière, Bernard; Rubino, Jean-Loup

    2016-05-01

    Aims of this paper are to propose a geodynamic and sequential framework for the late Triassic and early Jurassic of and south Tunisia and to evidence the impact of local tectonics on the stratigraphic architecture. Facies of the Upper Triassic to Lower Jurassic of Southern Tunisia have been interpreted in terms of depositional environments. A sequential framework and correlation schemes are proposed for outcrops and subsurface transects. Nineteen middle frequency sequences inserted in three and a half low frequency transgression/regression cycles were evidenced. Despite some datation uncertainties and the unknown durations of Lower Jurassic cycles, middle frequency sequences appear to be controlled by eustasy. In contrast the tectonics acted as an important control on low frequency cycles. The Carnian flooding was certainly favored by the last stages of a rifting episode which started during the Permian. The regression accompanied by the formation of stacked angular unconformities and the deposition of lowstand deposits during the late Carnian and Norian occured during the uplift and tilting of the northern basin margins. The transpressional activity of the Jeffara fault system generated the uplift of the Tebaga of Medenine high from the late Carnian and led to the Rhaetian regional angular Sidi Stout Unconformity. Facies analysis and well-log correlations permitted to evidence that Rhaetian to Lower Jurassic Messaoudi dolomites correspond to brecciated dolomites present on the Sidi Stout unconformity in the North Dahar area. The Early-cimmerian compressional event is a possible origin for the global uplift of the northern African margin and Western Europe during the late Carnian and the Norian. During the Rhaetian and the early Jurassic a new episode of normal faulting occured during the third low frequency flooding. This tectonosedimentary evolution ranges within the general geodynamic framework of the north Gondwana margin controlled by the opening of both

  13. Parasites in the Fossil Record: A Cretaceous Fauna with Isopod-Infested Decapod Crustaceans, Infestation Patterns through Time, and a New Ichnotaxon

    PubMed Central

    Klompmaker, Adiël A.; Artal, Pedro; van Bakel, Barry W. M.; Fraaije, René H. B.; Jagt, John W. M.

    2014-01-01

    Parasites are common in modern ecosystems and are also known from the fossil record. One of the best preserved and easily recognisable examples of parasitism in the fossil record concerns isopod-induced swellings in the branchial chamber of marine decapod crustaceans. However, very limited quantitative data on the variability of infestation percentages at the species, genus, and family levels are available. Here we provide this type of data for a mid-Cretaceous (upper Lower Cretaceous, upper Albian) reef setting at Koskobilo, northern Spain, on the basis of 874 specimens of anomurans and brachyurans. Thirty-seven specimens (4.2%), arranged in ten species, are infested. Anomurans are more heavily infested than brachyurans, variability can be high within genera, and a relationship may exist between the number of specimens and infestation percentage per taxon, possibly suggesting host-specificity. We have also investigated quantitative patterns of infestation through geological time based on 88 infested species (25 anomurans, 55 brachyurans, seven lobsters, and one shrimp), to show that the highest number of infested species can be found in the Late Jurassic, also when corrected for the unequal duration of epochs. The same Late Jurassic peak is observed for the percentage of infested decapod species per epoch. This acme is caused entirely by infested anomurans and brachyurans. Biases (taphonomic and otherwise) and causes of variability with regard to the Koskobilo assemblage and infestation patterns through time are discussed. Finally, a new ichnogenus and -species, Kanthyloma crusta, are erected to accommodate such swellings or embedment structures (bioclaustrations). PMID:24667587

  14. The Oldest Jurassic Dinosaur: A Basal Neotheropod from the Hettangian of Great Britain.

    PubMed

    Martill, David M; Vidovic, Steven U; Howells, Cindy; Nudds, John R

    2016-01-01

    Approximately 40% of a skeleton including cranial and postcranial remains representing a new genus and species of basal neotheropod dinosaur is described. It was collected from fallen blocks from a sea cliff that exposes Late Triassic and Early Jurassic marine and quasi marine strata on the south Wales coast near the city of Cardiff. Matrix comparisons indicate that the specimen is from the lithological Jurassic part of the sequence, below the first occurrence of the index ammonite Psiloceras planorbis and above the last occurrence of the Rhaetian conodont Chirodella verecunda. Associated fauna of echinoderms and bivalves indicate that the specimen had drifted out to sea, presumably from the nearby Welsh Massif and associated islands (St David's Archipelago). Its occurrence close to the base of the Blue Lias Formation (Lower Jurassic, Hettangian) makes it the oldest known Jurassic dinosaur and it represents the first dinosaur skeleton from the Jurassic of Wales. A cladistic analysis indicates basal neotheropodan affinities, but the specimen retains plesiomorphic characters which it shares with Tawa and Daemonosaurus.

  15. The Oldest Jurassic Dinosaur: A Basal Neotheropod from the Hettangian of Great Britain

    PubMed Central

    Martill, David M.; Vidovic, Steven U.; Howells, Cindy; Nudds, John R.

    2016-01-01

    Approximately 40% of a skeleton including cranial and postcranial remains representing a new genus and species of basal neotheropod dinosaur is described. It was collected from fallen blocks from a sea cliff that exposes Late Triassic and Early Jurassic marine and quasi marine strata on the south Wales coast near the city of Cardiff. Matrix comparisons indicate that the specimen is from the lithological Jurassic part of the sequence, below the first occurrence of the index ammonite Psiloceras planorbis and above the last occurrence of the Rhaetian conodont Chirodella verecunda. Associated fauna of echinoderms and bivalves indicate that the specimen had drifted out to sea, presumably from the nearby Welsh Massif and associated islands (St David’s Archipelago). Its occurrence close to the base of the Blue Lias Formation (Lower Jurassic, Hettangian) makes it the oldest known Jurassic dinosaur and it represents the first dinosaur skeleton from the Jurassic of Wales. A cladistic analysis indicates basal neotheropodan affinities, but the specimen retains plesiomorphic characters which it shares with Tawa and Daemonosaurus. PMID:26789843

  16. Plutonic rocks of Jurassic age in the Alaska-Aleutian Range batholith: chemical variation and polarity.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reed, B.I.; Miesch, A.T.; Lanphere, M.A.

    1983-01-01

    Plutonic rocks of Jurassic age exposed on the Pacific side of this batholith form a compositionally continuous calc-alkaline suite that ranges from hornblende gabbro to quartz monzonite. Tonalite and quartz diorite are the dominant rock types. Trend-surface analysis of 102 samples indicates that the direction of slope of the trend is approximately normal to the Jurassic magmatic arc. K2O and SiO2 increase towards the E-SE and the other oxides towards the W-NW. If the chemical trends reflect the approximate geometry of a palaeo-subduction zone, the polarity of the Jurassic magmatic arc is to the NW, i.e. subduction was directed towards the SE. Thus the palaeo-subduction zone is on the opposite side of the arc from the position that has generally been assumed, indicating that the Jurassic plutonic rocks were not generated in response to classical Andean-type convergent plate margins. The magmatic arc may have been formed in an intra-ocean environment and subsequently has been rafted northwards and accreted to this part of the N Pacific rim during the late Mesozoic. Middle and Upper Jurassic clastics underlying Cook Inlet to the SE and derived from the magmatic arc are classified as back-arc deposits, rather than as an arc-trench gap sequence.-L.C.H.

  17. Mineralization of soft-part anatomy and invading microbes in the horseshoe crab Mesolimulus from the Upper Jurassic Lagerstätte of Nusplingen, Germany.

    PubMed

    Briggs, Derek E G; Moore, Rachel A; Shultz, Jeffrey W; Schweigert, Günter

    2005-03-22

    A remarkable specimen of Mesolimulus from the Upper Jurassic (Kimmeridgian) of Nusplingen, Germany, preserves the musculature of the prosoma and associated microbes in three dimensions in calcium phosphate (apatite). The musculature of Mesolimulus conforms closely to that of modern horseshoe crabs. Associated with the muscles are patches of mineralized biofilm with spiral and coccoid forms. This discovery emphasizes the potential of soft-bodied fossils as a source for increasing our knowledge of the diversity of fossil microbes in particular settings.

  18. Biostratigraphic restudy documents Triassic/Jurassic section in Georges Bank COST G-2 well

    SciTech Connect

    Cousminer, H.L.; Steinkraus, W.E.; Hall, R.E.

    1984-04-01

    In 1977, the COST G-2 well as drilled in Georges Bank, 132 mi (212 km) east of Nantucket Island to a total depth of 21,874 ft (6667 m). Biostratigraphic studies of 363 sidewall and conventional cores and 695 cutting samples resulted in a detailed zonation from the Late Jurassic to the present. Restudy of the original samples, as well as new preparations from previously unstudied core material, resulted in revision of the zonation of the Late Jurassic and older section. On the basis of our study of pollen and spores, dinoflagellates, nannofossils, and foraminifers, we revised the age sequence as follows: 5856 ft (1785 m) Late Jurassic (Thithonian); 6000 ft (1829 m) Kimmeridgian; 6420 ft (1957 m) Oxfordian; 6818 ft (2078 m) Callovian; 8200 ft (2499 m) Bathonian; 9677 ft (2950 m) Bajocian; 14567 ft (4440 m) Norian (Late Triassic). Norian dinoflagellate cysts and Tasmanites sp. indicate that intermittent normal marine sedimentation was taking place on Georges Bank as early as Norian time, although most of the Triassic section (+14,500 ft or 4420 m to T.D.) interpreted as having been deposited under evaporitic sabkha-like conditions. The Norian dinoflagellates (Noricysta, Heibergella, Hebecysta, Suessia, Dapcodinium, and Rhombodella) include species common to both Arctic Canada and the Tethyan region, indicating a possible Late Triassic marine connection.

  19. New Fossil Evidence on the Sister-Group of Mammals and Early Mesozoic Faunal Distributions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shubin, Neil H.; Crompton, A. W.; Sues, Hans-Dieter; Olsen, Paul E.

    1991-03-01

    Newly discovered remains of highly advanced mammal-like reptiles (Cynodontia: Tritheledontidae) from the Early Jurassic of Nova Scotia, Canada, have revealed that aspects of the characteristic mammalian occlusal pattern are primitive. Mammals and tritheledontids share an homologous pattern of occlusion that is not seen in other cynodonts. The new tritheledontids represent the first definite record of this family from North America. The extreme similarity of North American and African tritheledontids supports the hypothesis that the global distribution of terrestrial tetrapods was homogeneous in the Early Jurassic. This Early Jurassic cosmopolitanism represents the continuation of a trend toward increased global homogeneity among terrestrial tetrapod communities that began in the late Paleozoic.

  20. Jurassic exploration trends of East Texas

    SciTech Connect

    Presly, M.W.; Reed, C.H.

    1984-09-01

    This article deals with exploration and production from the Jurassic reservoirs of East Texas. The paper discussed the trapping mechanisms, structural configurations, lithologies and stratigraphic relationships. The major formations presented are the Smackover and the Haynesville (Cotton Valley).

  1. Taphonomy of Microbial Biosignatures in Spring Deposits: A Comparison of Modern, Quaternary, and Jurassic Examples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Potter-McIntyre, Sally L.; Williams, Jason; Phillips-Lander, Charity; O'Connell, Laura

    2017-03-01

    On Earth, microorganisms commonly enhance mineral precipitation and mediate mineralogical and chemical compositions of resulting deposits, particularly at spring systems. However, preservation of any type of microbial fossil or chemical or textural biosignature depends on the degree of alteration during diagenesis and factors such as exposure to diagenetic fluids. Little is known about the transformation of biosignatures during diagenesis over geologic time. Ten Mile Graben, Utah, USA, hosts a cold spring system that is an exceptional site for evaluation of diagenetic alteration of biosignatures because of the presence of modern springs with actively precipitating microbial mats and a series of progressively older tufa terraces (<400 ka) preserved in the area from the same spring system. A previously undescribed Jurassic laminated carbonate unit within the upper part of the Brushy Basin Member of the Morrison Formation is also exposed in Ten Mile Graben. This research characterizes the geology of these modern and Quaternary saline, Fe-undersaturated, circumneutral Ten Mile Graben cold springs and provides the first description in the literature of the Jurassic Brushy Basin Member of the Morrison Formation carbonate deposit. Taphonomy of microbial fossils is characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The data highlight two distinct methods of biosignature formation: (1) precipitation of minerals from an undersaturated solution owing to metabolic activity of the cells and (2) mineral precipitation on charged cell surfaces that produce distinctive microbial trace fossils. Although diagenesis can destroy or severely degrade biosignatures, particularly microbial fossils, some fossils and trace fossils are preserved because entombment by Ostwald ripening limits diagenetic alteration. Recognizing spring-fed, biogenic tufas is crucial for astrobiological research and the search for life on Mars.

  2. World petroleum systems with Jurassic source rocks

    SciTech Connect

    Klemme, H.D. )

    1993-11-08

    Fourteen petroleum systems with Upper Jurassic source rocks contain one quarter of the world's discovered oil and gas. Eleven other systems with Lower and Middle Jurassic source rocks presently have a minor but significant amount of discovered oil and gas. The purpose of this article is to review the systems geologically, describe their location in space and time on a continental scale, estimate their relative petroleum system recovery efficiencies, and outline the effect their essential elements and processes have on their petroleum plumbing.

  3. Jurassic-Neocomian biostratigraphy, North Slope, Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Mickey, M.B.; Haga, H.

    1985-04-01

    The foraminiferal and palynological biostratigraphy of subsurface Jurassic and Neocomian (Early Cretaceous) age strata from the North Slope were investigated to better define biostratigraphic zone boundaries and to help clarify the correlation of the stratigraphic units in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska (NPRA). Through use of micropaleontologic data, eight principal biostratigraphic units have been identified. The Neocomian and Jurassic strata have each been subdivided into four main units.

  4. Continental Rifting and Transform Faulting Along the Jurassic Transantarctic Rift, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmidt, Dwight L.; Rowley, Peter D.

    1986-04-01

    The Transantarctic rift, an extensional continental rift valley, formed between East and West Antarctica during latest Early and Middle Jurassic time and is represented today by the high Transantarctic Mountains, which contain large volumes of continental flood basalt, diabase, and gabbro. Transantarctic rifting marked the beginning of the breakup of Gondwanaland; it was contiguous and synchronous with continental rifting between East Antarctica-India and Africa as represented by the continental basalt and diabase of Queen Maud Land and the Karroo of southern Africa. During Late Jurassic time, about 150 Ma or slightly earlier, East and West Gondwanaland separated and new oceanic crust of the earliest Indian Ocean formed between East Antarctica-India and Africa. If, as assumed, West Antarctica and South America remained fixed through a tip-to-tip join between the Antarctic Peninsula and Tierra del Fuego, then this seafloor spreading required major right-lateral transform faulting of 500 to 1000 km on the Transantarctic rift system between East and West Antarctica. The Transantarctic Mountains were elevated at about the same time in Late Jurassic; such uplifts are characteristic of active rift margins worldwide. During Cenozoic time, extensional block faulting, independent of the Jurassic rifting, further disrupted large areas of West Antarctica. During the same time, the Transantarctic Mountains were further uplifted.

  5. The Jurassic-early Cretaceous Ilo batholith of southern coastal Peru: geology, geochronology and geochemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boekhout, Flora; Sempere, Thierry; Spikings, Richard; Schaltegger, Urs

    2010-05-01

    The Ilo batholith (17°00 - 18°30 S) crops out in an area of about 20 by 100 km, along the coast of southern Peru. This batholith is emplaced into the ‘Chocolate‘ Formation of late Permian to middle Jurassic age, which consists of more than 1000 m of basaltic and andesitic lavas, with interbedded volcanic agglomerates and breccias. The Ilo Batholith is considered to be a rarely exposed fragment of the Jurassic arc in Peru. Our aim is to reconstruct the magmatic evolution of this batholith, and place it within the context of long-lasting magma genesis along the active Andean margin since the Paleozoic. Sampling for dating and geochemical analyses was carried out along several cross sections through the batholith that were exposed by post-intrusion eastward tilting of 20-30°. Sparse previous work postulates early to middle Jurassic and partially early Cretaceous emplacement, on the basis of conventional K/Ar and 40Ar/39Ar dating methods in the Ilo area. Twenty new U-Pb zircon ages (LA-ICP-MS and CA-ID-TIMS) accompanied by geochemical data suggests the Ilo batholith formed via the amalgamation of middle Jurassic and early Cretaceous, subduction-related plutons. Preliminary Hf isotope studies reveal a primitive mantle source for middle Jurassic intrusions. Additional Sr, Nd and Hf isotope analyses are planned to further resolve the source regions of different pulses of plutonic activity. We strongly suggest that batholith emplacement was at least partly coeval with the emplacement of the late Permian to middle Jurassic Chocolate Formation, which was deposited in an extensional tectonic regime. Our age results and geochemical signature fit into the scheme of episodic emplacement of huge amounts of subduction related magmatism that is observed throughout the whole Andean event, particularly during the middle Jurassic onset of the first Andean cycle (southern Peru, northern Chile and southern Argentina). Although the exact geodynamic setting remains to be precisely

  6. Fossilized bioelectric wire - the trace fossil Trichichnus.

    PubMed

    Kędzierski, M; Uchman, A; Sawlowicz, Z; Briguglio, A

    2015-04-16

    The trace fossil Trichichnus is proposed as an indicator of fossil bioelectric bacterial activity at the oxic-anoxic interface zone of marine sediments. This fulfils the idea that such processes, commonly found in the modern realm, should be also present in the geological past. Trichichnus is an exceptional trace fossil due to its very thin diameter (mostly less than 1 mm) and common pyritic filling. It is ubiquitous in some fine-grained sediments, where it has been interpreted as a burrow formed deeper than any other trace fossils, below the redox boundary. Trichichnus, formerly referred to as deeply burrowed invertebrates, has been found as remnant of a fossilized intrasediment bacterial mat that is pyritized. As visualized in 3-D by means of X-ray computed microtomography scanner, Trichichnus forms dense filamentous fabric, which reflects that it is produced by modern large, mat-forming, sulfide-oxidizing bacteria, belonging mostly to Thioploca-related taxa, which are able to house a complex bacterial consortium. Several stages of Trichichnus formation, including filamentous, bacterial mat and its pyritization, are proposed to explain an electron exchange between oxic and suboxic/anoxic layers in the sediment. Therefore, Trichichnus can be considered a fossilized "electric wire".

  7. Fossilized bioelectric wire - the trace fossil Trichichnus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kędzierski, M.; Uchman, A.; Sawlowicz, Z.; Briguglio, A.

    2014-12-01

    The trace fossil Trichichnus is proposed as an indicator of fossil bioelectric bacterial activity at the interface oxic - anoxic zone of marine sediments. This fulfils the idea that such processes, commonly found in the modern realm, should be also present in the geological past. Trichichnus is an exceptional trace fossil due to its very thin diameter (mostly less than 1 mm) and common pyritic filling. It is ubiquitous in some fine-grained sediments, where it has been interpreted as a burrow formed deeper than any other trace fossils, below the redox boundary. Trichichnus formerly referred to as deeply burrowed invertebrates, has been found as remnant of a fossilized intrasediment bacterial mat that is pyritized. As visualized in 3-D by means of X-ray computed microtomography scanner, Trichichnus forms dense filamentous fabric, which reflects that produced by modern large, mat-forming, sulphide-oxidizing bacteria, belonging mostly to Trichichnus-related taxa, which are able to house a complex bacterial consortium. Several stages of Trichichnus formation, including filamentous, bacterial mat and its pyritization, are proposed to explain an electron exchange between oxic and suboxic/anoxic layers in the sediment. Therefore, Trichichnus can be considered a fossilized "electric wire".

  8. Fossilized bioelectric wire - the trace fossil Trichichnus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kędzierski, M.; Uchman, A.; Sawlowicz, Z.; Briguglio, A.

    2015-04-01

    The trace fossil Trichichnus is proposed as an indicator of fossil bioelectric bacterial activity at the oxic-anoxic interface zone of marine sediments. This fulfils the idea that such processes, commonly found in the modern realm, should be also present in the geological past. Trichichnus is an exceptional trace fossil due to its very thin diameter (mostly less than 1 mm) and common pyritic filling. It is ubiquitous in some fine-grained sediments, where it has been interpreted as a burrow formed deeper than any other trace fossils, below the redox boundary. Trichichnus, formerly referred to as deeply burrowed invertebrates, has been found as remnant of a fossilized intrasediment bacterial mat that is pyritized. As visualized in 3-D by means of X-ray computed microtomography scanner, Trichichnus forms dense filamentous fabric, which reflects that it is produced by modern large, mat-forming, sulfide-oxidizing bacteria, belonging mostly to Thioploca-related taxa, which are able to house a complex bacterial consortium. Several stages of Trichichnus formation, including filamentous, bacterial mat and its pyritization, are proposed to explain an electron exchange between oxic and suboxic/anoxic layers in the sediment. Therefore, Trichichnus can be considered a fossilized "electric wire".

  9. Aestivation in the fossil record: evidence from ichnology.

    PubMed

    Hembree, Daniel I

    2010-01-01

    Aestivation is a physiological and behavioral response to high temperature or low moisture conditions. Therefore, it is typically not considered to be capable of being preserved in the fossil record. However, most aestivating organisms produce a burrow to protect themselves from the harmful environmental conditions that trigger aestivation. These structures can be preserved in the rock record as trace fossils. While trace fossils are abundant in the continental fossil record, few are definitively associated with aestivation. Interpreting aestivation behavior from fossil burrows requires a detailed examination and interpretation of the surrounding sedimentary rocks and comparisons with taxonomically and ecologically similar extant organisms. Currently, only four types of aestivation structures are recognized in the fossil record: Pleistocene earthworm chambers, Devonian to Cretaceous lungfish burrows, Permian lysorophid burrows, and Permian to Triassic dicynodont burrows. The trace fossil evidence suggests that aestivation evolved independently among continental organisms in several clades during the middle to late Paleozoic.

  10. Isotopic constraints on the petrogenesis of jurassic plutons, Southeastern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mayo, D.P.; Anderson, J.L.; Wooden, J.L.

    1998-01-01

    The 165 Ma Eagle Mountain intrusion is a heterogeneous, enclave-bearing, metaluminous remnant of the Cordilleran Jurassic arc that cuts regionally metamorphosed pre-Mesozoic rocks in the southeastern Mojave Desert of California. The main phase of the intrusion consists of granodiorite to tonalite host facies, diorite mixed facies, and homogeneous monzogranite facies. The host facies contains microdiorite enclaves interpreted as intermingled masses of mafic magma. Late-phase leucogranite stocks cut the main phase. Mineral equilibria indicate emplacement at ???6.5 km depth, with solidus temperatures ranging from 760??C for diorite to 700??C for felsic granodiorite. Although uniform radiogenic-isotope compositions (Sri = 0.7085, ???Ndi = -9.4) suggest derivation from a single source, no known source has the composition required. A hybrid source is proposed, consisting of various proportions of juvenile mantle and recycled lower crust. Calculations indicate that the source of the Eagle Mountain intrusion comprised >60% juvenile mantle and <40% recycled crust. On the basis of their isotopic compositions, other mafic Jurassic plutons in the region were derived from sources containing different proportions of mantle and crustal components.

  11. Peri-equatorial paleolatitudes for Jurassic radiolarian cherts of Greece

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Aiello, I.W.; Hagstrum, J.T.; Principi, G.

    2008-01-01

    Radiolarian-rich sediments dominated pelagic deposition over large portions of the Tethys Ocean during middle to late Jurassic time as shown by extensive bedded chert sequences found in both continental margin and ophiolite units of the Mediterranean region. Which paleoceanographic mechanisms and paleotectonic setting favored radiolarian deposition during the Jurassic, and the nature of a Tethys-wide change from biosiliceous to biocalcareous (mainly nannofossil) deposition at the beginning of Cretaceous time, have remained open questions. Previous paleomagnetic analyses of Jurassic red radiolarian cherts in the Italian Apennines indicate that radiolarian deposition occurred at low peri-equatorial latitudes, similar to modern day deposition of radiolarian-rich sediments within equatorial zones of high biologic productivity. To test this result for other sectors of the Mediterranean region, we undertook paleomagnetic study of Mesozoic (mostly middle to upper Jurassic) red radiolarian cherts within the Aegean region on the Peloponnesus and in continental Greece. Sampled units are from the Sub-Pelagonian Zone on the Argolis Peninsula, the Pindos-Olonos Zone on the Koroni Peninsula, near Karpenissi in central Greece, and the Ionian Zone in the Varathi area of northwestern Greece. Thermal demagnetization of samples from all sections removed low-temperature viscous and moderate-temperature overprint magnetizations that fail the available fold tests. At Argolis and Koroni, however, the cherts carry a third high-temperature magnetization that generally exhibits a polarity stratigraphy and passes the available fold tests. We interpret the high-temperature component to be the primary magnetization acquired during chert deposition and early diagenesis. At Kandhia and Koliaky (Argolis), the primary declinations and previous results indicate clockwise vertical-axis rotations of ??? 40?? relative to "stable" Europe. Due to ambiguities in hemispheric origin (N or S) and thus

  12. Modes of fossil preservation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schopf, J.M.

    1975-01-01

    The processes of geologic preservation are important for understanding the organisms represented by fossils. Some fossil differences are due to basic differences in organization of animals and plants, but the interpretation of fossils has also tended to be influenced by modes of preservation. Four modes of preservation generally can be distinguished: (1) Cellular permineralization ("petrifaction") preserves anatomical detail, and, occasionally, even cytologic structures. (2) Coalified compression, best illustrated by structures from coal but characteristic of many plant fossils in shale, preserves anatomical details in distorted form and produces surface replicas (impressions) on enclosing matrix. (3) Authigenic preservation replicates surface form or outline (molds and casts) prior to distortion by compression and, depending on cementation and timing, may intergrade with fossils that have been subject to compression. (4) Duripartic (hard part) preservation is characteristic of fossil skeletal remains, predominantly animal. Molds, pseudomorphs, or casts may form as bulk replacements following dissolution of the original fossil material, usually by leaching. Classification of the kinds of preservation in fossils will aid in identifying the processes responsible for modifying the fossil remains of both animals and plants. ?? 1975.

  13. Trace fossils and sedimentary facies from a Late Cambrian-Early Ordovician tide-dominated shelf (Santa Rosita Formation, northwest Argentina): Implications for ichnofacies models of shallow marine successions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mangano, M.G.; Buatois, L.A.; Acenolaza, G.F.

    1996-01-01

    The Santa Rosita Formation is one the most widely distributed lower Paleozoic units of northwest Argentina. At the Quebrada del Salto Alto section, east of Purmamarca, Jujuy Province, it is represented by four sedimentary facies: thick-bedded planar cross-stratified quartzose sandstones (A), thin-bedded planar cross-stratified quartzose sandstones and mudstones (B), wave-rippled sandstones and bioturbated mudstones (C), and black and greenish gray shales (D). Paleocurrent data, sandstone architecture, and sedimentary structures from facies A and B indicate bipolar/bimodal paleoflows, suggesting the action of tidal currents. The succession is interpreted as that of a tide-dominated shelf, with only secondary influence of wave processes. Trace fossils are restricted to facies B and C. The Cruziana ichnocoenosis is preserved on the soles of thin-bedded planar cross-stratified quartzose sandstones (facies B). This ichnocoenosis consists of Conostichus isp., Cruziana omanica, C. semiplicata, C. cf. tortworthi, Cruziana isp. Helminthopsis abeli, Monomorphichnus bilinearis, M. multilineatus, Palaeophycus tubularis, Rusophycus carbonarius, R. latus, and R. isp. The occurrence of Cruziana semiplicata, C. omanica, C. cf. tortworthi, and Rusophycus latus supports a Late Cambrian-Tremadoc age. Slabbing of Cruziana shows complex interactions between biologic and sedimentologic processes, and suggests a predominance of exhumed traces, washed out and recast by tractive sand deposition. Sandstone soles are densely packed with biogenic structures and exhibit distinctive clusters of Rusophycus isp. that most likely represent trilobite nesting burrows. The Cruziana ichnocoenosis records the resident fauna of a protected, lower intertidal to subtidal interbar setting. The Skolithos ichnocoenosis is represented by high to low density vertical burrows of Skolithos linearis, which extend downwards to the quartzose sandstone soles of facies B and cross the Cruziana ichnocoenosis. The

  14. Paleoclimatology indicators of the Salt Wash member of the Upper Jurassic Morrison Formation near Jensen, Utah

    SciTech Connect

    Medlyn, D.A. . Dept. of Geology); Bilbey, S.A. )

    1993-04-01

    The Upper Jurassic Morrison Formation has yielded one of the richest floras of the so-called transitional conifers'' of the Middle Mesozoic. Recently, a silicified axis of one of these conifers was collected from the Salt Wash member in essentially the same horizon as a previously reported partial Stegosaurus skeleton. In addition, two other axes of conifers were collected in the same immediate vicinity. Paleoecological considerations are extrapolated from the coniferous flora, vertebrate fauna and associated lithologies. Techniques of paleodendrology and relationships of extant/extinct environments are compared. The paleoclimatic conditions of the transitional conifers and associated dinosaurian fossils are postulated.

  15. A re-examination of paleomagnetic results from NA Jurassic sedimentary rocks: Additional evidence for proposed Jurassic MUTO?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Housen, B. A.

    2015-12-01

    thought to be ~ coeval with the Sundance Fm- is significantly offset from this newer NA path, but a larger inclination error for this unit would produce a better agreement. Thus, pending more precise estimates of inclination error from these units, middle-late Jurassic sedimentary rocks from NA do support the existence of a MUTO (Monster Unknown True polar wander Occurrence) during Jurassic time.

  16. Major adaptive radiation in neritopsine gastropods estimated from 28S rRNA sequences and fossil records.

    PubMed Central

    Kano, Yasunori; Chiba, Satoshi; Kase, Tomoki

    2002-01-01

    A well-supported phylogeny of the Neritopsina, a gastropod superorder archaic in origin, radiated ecologically and diverse in morphology, is reconstructed based on partial 28S rRNA sequences. The result (Neritopsidae (Hydrocenidae (Helicinidae + Neritiliidae) (Neritidae + Phenacolepadidae))) is highly congruent with the fossil records and the character distribution of reproductive tracts in extant taxa. We suggest that the Neritopsina originated in subtidal shallow waters, invaded the land and became fully terrestrial at least three times in different clades, by the extinct Dawsonellidae in the Late Palaeozoic and by the Helicinidae and Hydrocenidae in the Mesozoic. Invasion of fresh- and brackish waters is prevalent among the Neritopsina as the Jurassic and freshwater ancestory is most probable for helicinids. The Phenacolepadidae, a group exclusively inhabiting dysoxic environments, colonized deep-sea hydrothermal vents and seeps in the Late Cretaceous or Early Cenozoic. Submarine caves have served as refuges for the archaic Neritopsidae since the Early to Middle Cenozoic, and the marine neritopsine slug Titiscania represents a highly specialized but relatively recent offshoot of this family. The Neritiliidae is another clade to be found utilizing submarine caves as shelter by the Oligocene; once adapted to the completely dark environment, but some neritiliids have immigrated to surface freshwater habitats. PMID:12495489

  17. Adaptation, plant evolution, and the fossil record

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Knoll, A. H.; Niklas, K. J.

    1987-01-01

    The importance of adaptation in determining patterns of evolution has become an important focus of debate in evolutionary biology. As it pertains to paleobotany, the issue is whether or not adaptive evolution mediated by natural selection is sufficient to explain the stratigraphic distributions of taxa and character states observed in the plant fossil record. One means of addressing this question is the functional evaluation of stratigraphic series of plant organs set in the context of paleoenvironmental change and temporal patterns of floral composition within environments. For certain organ systems, quantitative estimates of biophysical performance can be made on the basis of structures preserved in the fossil record. Performance estimates for plants separated in time or space can be compared directly. Implicit in different hypotheses of the forces that shape the evolutionary record (e.g. adaptation, mass extinction, rapid environmental change, chance) are predictions about stratigraphic and paleoenvironmental trends in the efficacy of functional performance. Existing data suggest that following the evolution of a significant structural innovation, adaptation for improved functional performance can be a major determinant of evolutionary changes in plants; however, there are structural and development limits to functional improvement, and once these are reached, the structure in question may no longer figure strongly in selection until and unless a new innovation evolves. The Silurian-Devonian paleobotanical record is consistent with the hypothesis that the succession of lowland floodplain dominants preserved in the fossil record of this interval was determined principally by the repeated evolution of new taxa that rose to ecological importance because of competitive advantages conferred by improved biophysical performance. This does not seem to be equally true for Carboniferous-Jurassic dominants of swamp and lowland floodplain environments. In these cases

  18. Adaptation, plant evolution, and the fossil record.

    PubMed

    Knoll, A H; Niklas, K J

    1987-01-01

    The importance of adaptation in determining patterns of evolution has become an important focus of debate in evolutionary biology. As it pertains to paleobotany, the issue is whether or not adaptive evolution mediated by natural selection is sufficient to explain the stratigraphic distributions of taxa and character states observed in the plant fossil record. One means of addressing this question is the functional evaluation of stratigraphic series of plant organs set in the context of paleoenvironmental change and temporal patterns of floral composition within environments. For certain organ systems, quantitative estimates of biophysical performance can be made on the basis of structures preserved in the fossil record. Performance estimates for plants separated in time or space can be compared directly. Implicit in different hypotheses of the forces that shape the evolutionary record (e.g. adaptation, mass extinction, rapid environmental change, chance) are predictions about stratigraphic and paleoenvironmental trends in the efficacy of functional performance. Existing data suggest that following the evolution of a significant structural innovation, adaptation for improved functional performance can be a major determinant of evolutionary changes in plants; however, there are structural and development limits to functional improvement, and once these are reached, the structure in question may no longer figure strongly in selection until and unless a new innovation evolves. The Silurian-Devonian paleobotanical record is consistent with the hypothesis that the succession of lowland floodplain dominants preserved in the fossil record of this interval was determined principally by the repeated evolution of new taxa that rose to ecological importance because of competitive advantages conferred by improved biophysical performance. This does not seem to be equally true for Carboniferous-Jurassic dominants of swamp and lowland floodplain environments. In these cases

  19. Ecological succession of a Jurassic shallow-water ichthyosaur fall.

    PubMed

    Danise, Silvia; Twitchett, Richard J; Matts, Katie

    2014-09-10

    After the discovery of whale fall communities in modern oceans, it has been hypothesized that during the Mesozoic the carcasses of marine reptiles created similar habitats supporting long-lived and specialized animal communities. Here, we report a fully documented ichthyosaur fall community, from a Late Jurassic shelf setting, and reconstruct the ecological succession of its micro- and macrofauna. The early 'mobile-scavenger' and 'enrichment-opportunist' stages were not succeeded by a 'sulphophilic stage' characterized by chemosynthetic molluscs, but instead the bones were colonized by microbial mats that attracted echinoids and other mat-grazing invertebrates. Abundant cemented suspension feeders indicate a well-developed 'reef stage' with prolonged exposure and colonization of the bones prior to final burial, unlike in modern whale falls where organisms such as the ubiquitous bone-eating worm Osedax rapidly destroy the skeleton. Shallow-water ichthyosaur falls thus fulfilled similar ecological roles to shallow whale falls, and did not support specialized chemosynthetic communities.

  20. Replacement geometry and fabrics of Smackover (Jurassic) dolomite, southern Alabama

    SciTech Connect

    Barrett, M.L.

    1986-09-01

    The intensity of dolomitization and associated reservoir development in the Smackover Formation, Conecuh Ridge-Wiggens arch areas, is not predictable by comparison with time-temperature index methods or porosity-depth curves. Major alteration patterns and associated dolomite fabrics reflect the early paleotopographic settings, where high fluid flux and massive replacement are associated with Late Jurassic basement highs. This large-scale replacement is most important in the lowermost Smackover section overlying the Norphlet sandstone from Chunchula field into the Manila Embayment. The heterogeneous nature of dolomite reservoir development is evident in Chunchula field, where local pods of permeable dolomite cut across sedimentary facies boundaries. Predicting the orientation of a dolomite permeability barrier where there is little well control can be facilitated by mapping the regional thickness variations; the extension of impermeable dolomite trends is generally parallel to isopach trends.

  1. Chronostratigraphy and hydrocarbon habitat associated with the Jurassic carbonates of Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

    SciTech Connect

    Alsharahan, A.S.; Whittle, G.L.

    1995-08-01

    Deposition of Jurassic epeiric shelf carbonates and evaporates were controlled by epeirogenic movement and sea level fluctuations which formed an excellent combination of source rocks, reservoirs and seats in Abu Dhabi. At the end of the Triassic, a relative drop in sea level, caused by eustatic sea level lowering in conjunction with minor tectonic uplift, resulted in non-deposition or erosion. In the Toarcian, deposition of carbonates and terrigenous, clastics produced the Marrat Formation. In the mid-Aalenian, a drop in sea level eroded much of the Marrat and some of the Triassic in offshore U.A.E. The deposition of the Hamlah Formation followed, under neritic, well-oxygenated conditions. The Middle Jurassic was characterized by widespread, normal marine shelf carbonates which formed the cyclic Izhara and Araej formations (reservoirs). In the Upper Jurassic, the carbonate shelf became differentiated into a broad shelf with a kerogen-rich intrashelf basin, formed in response to a eustatic rise coupled with epeirogenic downwarping and marine flooding. The intrashelf basin fill of muddy carbonate sediments constitutes the Diyab Formation and its onshore equivalent, the Dukhan Formation (source rocks). In the late Upper Jurassic, the climate became more arid and cyclic deposition of carbonates and evaporates prevailed, forming alternating peritidal anhydrite, dolomite and limestone in the Arab Formation (reservoir). Arid conditions continued into the Tithonian, fostering the extensive anhydrite of the Hith Formation (seal) in a sabkha/lagoonal setting on the shallow peritidal platform, the final regressive supratidal stage of this major depositional cycle.

  2. Living-fossil coccolithophore survivors of the Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hagino, K.; Young, J. R.; Bown, P. R.; Godrijan, J.; Kogame, K.; Kulhanek, D. K.; Horiguchi, T.

    2012-12-01

    Calcareous nannofossils (coccolithophores and other associated fossils), diversified greatly through the middle-late Mesozoic, but around 90% of these species became extinct at the K/Pg event. Although the specific cause of this mass extinction is still uncertain, the record of extinction and survivorship of nannoplankton has informed our understanding of the rates of extinction and recovery, and nature of survivorship in the plankton ecosystem. Recently we found living cells of a coccolithophore, which morphologically and structurally resembles the Mesozoic genus Cyclagelosphaera, from coastal-neritic waters of Tottori, Japan and of Rovinj, Croatia. Cyclagelosphaera is a characteristic Mesozoic genus that appeared in the middle Jurassic. It survived the K/Pg event, briefly flourished in post K/Pg oceans, with other K/Pg survivors, but disappeared from the fossil record in the Eocene. Bibliographic study has revealed that our specimens correspond to a living species Tergestiella adriatica, which was discovered from offshore Rovinji in 1934 but has never since been reported. Molecular phylogenetic studies of T. adriatica based on SSU rDNA sequences show that T. adriatica branched from the base of the clade of other living coccolithophores. This result suggests that T. adriatica diverged from the ancestor of other coccolithophores before the diversification of other taxa and supports the inference that T. adriatica is a direct descendent of Mesozoic Cyclagelosphaera rather than a homoeomorph. Floristic studies of living coccolithophores show that T. adriatica coexists with Braarudosphaera bigelowii, another K/Pg survivor, in the coastal area of Tottori, Japan. In both Mesozoic and Cenozoic oceans, calcareous nannoplankton are typically open-ocean dwellers, but a few taxa are confined to coastal waters. Curiously, all three extant coccolithophores with Mesozoic fossil records are coastal, meanwhile the other extant taxa with Cenozoic fossil records are oceanic. Our

  3. Restoring Fossil Creek

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Flaccus, Kathleen; Vlieg, Julie; Marks, Jane C.; LeRoy, Carri J.

    2004-01-01

    Fossil Creek had been dammed for the past 90 years, and plans were underway to restore the stream. The creek runs through Central Arizona and flows from the high plateaus to the desert, cutting through the same formations that form the Grand Canyon. This article discusses the Fossil Creek monitoring project. In this project, students and teachers…

  4. Paleogeographic evolution of early deep-water Gulf of Mexico and margins, Jurassic to middle Cretaceous (Comanchean)

    SciTech Connect

    Winker, C.D.; Buffler, R.T.

    1988-03-01

    The paleobathymetric configuration of the early Gulf of Mexico is inferred from (1) Cretaceous carbonate shelf margins interpreted from seismic profiles and other stratigraphic data; (2) distribution of Jurassic and Cretaceous platform and basinal facies; and (3) hindcasting of subsidence history in the central basin. Substantial paleogeographic ambiguity results from uncertainty about (1) kinematics and timing of Late Triassic to Jurassic extensional opening of the Gulf basin, which probably involved major strike-slip faulting, (2) the magnitude of subsequent compressive deformation on the western and southern basin margins, and (3) possible accretion of allochthonous terranes. 18 figures, 3 tables.

  5. Sea level regulated tetrapod diversity dynamics through the Jurassic/Cretaceous interval

    PubMed Central

    Tennant, Jonathan P.; Mannion, Philip D.; Upchurch, Paul

    2016-01-01

    Reconstructing deep time trends in biodiversity remains a central goal for palaeobiologists, but our understanding of the magnitude and tempo of extinctions and radiations is confounded by uneven sampling of the fossil record. In particular, the Jurassic/Cretaceous (J/K) boundary, 145 million years ago, remains poorly understood, despite an apparent minor extinction and the radiation of numerous important clades. Here we apply a rigorous subsampling approach to a comprehensive tetrapod fossil occurrence data set to assess the group's macroevolutionary dynamics through the J/K transition. Although much of the signal is exclusively European, almost every higher tetrapod group was affected by a substantial decline across the boundary, culminating in the extinction of several important clades and the ecological release and radiation of numerous modern tetrapod groups. Variation in eustatic sea level was the primary driver of these patterns, controlling biodiversity through availability of shallow marine environments and via allopatric speciation on land. PMID:27587285

  6. Bennettitales from the Grisethorpe Bed (Middle Jurassic) at Cayton Bay, Yorkshire, UK.

    PubMed

    Crane, Peter R; Herendeen, Patrick S

    2009-01-01

    Middle Jurassic fossil plants from the Grisethorpe Bed at Cayton Bay and Grisethorpe Bay, Yorkshire, UK, are preserved in a soft claystone, and plant mesofossils recovered by sieving reveal excellent details of external structure. Studies of these mesofossils complement previous work on macrofossils from the Grisethorpe Bed and allow the plant fossils in this classic flora to be studied in a similar way to those preserved in Cretaceous mesofloras. Bennettitales, a key group in discussions of how angiosperms may be related to other seed plants, are especially well represented among mesofossils from the Grisethorpe Bed. Abundant bennettitalean leaves, scale leaves, and fragments of pollen and ovulate organs provide new information on these extinct plants. In particular, a specimen of Williamsoniella coronata (presumed aborted) shows only weak differentiation between interseminal scales and ovules and provides further evidence of homology between these structures.

  7. Sea level regulated tetrapod diversity dynamics through the Jurassic/Cretaceous interval

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tennant, Jonathan P.; Mannion, Philip D.; Upchurch, Paul

    2016-09-01

    Reconstructing deep time trends in biodiversity remains a central goal for palaeobiologists, but our understanding of the magnitude and tempo of extinctions and radiations is confounded by uneven sampling of the fossil record. In particular, the Jurassic/Cretaceous (J/K) boundary, 145 million years ago, remains poorly understood, despite an apparent minor extinction and the radiation of numerous important clades. Here we apply a rigorous subsampling approach to a comprehensive tetrapod fossil occurrence data set to assess the group's macroevolutionary dynamics through the J/K transition. Although much of the signal is exclusively European, almost every higher tetrapod group was affected by a substantial decline across the boundary, culminating in the extinction of several important clades and the ecological release and radiation of numerous modern tetrapod groups. Variation in eustatic sea level was the primary driver of these patterns, controlling biodiversity through availability of shallow marine environments and via allopatric speciation on land.

  8. Jurassic carbonate reservoirs of the Amu Darya Basin, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan

    SciTech Connect

    Shein, V.S.; Fortunatova, N.K.; Neilson, J.E.

    1995-08-01

    The Amu Darya Basin is a world class hydrocarbon province. Current reserves estimates are 220 TCF of gas and 800 MMbbl of oil and condensate, 50% of which is reservoired in Late Jurassic carbonates. Exploration opportunities still exist in large parts of the basin which are relatively undrilled. Within the 100-600m thick carbonate sequence, reservoir facies include reefs, shelf grainstones and turbidite fares. The major seal are Kimmeridgian - Tithonian evaporates which are up to 1600m thick in the basin centre. Stratigraphic trapping is common and often enhanced by structural modifications. The reservoirs are in communication with a major gas-prone Early-Middle Jurassic source rock. Oil-prone source rocks are thought to occur in basinal sediments which are coeval with the Late Jurassic reservoirs. Carbonate sedimentation commenced during the Late Jurassic with the development of a ramp complex. This evolved into a rimmed shelf with barrier and pinnacle reefs. Several cycles of relative sea-level change (largely eustatic?) influence the carbonate ramp/shelf systems and effect the distribution of reservoir facies. Numerous empirical observations by VNIGNI scientists on carbonate successions have enabled them to develop mathematically calculated indices for facies and reservoir prediction, which have been applied successfully in the Amu Darya Basin. Reservoir quality in the limestones is strongly controlled by primary facies. Reefs and shelf grainstones display the best reservoir characteristics. Whilst many facies have good total porosity, it is only the reef and grainstone belts where connected porosity (with pore throats greater than 10um) becomes effective. Burial cements are rare. Freshwater solution and cementation has often improved or preserved primary porosity.

  9. Microfossil evidence for a mid-Jurassic squid egg-laying area in association with the Christian Malford Lagerstätte

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hart, Malcolm; de Jonghe, Alex; Duff, Keith; Page, Kevin; Price, Gregory; Smart, Christopher; Wilby, Philip

    2010-05-01

    ear' bones), squid hooks and foraminifera. Statoliths are the small, paired, aragonitic stones found in the heads of modern and fossil coleoids. Jurassic statoliths have yet to be described in any detail as there is only one reference to them in the literature (Clarke, 2003). The exceptional abundance of statoliths and squid hooks recorded in the samples from the core is thought to represent a Jurassic squid-breeding ground which existed for a substantial interval of late Callovian time. The annual spawning of female squids massively enlarges their ovaries and this breaks down the body wall leaving spent individuals to die. The lack of belemnites in the same strata suggests that the animals involved (unknown at present) did not possess a calcified "guard". The highest numbers of statoliths occur over a 3 m thickness of strata with the greatest abundance ~1 m below the Christian Malford Squid Bed. The numbers recorded in this part of the Phaeinum Zone are well above background levels in the rest of the Jurassic in the UK (Malcolm Clarke, pers.com.) where one has to wash several kg of sediment to recover <200 statoliths. The occurrence of abundant, though low diversity, foraminiferal assemblages in the same samples point to an oxic, though possibly stressed, environment. The significant proportion of deformed foraminifera in the assemblages appears to confirm that the environment was less than optimum. CLARKE, M.R. 2003. Potential of statoliths for interpreting coleoid evolution: A brief review. Berliner Paläobiol. Abh., 3, 37-47.

  10. Discovering the "-Ologies" on the Jurassic Coast

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Peacock, Alan

    2007-01-01

    The Jurassic Coast is Britain's only natural World Heritage site, a tangible time-line that takes one through 185 million years of history in 95 miles of coast. It provides individuals with a world-famous educational resource and an unrivalled outdoor classroom that has played a key role in the study of earth sciences. The author is keen to ignite…

  11. Jurassic evolution of the Tien-Shan

    SciTech Connect

    Bebeshev, I.I.

    1994-09-01

    Complex studies led to identification of three stages in Jurassic deposits. The stages reflect development periods of the studied deposits. Each stage is represented by a paleogeographic map that indicates the evolution of ancient landforms in the Tien-Shan region in time and space.

  12. Jurassic stratigraphy of the Wiggins Arch, Mississippi

    SciTech Connect

    Rhodes, J.A.; Maxwell, G.B. )

    1993-09-01

    Mobil and Shell jointly explored the Wiggins arch area in southern Mississippi from 1985 to 1991. The effort concentrated on the Jurassic Norphlet and Smackover formations. Two wells were drilled into Paleozoic crystalline rocks and one well into the Pine Hill formation. Two of these wells were located on the southern side of the Wiggins arch and provide significant data for interpreting Jurassic stratigraphy. The Mobil No. 1 U.S.A. well encountered a complete Jurassic section, but with some significantly different facies than those encountered by wells to the north. A granite wash section is the equivalent to the Frisco City formation previously only found 100 mi to the north-northeast. All 300 ft of Smackover is crystalline dolomite. The Norphlet section is entirely granite wash. The Pine Hill anhydrite is unusually thick and interpreted to be equivalent to the Louann Salt. Correlations to other wells on the Wiggins arch, particularly the Conoco No. 1 Higgins, indicate that the Jurassic can be divided into three transgressive events separated by the Norphlet/Pine Hill and Frisco City/Buckner regressive events.

  13. The palaeoclimatic significance of Eurasian Giant Salamanders (Cryptobranchidae: Zaissanurus, Andrias) - indications for elevated humidity in Central Asia during global warm periods (Eocene, late Oligocene warming, Miocene Climate Optimum)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasilyan, Davit; Böhme, Madelaine; Winklhofer, Michael

    2010-05-01

    Cryptobranchids represent a group of large sized (up to 1.8 m) tailed amphibians known since the Middle Jurassic (Gao & Shubin 2003). Two species are living today in eastern Eurasia: Andrias davidianus (China) and A. japonicus (Japan). Cenozoic Eurasian fossil giant salamanders are known with two genera and two or three species from over 30 localities, ranging from the Late Eocene to the Early Pliocene (Böhme & Ilg 2003). The Late Eocene species Zaissanurus beliajevae is restricted to the Central Asian Zaissan Basin (SE-Kazakhstan, 50°N, 85°E), whereas the Late Oligocene to Early Pliocene species Andrias scheuchzeri is distributed from Central Europe to the Zaissan Basin. In the latter basin the species occur during two periods; the latest Oligocene and the late Early to early Middle Miocene (Chkhikvadse 1982). Andrias scheuchzeri is osteological indistinguishable from both recent species, indicating a similar ecology (Westfahl 1958). To investigate the palaeoclimatic significance of giant salamanders we analyzed the climate within the present-day distribution area and at selected fossil localities with independent palaeoclimate record. Our results indicate that fossil and recent Andrias species occur in humid areas where the mean annual precipitation reach over 900 mm (900 - 1.300 mm). As a working hypothesis (assuming a similar ecology of Andrias and Zaissanurus) we interpret occurrences of both fossil Eurasian giant salamanders as indicative for humid palaeoclimatic conditions. Based on this assumption the Late Eocene, the latest Oligocene (late Oligocene warming) and the late Early to early Middle Miocene (Miocene Climatic Optimum) of Central Asia (Zaissan Basin) are periods of elevated humidity, suggesting a direct (positive) relationship between global climate and Central Asian humidity evolution. Böhme M., Ilg A. 2003: fosFARbase, www.wahre-staerke.com/ Chkhikvadze V.M. 1982. On the finding of fossil Cryptobranchidae in the USSR and Mongolia. Vertebrata

  14. Jurassic carbonate microfacies, sea-level changes and the Toarcian anoxic event in the Tethys Himalaya (South Tibet)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, Zhong; Hu, Xiumian; Garzanti, Eduardo

    2016-04-01

    Detailed microfacies analysis of carbonate rocks from the Tingri and Nyalam areas of South Tibet allowed us to reconstruct the evolution of sedimentary environments during the Early to Middle Jurassic. Based on texture, sedimentary structure, grain composition and fossil content of about 500 thin sections, 17 microfacies overall were identified, and three evolutionary stages were defined. Stage 1 (Rhaetian?-lower Sinemurian Zhamure Formation) was characterized by siliciclastic and mixed siliciclastic-carbonate sedimentation on a barrier shore environment, stage 2 (upper Sinemurian-Pliensbachian Pupuga Formation) by high-energy grainstones with rich benthic faunas thriving on a carbonate platform, and stage 3 (Toarcian-lower Bajocian Nieniexiongla Formation) by low-energy mudstones intercalated with frequent storm layers on a carbonate ramp. Besides, Carbon isotope analyses (δ13Ccarb and δ13Corg) were performed on the late Pliensbachian-early Toarcian interval, and the organic matter recorded a pronounced stepped negative excursion -4.5‰ corresponding to characteristics of the early Toarcian oceanic anoxic event globally, which began just below the stage 2-stage 3 facies shifting boundary. The comparison between the Tethys Himalaya (South Tibet) and the tropical/subtropical zones of the Western Tethys and Panthalassa was carried out to discuss the factors controlling sedimentary evolution. The change from stage 1 to stage 2 was possibly induced by sea-level rise, when the Tibetan Tethys Himalaya was located at tropical/subtropical latitudes in suitable climatic and ecological conditions for carbonate sedimentation. The abrupt change from stage 2 to stage 3 is interpreted as a consequence of the early Toarcian oceanic anoxic event, accompanied by obvious carbon-isotope negative excursion and sea-level rise. The failed recovery from the carbonate crisis in the early Bajocian, with continuing deposition on a low-energy carbonate ramp, is ascribed to the tectonic

  15. Fossil fuels -- future fuels

    SciTech Connect

    1998-03-01

    Fossil fuels -- coal, oil, and natural gas -- built America`s historic economic strength. Today, coal supplies more than 55% of the electricity, oil more than 97% of the transportation needs, and natural gas 24% of the primary energy used in the US. Even taking into account increased use of renewable fuels and vastly improved powerplant efficiencies, 90% of national energy needs will still be met by fossil fuels in 2020. If advanced technologies that boost efficiency and environmental performance can be successfully developed and deployed, the US can continue to depend upon its rich resources of fossil fuels.

  16. The Quaternary fossil-pollen record and global change

    SciTech Connect

    Grimm, E.C. . Research and Collections Center)

    1993-03-01

    Fossil pollen provide one of the most valuable records of vegetation and climate change during the recent geological past. Advantages of the fossil-pollen record are that deposits containing fossil pollen are widespread, especially in areas having natural lakes, that fossil pollen occurs in continuous stratigraphic sequences spanning millennia, and that fossil pollen occurs in quantitative assemblages permitting a multivariate approach for reconstructing past vegetation and climates. Because of stratigraphic continuity, fossil pollen records climate cycles on a wide range of scales, from annual to the 100 ka Milankovitch cycles. Receiving particular emphasis recently are decadal to century scale changes, possible from the sediments of varved lakes, and late Pleistocene events on a 5--10 ka scale possibly correlating with the Heinrich events in the North Atlantic marine record or the Dansgaard-Oeschger events in the Greenland ice-core record. Researchers have long reconstructed vegetation and climate by qualitative interpretation of the fossil-pollen record. Recently quantitative interpretation has developed with the aid of large fossil-pollen databases and sophisticated numerical models. In addition, fossil pollen are important climate proxy data for validating General Circulation Models, which are used for predicting the possible magnitude future climate change. Fossil-pollen data also contribute to an understanding of ecological issues associated with global climate change, including questions of how and how rapidly ecosystems might respond to abrupt climate change.

  17. Stratigraphic and Tectonic Evolution of the Jurassic Hazelton Trough-Bowser Basin, Northwest British Columbia, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gagnon, Jean-Francois

    The Hazelton trough--Bowser basin is a large sedimentary basin that developed on volcanic arc rocks of the Stikine terrane in northern British Columbia, Canada. Its fill mostly consists of the Lower to Middle Jurassic Hazelton Group and the Middle Jurassic to Lower Cretaceous Bowser Lake Group. Regional correlations indicate that the Hazelton Group can be divided in two distinct lithostratigraphic intervals separated in most places by an unconformity. The lower Hazelton Group (LHG) is dominated by arc-related volcanic rocks, whereas the upper Hazelton Group (UHG) contains mainly fine-grained clastic rocks and lesser bimodal rift-related volcanic rocks. Lowermost coarse-grained strata of the UHG, including the bioturbated and fossiliferous units of the Smithers Formation and the Spatisizi River Formation, record a transgressive trend consistent with thermal subsidence and relative sea-level rise. Transgression of the Stikine arc culminated with the establishment of deep-water conditions in the Late Toarcian-Early Aalenian, and deposition of the Quock Formation. Interbedded siliceous mudstone and rusty-weathered tuff of the Quock Formation are correlated throughout most of the basin, except in the Iskut River area on the northwestern margin of the basin, where contemporaneous strata of the Iskut River Formation are dominated by rift-related volcanic rocks and conglomerates. Inception of rifting in the Iskut River area constitutes an independent extensional event on Stikinia, and could be related to reorganization of tectonic plates during a protracted period of terrane accretion in the Middle Jurassic. Obduction of the Cache Creek terrane over Stikinia in early Middle Jurassic provided a new source of sediment, which led to accumulation of the Bowser Lake Group. The second pulse of subsidence observed at Todagin Mountain can be explained by sediment loading of the accommodation previously generated during extension of the Hazelton trough in Early Jurassic time.

  18. Discovery of Jurassic ammonite-bearing series in Jebel Bou Hedma (South-Central Tunisian Atlas): Implications for stratigraphic correlations and paleogeographic reconstruction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bahrouni, Néjib; Houla, Yassine; Soussi, Mohamed; Boughdiri, Mabrouk; Ali, Walid Ben; Nasri, Ahmed; Bouaziz, Samir

    2016-01-01

    Recent geological mapping undertaken in the Southern-Central Atlas of Tunisia led to the discovery of Jurassic ammonite-bearing series in the Jebel Bou Hedma E-W anticline structure. These series represent the Southernmost Jurassic rocks ever documented in the outcrops of the Tunisian Atlas. These series which outcrop in a transitional zone between the Southern Tunisian Atlas and the Chott basin offer a valuable benchmark for new stratigraphic correlation with the well-known Jurassic series of the North-South Axis of Central Tunisia and also with the Jurassic subsurface successions transected by petroleum wells in the study area. The preliminary investigations allowed the identification, within the most complete section outcropping in the center of the structure, of numerous useful biochronological and sedimentological markers helping in the establishment of an updated Jurassic stratigraphic framework chart of South-Western Tunisia. Additionally, the Late Jurassic succession documents syn-sedimentary features such as slumping, erosion and reworking of sediments and ammonite faunas that can be considered as strong witnesses of an important geodynamic event around the Jurassic-Cretaceous boundary. These stratigraphic and geodynamic new data make of the Jurassic of Jebel Bou Hedma a key succession for stratigraphic correlation attempt between Atlas Tunisian series and those currently buried in the Chott basin or outcropping in the Saharan platform. Furthermore, the several rich-ammonite identified horizons within the Middle and Upper Jurassic series constitute reliable time lines that can be useful for both paleogeographic and geodynamic reconstructions of this part of the North African Tethyan margin but also in the refinement of the potential migration routes for ammonite populations from the Maghrebian Southern Tethys to Arabia.

  19. Extreme adaptations for aquatic ectoparasitism in a Jurassic fly larva

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Jun; Wang, Bo; Engel, Michael S; Wappler, Torsten; Jarzembowski, Edmund A; Zhang, Haichun; Wang, Xiaoli; Zheng, Xiaoting; Rust, Jes

    2014-01-01

    The reconstruction of ancient insect ectoparasitism is challenging, mostly because of the extreme scarcity of fossils with obvious ectoparasitic features such as sucking-piercing mouthparts and specialized attachment organs. Here we describe a bizarre fly larva (Diptera), Qiyia jurassica gen. et sp. nov., from the Jurassic of China, that represents a stem group of the tabanomorph family Athericidae. Q. jurassica exhibits adaptations to an aquatic habitat. More importantly, it preserves an unusual combination of features including a thoracic sucker with six radial ridges, unique in insects, piercing-sucking mouthparts for fluid feeding, and crocheted ventral prolegs with upward directed bristles for anchoring and movement while submerged. We demonstrate that Q. jurassica was an aquatic ectoparasitic insect, probably feeding on the blood of salamanders. The finding reveals an extreme morphological specialization of fly larvae, and broadens our understanding of the diversity of ectoparasitism in Mesozoic insects. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.02844.001 PMID:24963142

  20. Latest Jurassic ammonoid provinces: Paleoecological implications using a general circulation model

    SciTech Connect

    Ross, C.A. ); Moore, G.T.; Hayashida, D.N. )

    1992-01-01

    The Lake Permian-early Mesozoic megacontinent Pangea was progressively fragmented by two rift systems that propagated westward out of the Tethys Sea and a third more persistent rift system that connected the Boreal and Tethys seas. By the late Tithonian, these major rift systems produced interconnected oceanic seaways that divided Pangea into four continental segments: North America, Eur-Asia, and northern and southern Gondwana. Increased rates of sea-floor spreading during the Jurassic reduced the volumetric capacity of ocean basins and produced a sea level rise through the period that culminated in the Lake Jurassic. The extensive marine shelf margins and epeiric seas hosted a widely distributed and diverse ammonoid fauna. By the early Tithonian, faunal communication existed between the northwestern Tethys Sea and the eastern Panthalassa Ocean through the proto-Gulf of Mexico. By the late Tithonian, faunal similarities indicate the opening of the proto-Indian Ocean so that northern and southern Gondwana had become separate continents. A region of the equatorial Tethys that includes most of the present Arabian Peninsular contains neuritic platform facies but lacks ammonoids. In high northern latitudes, cool to cold water faunas formed a Boreal Realm which extended westward across northern North America, Europe, and Siberia during middle and late Tithonian. Late Kimmeridgian and Tithonian ammonoid distributions when compared with Late Jurassic paleoclimate simulations show likely causal relationships with sea surface water temperatures and upwelling, and possibly shed light on the temperature limitations of ammonoids. Results from modeled seasonal sea surface temperature, sea ice distribution, precipitation-evaporation, and wind-driven upwelling permit the evaluation and quantification of paleoenvironmental factors favorable as well as pernicious for ammonoid distribution.

  1. The first definitive Middle Jurassic atoposaurid (Crocodylomorpha, Neosuchia), and a discussion on the genus T heriosuchus

    PubMed Central

    Young, Mark T.; Brusatte, Stephen L.; Challands, Thomas J.; Fraser, Nicholas C.; Clark, Neil D. L.; Ross, Dugald A.

    2015-01-01

    Atoposaurids were a clade of semiaquatic crocodyliforms known from the Late Jurassic to the latest Cretaceous. Tentative remains from Europe, Morocco, and Madagascar may extend their range into the Middle Jurassic. Here we report the first unambiguous Middle Jurassic (late Bajocian–Bathonian) atoposaurid: an anterior dentary from the Isle of Skye, Scotland, UK. A comprehensive review of atoposaurid specimens demonstrates that this dentary can be referred to T heriosuchus based on several derived characters, and differs from the five previously recognized species within this genus. Despite several diagnostic features, we conservatively refer it to T heriosuchus sp., pending the discovery of more complete material. As the oldest known definitively diagnostic atoposaurid, this discovery indicates that the oldest members of this group were small‐bodied, had heterodont dentition, and were most likely widespread components of European faunas. Our review of mandibular and dental features in atoposaurids not only allows us to present a revised diagnosis of T heriosuchus, but also reveals a great amount of variability within this genus, and indicates that there are currently five valid species that can be differentiated by unique combinations of dental characteristics. This variability can be included in future broad‐scale cladistics analyses of atoposaurids and closely related crocodyliforms, which promise to help untangle the complicated taxonomy and evolutionary history of Atoposauridae.  © 2015 The Authors. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of The Linnean Society of London PMID:27594716

  2. Mechanisms for high-frequency cyclicity in the Upper Jurassic limestone of northeastern Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, C.R.; Ward, W.C. ); Goldhammer, R.K. )

    1991-03-01

    The 520 m of Upper Jurassic Zuloaga Limestone exposed in the Sierra de Bunuelos in southern Coahuila comprise 118 cycles of peritidal carbonate rock deposited on a gently dipping ramp. Field studies with Fischer plots and time-series analysis suggest that a Milankovitchian glacioeustasy mechanism is inadequate to describe the Zuloaga cycles. Autocyclic progradation may have been the major influence on depositional cyclicity. Depositional cycles in the Zuloaga Formation typically are a few meters thick and asymmetric with subtidal wackestone and packstone grading upward into subtidal grainstone or into intertidal stromatolites. Width of the carbonate ramp is estimated to have been about 150 km. Sedimentation rates for these peritidal carbonate environments apparently exceeded subsidence rates inasmuch as most of the carbonate platform remained near sea level during Zuloaga deposition. The area was tectonically quiescent during the late Jurassic. Autocyclic shoreline progradation is a feasible mechanism for producing the high-frequency cycles, as suggested by (1) poor correlation with predicted Milankovitch periodicity shown by time-series analysis, (2) little evidence of subaerial exposure, (3) development of complete peritidal cycles, (4) general progradational sequences within each third-order unit, and (5) absence of polar glaciation during Late Jurassic.

  3. The first definitive Middle Jurassic atoposaurid (Crocodylomorpha, Neosuchia), and a discussion on the genus Theriosuchus.

    PubMed

    Young, Mark T; Tennant, Jonathan P; Brusatte, Stephen L; Challands, Thomas J; Fraser, Nicholas C; Clark, Neil D L; Ross, Dugald A

    2016-02-01

    Atoposaurids were a clade of semiaquatic crocodyliforms known from the Late Jurassic to the latest Cretaceous. Tentative remains from Europe, Morocco, and Madagascar may extend their range into the Middle Jurassic. Here we report the first unambiguous Middle Jurassic (late Bajocian-Bathonian) atoposaurid: an anterior dentary from the Isle of Skye, Scotland, UK. A comprehensive review of atoposaurid specimens demonstrates that this dentary can be referred to Theriosuchus based on several derived characters, and differs from the five previously recognized species within this genus. Despite several diagnostic features, we conservatively refer it to Theriosuchus sp., pending the discovery of more complete material. As the oldest known definitively diagnostic atoposaurid, this discovery indicates that the oldest members of this group were small-bodied, had heterodont dentition, and were most likely widespread components of European faunas. Our review of mandibular and dental features in atoposaurids not only allows us to present a revised diagnosis of Theriosuchus, but also reveals a great amount of variability within this genus, and indicates that there are currently five valid species that can be differentiated by unique combinations of dental characteristics. This variability can be included in future broad-scale cladistics analyses of atoposaurids and closely related crocodyliforms, which promise to help untangle the complicated taxonomy and evolutionary history of Atoposauridae.  © 2015 The Authors. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of The Linnean Society of London.

  4. Role of microbial mats in the fossilization of soft tissues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilby, Philip R.; Briggs, Derek E. G.; Bernier, Paul; Gaillard, Christian

    1996-09-01

    It has been speculated that microbial mats are an important agent in the fossilization of soft tissues, particularly when apatite (Ca5[CO3, PO4]3[OH, F]) is involved. This has been tested by chemical analyses of the Jurassic limestones of Cerin, France, where phosphatized soft tissues are abundant and are associated with unequivocal microbial mats. The sedimentary distribution of P, K, and Fe following deposition was controlled by the presence of the mats. P concentrations in the mats may approach 2.5 times those elsewhere in the sediment. The highest P concentrations correlate with the occurrence of phosphatized soft tissues. This is the first analytical evidence to demonstrate a fundamental role for microbial mats in the preservation of soft-bodied fossils.

  5. Lower limits of ornithischian dinosaur body size inferred from a new Upper Jurassic heterodontosaurid from North America

    PubMed Central

    Butler, Richard J.; Galton, Peter M.; Porro, Laura B.; Chiappe, Luis M.; Henderson, Donald M.; Erickson, Gregory M.

    2010-01-01

    The extremes of dinosaur body size have long fascinated scientists. The smallest (<1 m length) known dinosaurs are carnivorous saurischian theropods, and similarly diminutive herbivorous or omnivorous ornithischians (the other major group of dinosaurs) are unknown. We report a new ornithischian dinosaur, Fruitadens haagarorum, from the Late Jurassic of western North America that rivals the smallest theropods in size. The largest specimens of Fruitadens represent young adults in their fifth year of development and are estimated at just 65–75 cm in total body length and 0.5–0.75 kg body mass. They are thus the smallest known ornithischians. Fruitadens is a late-surviving member of the basal dinosaur clade Heterodontosauridae, and is the first member of this clade to be described from North America. The craniodental anatomy and diminutive body size of Fruitadens suggest that this taxon was an ecological generalist with an omnivorous diet, thus providing new insights into morphological and palaeoecological diversity within Dinosauria. Late-surviving (Late Jurassic and Early Cretaceous) heterodontosaurids are smaller and less ecologically specialized than Early (Late Triassic and Early Jurassic) heterodontosaurids, and this ecological generalization may account in part for the remarkable 100-million-year-long longevity of the clade. PMID:19846460

  6. Infrared Spectra of Fossils,

    DTIC Science & Technology

    fossil’s surface is accessible to the analyzing beams. The technique is potentially valuable for the examination of special samples of palaeontological and archaeological interest. Keywords include: Photothermal effect.

  7. Natural Product Molecular Fossils.

    PubMed

    Falk, Heinz; Wolkenstein, Klaus

    2017-01-01

    The natural products synthesized by organisms that were living a long time ago gave rise to their molecular fossils. These can consist of either the original unchanged compounds or they may undergo peripheral transformations in which their skeletons remain intact. In cases when molecular fossils can be traced to their organismic source, they are termed "geological biomarkers".This contribution describes apolar and polar molecular fossils and, in particular biomarkers, along the lines usually followed in organic chemistry textbooks, and points to their bioprecursors when available. Thus, the apolar compounds are divided in linear and branched alkanes followed by alicyclic compounds and aromatic and heterocyclic molecules, and, in particular, the geoporphyrins. The polar molecular fossils contain as functional groups or constituent units ethers, alcohols, phenols, carbonyl groups, flavonoids, quinones, and acids, or are polymers like kerogen, amber, melanin, proteins, or nucleic acids. The final sections discuss the methodology used and the fundamental processes encountered by the biomolecules described, including diagenesis, catagenesis, and metagenesis.

  8. Jurassic hydrocarbon seep-carbonates in the High Atlas Basin (Morocco)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bodin, Stephane; Kothe, Tim; Rose, Johannes; Krencker, Francois-Nicolas; Kabiri, Lahcen

    2015-04-01

    In the central High Atlas Basin of Morocco, the occurrence of Jurassic hydrocarbon seeps is observed in two distinct horizons: (1) the uppermost Polymorphum ammonite zone (Lower Toarcian) and (2) the Sauzei (eq. Propiquans) ammonite zone (Lower Bajocian). The Toarcian seep-carbonates are made of 5 - 6cm in diameter, half-spherical concretions that surround two vertical and closely spaced tubes, parallel to each other. Each tube is less than 1cm in diameter and filled with late diagenetic cements. The tubes are interpreted as burrow trace fossil. The concretions are embedded within an organic-matter rich interval and resemble to the Tisoa siphonalis concretions described in the upper Pliensbachian of Western Europe. Carbon isotope values decrease from the rim to the center of the concretion (from 1 to -7 per mil) whereas oxygen isotope values remain stable around -7 per mil. The C-isotope values of the concretion rim are similar to the bulk carbon isotope values of the embedding rocks. The most negative C-isotope values indicate that the carbon source of the carbonate precipitated in the centre of the concretion is likely sourced from the organoclastic sulfate reduction zone. The Bajocian seep-carbonates are observed within the dark calcareous mudstone of the Sauzei zone. One peculiarly well-exposed seep system shows the presence of a plumbing system leading to a 20cm thick carbonate crust showing the occasional occurrence of chimney structures on its upper part. The high abundance of serpulids clusters within the carbonate crust shows that it was precipitated at the water-sediment interface. The pipe structures of the plumbing system are composed of an external micritic rim enclosing a central tube that can be up to 12cm large. A complex, multi-phased infilling is observed in the inner part of the pipe and separated from the rim by a millimetric pyritized crust. Carbon isotope values are comprised between -20 per mil and -8 per mil for the micritic rim, whereas the

  9. Palynostratigraphy and vegetation history of the Triassic-Jurassic transition in East Greenland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mander, L.; Kürschner, W. M.; McElwain, J. C.

    2012-04-01

    Plant macrofossils from East Greenland provide vital information on the response of terrestrial vegetation to major environmental change at the Triassic-Jurassic transition (Tr-J; 200 Ma). However, owing to the lack of a robust stratigraphic correlation between the exact horizons containing plant macrofossils in East Greenland ('plant beds') and Tr-J boundary sections in well-studied areas such as Europe, it is difficult to fit the results of palaeoecological investigations in East Greenland into the wider picture of Tr-J biotic change. Recent work has highlighted major differences in the types of plants represented in sporomorph assemblages and macrofossil assemblages from the plant beds in East Greenland, but the taphonomic processes responsible for these differences remain poorly explained. Additionally, the exact nature of Tr-J vegetation change as recorded by sporomorphs from the plant beds is somewhat unclear. In order to address these issues we have undertaken a palynological study of a Tr-J boundary section at Astartekløft, East Greenland. We have generated an updated palynostratigraphic scheme and vegetation history for this locality and have integrated these with existing carbon isotope records. Samples for palynological analysis were collected from precisely the same stratigraphic horizons as plant macrofossils from Astartekløft, allowing the results of palaeoecological analyses based on macrofossils at this locality to be directly compared with palaeoecological analyses of other fossil organisms in different regions. Our analyses highlight four local sporomorph assemblage zones that are compositionally distinct from each other at Astartekløft. The extremely low abundance of Classopollis pollen in all samples, and the pronounced decline in Ricciisporites tuberculatus in the Late Rhaetian are particularly striking features of the sporomorph record of Tr-J vegetation at Astartekløft. Plants with small stature that do not shed fronds by abscission, such

  10. New evidence of shared dinosaur across Upper Jurassic Proto-North Atlantic: Stegosaurus from Portugal.

    PubMed

    Escaso, Fernando; Ortega, Francisco; Dantas, Pedro; Malafaia, Elisabete; Pimentel, Nuno L; Pereda-Suberbiola, Xabier; Sanz, José Luis; Kullberg, José Carlos; Kullberg, María Carla; Barriga, Fernando

    2007-05-01

    More than one century after its original description by Marsh in 1877, we report in this paper the first uncontroversial evidence of a member of the genus Stegosaurus out of North America. The specimen consists of a partial skeleton from the Upper Jurassic of Portugal, herein considered as Stegosaurus cf. ungulatus. The presence of this plated dinosaur in the upper Kimmeridgian-lower Tithonian Portuguese record and synchronic levels of the Morrison Formation of North America reinforces previous hypothesis of a close relationship between these two areas during the Late Jurassic. This relationship is also supported by geotectonic evidences indicating high probability of an episodic corridor between the Newfoundland and Iberian landmasses. Together, Portuguese Stegosaurus discovery and geotectonic inferences could provide a scenario with episodical faunal contact among North Atlantic landmasses during the uppermost Kimmeridgian-lowermost Tithonian (ca. 148-153 Ma ago).

  11. New evidence of shared dinosaur across Upper Jurassic Proto-North Atlantic: Stegosaurus from Portugal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Escaso, Fernando; Ortega, Francisco; Dantas, Pedro; Malafaia, Elisabete; Pimentel, Nuno L.; Pereda-Suberbiola, Xabier; Sanz, José Luis; Kullberg, José Carlos; Kullberg, María Carla; Barriga, Fernando

    2007-05-01

    More than one century after its original description by Marsh in 1877, we report in this paper the first uncontroversial evidence of a member of the genus Stegosaurus out of North America. The specimen consists of a partial skeleton from the Upper Jurassic of Portugal, herein considered as Stegosaurus cf. ungulatus. The presence of this plated dinosaur in the upper Kimmeridgian-lower Tithonian Portuguese record and synchronic levels of the Morrison Formation of North America reinforces previous hypothesis of a close relationship between these two areas during the Late Jurassic. This relationship is also supported by geotectonic evidences indicating high probability of an episodic corridor between the Newfoundland and Iberian landmasses. Together, Portuguese Stegosaurus discovery and geotectonic inferences could provide a scenario with episodical faunal contact among North Atlantic landmasses during the uppermost Kimmeridgian-lowermost Tithonian (ca. 148-153 Ma ago).

  12. Reduced plumage and flight ability of a new Jurassic paravian theropod from China.

    PubMed

    Godefroit, Pascal; Demuynck, Helena; Dyke, Gareth; Hu, Dongyu; Escuillié, François; Claeys, Philippe

    2013-01-01

    Feathered theropods were diverse in the Early Cretaceous Jehol Group of western Liaoning Province, China. Recently, anatomically distinct feathered taxa have been discovered in the older Middle-Late Jurassic Tiaojishan Formation in the same region. Phylogenetic hypotheses including these specimens have challenged the pivotal position of Archaeopteryx in bird phylogeny. Here we report a basal troodontid from the Tiaojishan Formation that resembles Anchiornis, also from Jianchang County (regarded as sister-taxa). The feathers of Eosinopteryx are less extensive on the limbs and tail than Anchiornis and other deinonychosaurians. With reduced plumage and short uncurved pedal claws, Eosinopteryx would have been able to run unimpeded (with large foot remiges cursorial locomotion was likely problematic for Anchiornis). Eosinopteryx increases the known diversity of small-bodied dinosaurs in the Jurassic, shows that taxa with similar body plans could occupy different niches in the same ecosystem and suggests a more complex picture for the origin of flight.

  13. A new arboreal haramiyid shows the diversity of crown mammals in the Jurassic period.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Xiaoting; Bi, Shundong; Wang, Xiaoli; Meng, Jin

    2013-08-08

    A major unsolved problem in mammalian evolution is the origin of Allotheria, including Multituberculata and Haramiyida. Multituberculates are the most diverse and best known Mesozoic era mammals and ecologically resemble rodents, but haramiyids are known mainly from isolated teeth, hampering our search for their phylogenetic relationships. Here we report a new haramiyid from the Jurassic period of China, which is, to our knowledge the largest reported so far. It has a novel dentition, a mandible resembling advanced multituberculates and postcranial features adapted for arboreal life. Our phylogenetic analysis places Haramiyida within crown Mammalia, suggesting the origin of crown Mammalia in the Late Triassic period and diversification in the Jurassic, which contrasts other estimated divergence times of crown Mammalia. The new haramiyid reveals additional mammalian features of the group, helps to identify other haramiyids represented by isolated teeth, and shows again that, regardless of various phylogenetic scenarios, a complex pattern of evolution involving many convergences and/or reversals existed in Mesozoic mammals.

  14. Correlation of the Jurassic through Oligocene Stratigraphic Units of Trinidad and Northeastern Venezuela

    SciTech Connect

    Algar, S.; Erikson, J.P.

    1995-04-01

    The Jurassic through Oligocene stratigraphies of Trinidad and the Serrenia del Interior of eastern Venezuela exhibit many similarities because of their proximity on the passive continental margins of northeastern South America. A slightly later subsidence in eastern Venezuela, and the generally deeper-water sedimentation in Trinidad, is interpreted to be the result of a serration of the original rift margin, producing an eastern Venezuela promontory and Trinidadian re-entrant. We interpret these serrations to be the result of oblique (NW-SE) spreading of North and South America during Middle and late Jurassic time. The stratigraphies of northeastern Venezuela and Trinidad contrast in the Hauterivan-Albian interval, with dynamic shallow shelf environments prevailing in the Serrenia del Interior and deeper marine submarine-fan deposition in Trinidad. Both areas develop middle to Upper Cretaceous source rocks during a time of eustatic sea level high and widespread oceanic anoxia. 15 refs., 4 fig.

  15. Paleoenvironments of the Jurassic and Cretaceous Oceans: Selected Highlights

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ogg, J. G.

    2007-12-01

    There are many themes contributing to the sedimentation history of the Mesozoic oceans. This overview briefly examines the roles of the carbonate compensation depth (CCD) and the associated levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide, of the evolution of marine calcareous microplankton, of major transgressive and regressive trends, and of super-plume eruptions. Initiation of Atlantic seafloor spreading in the Middle Jurassic coincided with an elevated carbonate compensation depth (CCD) in the Pacific-Tethys mega-ocean. Organic-rich sediments that would become the oil wealth of regions from Saudi Arabia to the North Sea were deposited during a continued rise in CCD during the Oxfordian-early Kimmeridgian, which suggests a possible increase in carbon dioxide release by oceanic volcanic activity. Deep-sea deposits in near-equatorial settings are dominated by siliceous shales or cherts, which reflect the productivity of siliceous microfossils in the tropical surface waters. The end-Jurassic explosion in productivity by calcareous microplankton contributed to the lowering of the CCD and onset of the chalk ("creta") deposits that characterize the Tithonian and lower Cretaceous in all ocean basins. During the mid-Cretaceous, the eruption of enormous Pacific igneous provinces (Ontong Java Plateau and coeval edifices) increased carbon dioxide levels. The resulting rise in CCD terminated chalk deposition in the deep sea. The excess carbon was progressively removed in widespread black-shale deposits in the Atlantic basins and other regions - another major episode of oil source rock. A major long-term transgression during middle and late Cretaceous was accompanied by extensive chalk deposition on continental shelves and seaways while the oceanic CCD remained elevated. Pacific guyots document major oscillations (sequences) of global sea level superimposed on this broad highstand. The Cretaceous closed with a progressive sea-level regression and lowering of the CCD that again enabled

  16. High-precision U-Pb geochronology of the Jurassic Yanliao Biota from Jianchang (western Liaoning Province, China): Age constraints on the rise of feathered dinosaurs and eutherian mammals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chu, Zhuyin; He, Huaiyu; Ramezani, Jahandar; Bowring, Samuel A.; Hu, Dongyu; Zhang, Lijun; Zheng, Shaolin; Wang, Xiaolin; Zhou, Zhonghe; Deng, Chenglong; Guo, Jinghui

    2016-10-01

    The Yanliao Biota of northeastern China comprises the oldest feathered dinosaurs, transitional pterosaurs, as well as the earliest eutherian mammals, multituberculate mammals, and new euharamiyidan species that are key elements of the Mesozoic biotic record. Recent discovery of the Yanliao Biota in the Daxishan section near the town of Linglongta, Jianchang County in western Liaoning Province have greatly enhanced our knowledge of the transition from dinosaurs to birds, primitive to derived pterosaurs, and the early evolution of mammals. Nevertheless, fundamental questions regarding the correlation of fossil-bearing strata, rates of dinosaur and mammalian evolution, and their relationship to environmental change in deep time remain unresolved due to the paucity of precise and accurate temporal constraints. These limitations underscore the importance of placing the rich fossil record of Jianchang within a high-resolution chronostratigraphic framework that has thus far been hampered by the relatively low precision of in situ radioisotopic dating techniques. Here we present high-precision U-Pb zircon geochronology by the chemical abrasion isotope dilution thermal ionization mass spectrometry (CA-ID-TIMS) from three interstratified ash beds previously dated by secondary-ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) technique. The results constrain the key fossil horizons of the Daxishan section to an interval spanning 160.89 to 160.25 Ma with 2σ analytical uncertainties that range from ±46 to ±69 kyr. These data place the Yanliao Biota from Jianchang in the Oxfordian Stage of the Late Jurassic, and mark the Daxishan section as the site of Earth's oldest precisely dated feathered dinosaurs and eutherian mammals.

  17. A golden orb-weaver spider (Araneae: Nephilidae: Nephila) from the Middle Jurassic of China.

    PubMed

    Selden, Paul A; Shih, ChungKun; Ren, Dong

    2011-10-23

    Nephila are large, conspicuous weavers of orb webs composed of golden silk, in tropical and subtropical regions. Nephilids have a sparse fossil record, the oldest described hitherto being Cretaraneus vilaltae from the Cretaceous of Spain. Five species from Neogene Dominican amber and one from the Eocene of Florissant, CO, USA, have been referred to the extant genus Nephila. Here, we report the largest known fossil spider, Nephila jurassica sp. nov., from Middle Jurassic (approx. 165 Ma) strata of Daohugou, Inner Mongolia, China. The new species extends the fossil record of the family by approximately 35 Ma and of the genus Nephila by approximately 130 Ma, making it the longest ranging spider genus known. Nephilidae originated somewhere on Pangaea, possibly the North China block, followed by dispersal almost worldwide before the break-up of the supercontinent later in the Mesozoic. The find suggests that the palaeoclimate was warm and humid at this time. This giant fossil orb-weaver provides evidence of predation on medium to large insects, well known from the Daohugou beds, and would have played an important role in the evolution of these insects.

  18. Fossilized nuclei and chromosomes reveal 180 million years of genomic stasis in royal ferns.

    PubMed

    Bomfleur, Benjamin; McLoughlin, Stephen; Vajda, Vivi

    2014-03-21

    Rapidly permineralized fossils can provide exceptional insights into the evolution of life over geological time. Here, we present an exquisitely preserved, calcified stem of a royal fern (Osmundaceae) from Early Jurassic lahar deposits of Sweden in which authigenic mineral precipitation from hydrothermal brines occurred so rapidly that it preserved cytoplasm, cytosol granules, nuclei, and even chromosomes in various stages of cell division. Morphometric parameters of interphase nuclei match those of extant Osmundaceae, indicating that the genome size of these reputed "living fossils" has remained unchanged over at least 180 million years-a paramount example of evolutionary stasis.

  19. Fossil Simulation in the Classroom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hoehn, Robert G.

    1977-01-01

    Describes classroom science demonstrations and experiments that simulate the process of fossil formation. Lists materials, procedures and suggestions for successful activities. Includes ten student activities (coral fossils, leaf fossils, leaf scars, carbonization, etc.). Describes a fossil game in which students work in pairs. (CS)

  20. Basin architecture, salt tectonics, and Upper Jurassic structural styles, DeSoto Canyon Salt basin, northeastern Gulf of Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    MacRae, G.; Watkins, J.S. )

    1993-10-01

    Despite the Gulf of Mexico being a mature hydrocarbon province, the least understood aspects of the basin's geologic history are undoubtedly those concerning pre-Middle Jurassic tectonic events and their implication for the tectonic and sedimentary evolution of the region. Despite awareness of the importance of continental extension during rifting, there are few quantitative studies that show the influence of crustal extension on basin architecture, the distribution of salt, and Late Jurassic sedimentation in the DeSoto Canyon Salt basin, northeastern Gulf of Mexico. Application of simplified isostatic principles using a lithospheric buoyancy model allow quantification of total tectonic subsidence, crustal thickness, crustal extension, and crust type. An average crustal thickness of 25 km and crustal extension [beta] values between 1.4 and 1.8 suggest the sedimentary succession is underlain by moderately stretched and attenuated continental crust. The widespread distribution and geometry of dipping subsalt reflectors, particularly in the shelfal areas, provide evidence for a Late Triassic-Early Jurassic phase of rifting prior to deposition of Middle Jurassic salt. Although deposition occurred in a slowly subsiding, stable marginal setting, salt movement and associated growth faulting are the most significant tectonic elements affecting the stratigraphic and structural development of the overlying strata.

  1. Deep burial dolomitization driven by plate collision: Evidence from strontium-isotopes of Jurassic Arab IV dolomites from offshore Qatar

    SciTech Connect

    Vahrenkamp, V.C.; Taylor, S.R. )

    1991-03-01

    The use of strontium-isotope ratios of dolomites to constrain timing and mechanism of diagenesis has been investigated on Jurassic Arab IV dolomites from offshore Qatar. Reservoir quality is determined by two types of dolomites, which were differentiated geochemically (cathodoluminescence, fluid inclusions, and carbon and oxygen stable isotopes): (1) stratigraphically concordant sucrosic dolomites with high porosity formed during early near-surface diagenesis (Jurassic) and (2) stratigraphically discordant cylindrical bodies of massive, porosity-destroying dolomites formed late during deep burial diagenesis (Eocene-Pliocene). Detailed Sr-isotope analysis of dolomites from the Arab IV confirms an Early Jurassic age of the sucrosic, high porosity dolomites ({sup 87}Sr/{sup 86}SR = 0.70707 for NBS 987 = 0.71024) with magnesium and strontium being derived from Jurassic seawater. Late Tertiary compressional orogeny of the Zagros belt to the north is proposed to have caused large-scale squeezing of fluids from the pore system of sedimentary rocks. A regional deep fluid flow system developed dissolving infra-Cambrian evaporites upflow and causing large-scale deep burial dolomitization downflow.

  2. Sedimentological, climatic and environmental changes during the Early Jurassic (Hettangian-Pliensbachian) on the northern Tethyan margin (Switzerland)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schöllhorn, Iris; Foellmi, Karl; adatte, Thierry

    2016-04-01

    The Early Jurassic interval witnessed different phases of paleoenvironmental change, starting with the end-Triassic mass extinction event, c. 201.4 Ma ago, which was marked by terrestrial ecosystem turnover, up to 50% loss in marine biodiversity and large turnovers in global geochemical cycles linked to the onset of Central Atlantic Magmatic Province volcanism (Raup et Sepkosky, 1982 ; Hesselbo et al., 2002 ; Deenen et al., 2010). This time interval saw equally a phase of major climate change near the Pliensbachian-Toarcian boundary, which was followed by the Early Toarcian oceanic anoxic episode (e.g., Suan et al., 2010). Previous studies mainly focused on these major and short-lived events, while the remaining intervals of the Early Jurassic received significantly less attention. Therefore, in this study, we examine the sedimentological, geochemical and environmental changes between these events on the northern Tethyan margin (Swiss Jura). With this purpose, a wide array of geochemical analyses (carbon isotope, Rock-Eval, phosphorus content, mineralogy, trace and major element content and clay analyses) and sedimentary observations has been performed on four sections and cores (Frick, Riniken, Pfaffnau and Kreuzlingen). We observed two depositional systems: (1) the Schambelen Member (lower Hettangian) and the Frick Mb. (middle Upper Sinemurian), which are characterised by organic-rich shales intercalated by tempestites; and (2) the Beggingen Member (Upper Hettangian to Lower Sinemurian) and the Grünscholz, Breitenmatt and Rietheim Members (upper Upper Sinemurian to Pliensbachian), which are composed of carbonates marked by the presence of hiati, condensed beds, phosphate- and fossil-rich strata, and erosional features, which testify to a dynamic environment characterised by overall low sediment-accumulation rates. The clay fraction, composed mainly of kaolinite, chlorite and illite, was controlled by various parameters. The rise of kaolinite in the Late

  3. Position of the Triassic-Jurassic boundary and timing of the end-Triassic extinctions on land: Data from the Moenave Formation on the southern Colorado Plateau, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lucas, S.G.; Tanner, L.H.; Donohoo-Hurley, L.; Geissman, J.W.; Kozur, H.W.; Heckert, A.B.; Weems, R.E.

    2011-01-01

    Strata of the Moenave Formation on and adjacent to the southern Colorado Plateau in Utah-Arizona, U.S.A., represent one of the best known and most stratigraphically continuous, complete and fossiliferous terrestrial sections across the Triassic-Jurassic boundary. We present a synthesis of new biostratigraphic and magnetostratigraphic data collected from across the Moenave Formation outcrop belt, which extends from the St. George area in southwestern Utah to the Tuba City area in northern Arizona. These data include palynomorphs, conchostracans and vertebrate fossils (including footprints) and a composite polarity record based on four overlapping magnetostratigraphic sections. Placement of the Triassic-Jurassic boundary in strata of the Moenave Formation has long been imprecise and debatable, but these new data (especially the conchostracans) allow us to place the Triassic-Jurassic boundary relatively precisely in the middle part of the Whitmore Point Member of the Moenave Formation, stratigraphically well above the highest occurrence of crurotarsan body fossils or footprints. Correlation to marine sections based on this placement indicates that major terrestrial vertebrate extinctions preceded marine extinctions across the Triassic-Jurassic boundary and therefore were likely unrelated to the Central Atlantic Magmatic Province (CAMP) volcanism. ?? 2011 Elsevier B.V.

  4. Palaeoclimatic oscillations in the Pliensbachian (Early Jurassic) of the Asturian Basin (Northern Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gómez, Juan J.; Comas-Rengifo, María J.; Goy, Antonio

    2016-05-01

    One of the main controversial themes in palaeoclimatology involves elucidating whether climate during the Jurassic was warmer than the present day and if it was the same over Pangaea, with no major latitudinal gradients. There has been an abundance of evidence of oscillations in seawater temperature throughout the Jurassic. The Pliensbachian (Early Jurassic) constitutes a distinctive time interval for which several seawater temperature oscillations, including an exceptional cooling event, have been documented. To constrain the timing and magnitude of these climate changes, the Rodiles section of the Asturian Basin (Northern Spain), a well exposed succession of the uppermost Sinemurian, Pliensbachian and Lower Toarcian deposits, has been studied. A total of 562 beds were measured and sampled for ammonites, for biochronostratigraphical purposes, and for belemnites, to determine the palaeoclimatic evolution through stable isotope studies. Comparison of the recorded latest Sinemurian, Pliensbachian and Early Toarcian changes in seawater palaeotemperature with other European sections allows characterization of several climatic changes that are likely of a global extent. A warming interval partly coinciding with a δ13Cbel negative excursion was recorded at the Late Sinemurian. After a "normal" temperature interval, with temperatures close to average values of the Late Sinemurian-Early Toarcian period, a new warming interval containing a short-lived positive δ13Cbel peak, developed during the Early-Late Pliensbachian transition. The Late Pliensbachian represents an outstanding cooling interval containing a δ13Cbel positive excursion interrupted by a small negative δ13Cbel peak. Finally, the Early Toarcian represented an exceptional warming period, which has been pointed out as being responsible for the prominent Early Toarcian mass extinction.

  5. Reconstructing Carotenoid-Based and Structural Coloration in Fossil Skin.

    PubMed

    McNamara, Maria E; Orr, Patrick J; Kearns, Stuart L; Alcalá, Luis; Anadón, Pere; Peñalver, Enrique

    2016-04-25

    Evidence of original coloration in fossils provides insights into the visual communication strategies used by ancient animals and the functional evolution of coloration over time [1-7]. Hitherto, all reconstructions of the colors of reptile integument and the plumage of fossil birds and feathered dinosaurs have been of melanin-based coloration [1-6]. Extant animals also use other mechanisms for producing color [8], but these have not been identified in fossils. Here we report the first examples of carotenoid-based coloration in the fossil record, and of structural coloration in fossil integument. The fossil skin, from a 10 million-year-old colubrid snake from the Late Miocene Libros Lagerstätte (Teruel, Spain) [9, 10], preserves dermal pigment cells (chromatophores)-xanthophores, iridophores, and melanophores-in calcium phosphate. Comparison with chromatophore abundance and position in extant reptiles [11-15] indicates that the fossil snake was pale-colored in ventral regions; dorsal and lateral regions were green with brown-black and yellow-green transverse blotches. Such coloration most likely functioned in substrate matching and intraspecific signaling. Skin replicated in authigenic minerals is not uncommon in exceptionally preserved fossils [16, 17], and dermal pigment cells generate coloration in numerous reptile, amphibian, and fish taxa today [18]. Our discovery thus represents a new means by which to reconstruct the original coloration of exceptionally preserved fossil vertebrates.

  6. Grazing trails formed by soldier fly larvae (Diptera: Stratiomyidae) and their paleoenvironmental and paleoecological implications for the fossil record

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mangano, M.G.; Buatois, L.A.; Claps, G.L.

    1996-01-01

    Recent trails formed by soldier fly larvae (Diptera: Stratiomyidae) were examined in a shallow pond in the floodplain of a braided river in Jujuy Province, northwestern Argentina. Collected specimens were identified as Stratiomys convexa van der Wulp. Simple, irregularly meandering trails were produced across the surface of a muddy-silty substrate. Since soldier fly larvae extend their caudal respiratory tube to the water-air interface, they are restricted to extremely shallow water. The presence of benthic algal remains within the mouthparts of the larvae suggests a feeding habit of algal grazing. If preserved, these trails would be included in the ichnogenus Helminthopsis, a common element in ancient freshwater ichnofaunas. Helminthopsis preserved in pond and lacustrine margin deposits younger than Late Jurassic is regarded as one possible trace fossil analogue of the trails documented herein. Additionally, it is suggested that larvae of many aquatic Diptera with similar ecologic restrictions are potential tracemakers of Helminthopsis and other simple trails in these environments, particularly in post-Paleozoic deposits. Studies of modern shallow aquatic habitats and reexamination of the ichnologic record stress the importance of fly larvae as tracemakers in lake margin and pond ecosystems. Ecologic requirements of soldier fly larvae make them inappropriate analogues of Helminthopsis tracemakers in deeper water, lacustrine settings. ?? 1996 OPA (Overseas Publishers Association) Amsterdam B.V. Published in The Netherlands by Harwood Academic Publishers GmbH.

  7. The earliest fossil record of the animals and its significance.

    PubMed

    Budd, Graham E

    2008-04-27

    The fossil record of the earliest animals has been enlivened in recent years by a series of spectacular discoveries, including embryos, from the Ediacaran to the Cambrian, but many issues, not least of dating and interpretation, remain controversial. In particular, aspects of taphonomy of the earliest fossils require careful consideration before pronouncements about their affinities. Nevertheless, a reasonable case can now be made for the extension of the fossil record of at least basal animals (sponges and perhaps cnidarians) to a period of time significantly before the beginning of the Cambrian. The Cambrian explosion itself still seems to represent the arrival of the bilaterians, and many new fossils in recent years have added significant data on the origin of the three major bilaterian clades. Why animals appear so late in the fossil record is still unclear, but the recent trend to embrace rising oxygen levels as being the proximate cause remains unproven and may even involve a degree of circularity.

  8. Middle Jurassic - Early Cretaceous rifting on the Chortis Block in Honduras: Implications for proto-Caribbean opening (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rogers, R. D.; Emmet, P. A.

    2009-12-01

    Regional mapping integrated with facies analysis, age constraints and airborne geophysical data reveal WNW and NE trends of Middle Jurassic to Early Cretaceous basins which intersect in southeast Honduras that we interpret as the result of rifting associated with the breakup of the Americas and opening of the proto-Caribbean seaway. The WNW-trending rift is 250 km long by 90 km wide and defined by a basal 200 to 800 m thick sequence of Middle to Late Jurassic fluvial channel and overbank deposits overlain by transgressive clastic shelf strata. At least three sub-basins are apparent. Flanking the WNW trending rift basins are fault bounded exposures of the pre-Jurassic continental basement of the Chortis block which is the source of the conglomeratic channel facies that delineate the axes of the rifts. Cretaceous terrigenous strata mantle the exposed basement-cored rift flanks. Lower Cretaceous clastic strata and shallow marine limestone strata are dominant along this trend indicating that post-rift related subsidence continued through the Early Cretaceous. The rifts coincide with a regional high in the total magnetic intensity data. We interpret these trends to reflect NNE-WSW extension active from the Middle Jurassic through Early Cretaceous. These rifts were inverted during Late Cretaceous shortening oriented normal to the rift axes. To the east and at a 120 degree angle to the WNW trending rift is the 300 km long NE trending Guayape fault system that forms the western shoulder of the Late Jurassic Agua Fria rift basin filled by > 2 km thickness of clastic marine shelf and slope strata. This NE trending basin coincides with the eastern extent of the surface exposure of continental basement rocks and a northeast-trending fabric of the Jurassic (?) metasedimentary basement rocks. We have previously interpreted the eastern basin to be the Jurassic rifted margin of the Chortis block with the Guayape originating as a normal fault system. These two rifts basin intersect

  9. Zeolites replacing plant fossils in the Denver formation, Lakewood, Colorado.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Modreski, P.J.; Verbeek, E.R.; Grout, M.A.

    1984-01-01

    Well-developed crystals of heulandite and stilbite, within fossil wood, occur in sedimentary rocks in Lakewood, Jefferson County. The rocks belong to the Denver formation, a locally fossiliferous deposit of fluvial claystone, siltstone, sandstone and conglomerate, containing some volcanic mudflows (andesitic) of late Cretaceous to Palaeocene age. Altered volcanic glass released Na and Ca into the ground-water and subsequently zeolites were crystallized in the open spaces between grains and within fossil plant structures. Minor pyrite, quartz (jasper), calcite and apatite also occur as replacements of fossil wood. Similar zeolite occurrences in other areas are reviewed.-R.S.M.

  10. Where to Dig for Fossils: Combining Climate-Envelope, Taphonomy and Discovery Models

    PubMed Central

    Block, Sebastián; Saltré, Frédérik; Rodríguez-Rey, Marta; Fordham, Damien A.; Unkel, Ingmar; Bradshaw, Corey J. A.

    2016-01-01

    Fossils represent invaluable data to reconstruct the past history of life, yet fossil-rich sites are often rare and difficult to find. The traditional fossil-hunting approach focuses on small areas and has not yet taken advantage of modelling techniques commonly used in ecology to account for an organism’s past distributions. We propose a new method to assist finding fossils at continental scales based on modelling the past distribution of species, the geological suitability of fossil preservation and the likelihood of fossil discovery in the field, and apply it to several genera of Australian megafauna that went extinct in the Late Quaternary. Our models predicted higher fossil potentials for independent sites than for randomly selected locations (mean Kolmogorov-Smirnov statistic = 0.66). We demonstrate the utility of accounting for the distribution history of fossil taxa when trying to find the most suitable areas to look for fossils. For some genera, the probability of finding fossils based on simple climate-envelope models was higher than the probability based on models incorporating current conditions associated with fossil preservation and discovery as predictors. However, combining the outputs from climate-envelope, preservation, and discovery models resulted in the most accurate predictions of potential fossil sites at a continental scale. We proposed potential areas to discover new fossils of Diprotodon, Zygomaturus, Protemnodon, Thylacoleo, and Genyornis, and provide guidelines on how to apply our approach to assist fossil hunting in other continents and geological settings. PMID:27027874

  11. Where to Dig for Fossils: Combining Climate-Envelope, Taphonomy and Discovery Models.

    PubMed

    Block, Sebastián; Saltré, Frédérik; Rodríguez-Rey, Marta; Fordham, Damien A; Unkel, Ingmar; Bradshaw, Corey J A

    2016-01-01

    Fossils represent invaluable data to reconstruct the past history of life, yet fossil-rich sites are often rare and difficult to find. The traditional fossil-hunting approach focuses on small areas and has not yet taken advantage of modelling techniques commonly used in ecology to account for an organism's past distributions. We propose a new method to assist finding fossils at continental scales based on modelling the past distribution of species, the geological suitability of fossil preservation and the likelihood of fossil discovery in the field, and apply it to several genera of Australian megafauna that went extinct in the Late Quaternary. Our models predicted higher fossil potentials for independent sites than for randomly selected locations (mean Kolmogorov-Smirnov statistic = 0.66). We demonstrate the utility of accounting for the distribution history of fossil taxa when trying to find the most suitable areas to look for fossils. For some genera, the probability of finding fossils based on simple climate-envelope models was higher than the probability based on models incorporating current conditions associated with fossil preservation and discovery as predictors. However, combining the outputs from climate-envelope, preservation, and discovery models resulted in the most accurate predictions of potential fossil sites at a continental scale. We proposed potential areas to discover new fossils of Diprotodon, Zygomaturus, Protemnodon, Thylacoleo, and Genyornis, and provide guidelines on how to apply our approach to assist fossil hunting in other continents and geological settings.

  12. Cerium anomaly at microscale in fossils.

    PubMed

    Gueriau, Pierre; Mocuta, Cristian; Bertrand, Loïc

    2015-09-01

    Patterns in rare earth element (REE) concentrations are essential instruments to assess geochemical processes in Earth and environmental sciences. Excursions in the "cerium anomaly" are widely used to inform on past redox conditions in sediments. This proxy resources to the specificity of cerium to adopt both the +III and +IV oxidation states, while most rare earths are purely trivalent and share very similar reactivity and transport properties. In practical terms, the level of cerium anomaly is established through elemental point quantification and profiling. All these models rely on a supposed homogeneity of the cerium oxidation state within the samples. However, this has never been demonstrated, whereas the cerium concentration can significantly vary within a sample, as shown for fossils, which would vastly complicate interpretation of REE patterns. Here, we report direct micrometric mapping of Ce speciation through synchrotron X-ray absorption spectroscopy and production of local rare earth patterns in paleontological fossil tissues through X-ray fluorescence mapping. The sensitivity of the approach is demonstrated on well-preserved fishes and crustaceans from the Late Cretaceous (ca. 95 million years (Myr) old). The presence of Ce under the +IV form within the fossil tissues is attributed to slightly oxidative local conditions of burial and agrees well with the limited negative cerium anomaly observed in REE patterns. The [Ce(IV)]/[Ce(tot)] ratio appears remarkably stable at the microscale within each fossil and is similar between fossils from the locality. Speciation maps were obtained from an original combination of synchrotron microbeam X-ray fluorescence, absorption spectroscopy, and diffraction, together with light and electron microscopy. This work also highlights the need for more systematic studies of cerium geochemistry at the microscale in paleontological contexts, in particular across fossil histologies.

  13. Jurassic Cordilleran dike swarm-shear zones: Implications for the Nevadan orogeny and North American plate motion

    SciTech Connect

    Wolf, M.B.; Saleeby, J.B. )

    1992-08-01

    A cogenetic and coeval tonalitic and mafic dike swarm has been identified within a southern fragment (the Owens Mountain area) of the western Foothills terrane (California). The dikes were mylonitized and transposed (rotated into subparallel orientation) during emplacement, from 155 to 148 Ma (U-Pb zircon data), which coincides in time with the Nevadan orogeny. Steeply southeast-plunging fold axes and S-fold geometries indicate a sinistral-sense of shear, possibly with some dip-slip motion as well. This shear zone may be the southern and possibly deeper extension of the Bear Mountains fault zone. This and other Late Jurassic Cordilleran dike swarms record a complex pattern of sinistral-sense transtension-transpression that developed at the apparent-polar-wander J2 cusp ([approximately] 150 Ma) and during subsequent, rapid, northwestward acceleration of North America. The Late Jurassic Nevadan orogeny is a manifestation of these dramatic changes in magnitude and direction of North American motion.

  14. Post-sedimentation transformations of Lower-Middle Jurassic sandstones of Great Caucases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tuchkova, M. I.

    2003-04-01

    POST-SEDIMENTATION TRANSFORMATIONS OF LOWER-MIDDLE JURASSIC SANDSTONES OF GREAT CAUCASES M.I. Tuchkova Geological Institute Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia tuchkova@geo.tv-sign.ru/ /Fax: (095) 2310443 Generalization of author’s and literature data is based on the analysis of sandstones cement and structure, composition and politypism of clay minerals and index of mica crystallinity. Fore zones of sandstone transformations are distinguished for Lower-Middle Jurassic sedimentary complexes of Great Caucases: 1) zone of neogenic chlorite and muscovite (index of crystallinity IC=1.0-2.0 mm) with wide development of epidote; solubility, blastic and spinulose structures, 2) zone of neogenic chlorite and sericite (IC=2.0-3.0 mm); solubility and spinulose structures, 3) zone of neogenic hydromica (IC=2.5-3.5 mm), kaolinite and/or montmorillonite minerals with microstylolite, conformal and conformal-regenerational contacts between grains, 4) zone of kaolinite and/or montmorillonite, mixed-layered and chlorite minerals with carbonate cement of pores filling, ferugination and conformal and microstylolite contacts between grains. Index of crystallinity of mica mineral IC=3.5-5.5 mm. In modern geological structure the region with most intensive transformations (zone 1) is traced in sandstones of here and there preserved Sinemurian-Lower Pliensbachian and Toarcian deposits in the belt of Jurassic deposits of the southern slope of Great Caucases. The extent of rock transformation increases northward and southward from the axial zone of Great Caucases. Represented zonality doesn’t depend on deposits thickness and doesn’t coincide with stratigraphycal borders. Post-sedimentation zonality of Jurassic deposits originated as a result of stress during the period of folding at the end of Middle and the beginning of Late Jurassic following the thrusting of northern flank of Great Caucases basin onto its axial part. The rocks of lowest part of Jurassic deposits of the

  15. Bajocian-Bathonian (Middle Jurassic) sea-level changes in northeastern Egypt: Synthesis and further implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruban, Dmitry A.; Sallam, Emad S.

    2016-08-01

    The global eustatic developments can benefit significantly from properly acquired regional information. Summarizing the available interpretations of the relative sea-level changes from two areas in northeastern Egypt, namely Gebel Maghara and Khashm El-Galala, allows better understanding of the Middle Jurassic sea-level changes. It is established that the Bajocian-Bathonian relative sea-level changes in these areas were coherent. The magnitude of changes was lower in the Bajocian than in the Bathonian. Significant sea-level rises occurred at the Bajocian-Bathonian and middle-late Bathonian transitions, and there was a clear tendency toward sea-level rise throughout the studied time interval. This evidence favors one of the two alternative global eustatic reconstructions that implies "stable" position of the shoreline in the Bajocian and general tendency to eustatic rise throughout the Jurassic. The tectonic regime of northeastern Egypt in the Middle Jurassic provided for strong eustatic control of the relative sea-level changes. The possible influence of hotspot activity is questionable. Filling the accommodation space with materials derived from the eroded continent may explain some sea-level falls that are regionally documented.

  16. The earliest mollusc dominated seep fauna from the Early Jurassic of Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaim, Andrzej; Jenkins, Robert; Parent, Horacio; Garrido, Alberto; Moriya, Kazuhiro

    2015-04-01

    The earliest mollusc dominated seep fauna from the Early Jurassic of Argentina Andrzej Kaim, Robert G. Jenkins, Horacio Parent, Alberto C. Garrido The hydrocarbon seep deposits are known from Early Jurassic of Argentina since the report of Gomez-Perez (2003). The latter author identified very negative δ13C values (down to -33) and several fabrics typical for seep carbonates. Nevertheless she identified no macrofaunal assemblages apart from worm tubes. We re-visited the locality of Gomez-Perez (named here La Elina) and we were able to collect several molluscs associated with the seep carbonate. The most common and diversified are molluscs and worm tubes. We identified at least three species of gastropods, including the oldest-known species of neomphalids, lucinid and protobranch bivalves and numerous ammonoids. Unlike another known Early Jurassic seep from Oregon and the only Late Triassic seep (also from Oregon) there are no brachiopods associated with this seep. Therefore we consider the seep at La Elina as the oldest seep of modern aspect where the fauna is dominated by molluscs and not brachiopods.

  17. Reconstruction of Jurassic paleogeography of part of southwestern North America: Some relevant factors

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, T.H.; Kohn, M. . Dept. of Geology and Planetary Science)

    1993-04-01

    A tectonic restoration has been initiated with the objective of reconstructing the paleogeography of the middle Jurassic volcanic and plutonic belt in part of southwestern North America west and southwest of the Colorado Plateau. Consideration of displacements of stratigraphic or tectonostratigraphic elements related to a structure or a system of structures include: (1) strike-slip translation along faults of the San Andreas system, especially those affecting rocks of the western Mojave desert region; (2) tertiary extensions west of the perimeter of the Colorado Plateau; (3) cretaceous contraction recorded by supracrustal rocks; (4) cretaceous lateral displacement, specifically as recorded by the Mojave-Snowy Lake fault; and (5) Late Jurassic lateral displacement along the Mojave-Sonora megashear. Cretaceous and Jurassic magmatic rocks are assumed to have formed about zones of subduction near the margins of converging plates. These rocks generally form crudely linear bands which may be used to monitor regional translations. Other linear elements useful in recording regional strain are facies lines and terrane boundaries, especially those related to steep lateral faults.

  18. Astronomical constraints on the duration of the Early Jurassic Pliensbachian Stage and global climatic fluctuations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruhl, Micha; Hesselbo, Stephen P.; Hinnov, Linda; Jenkyns, Hugh C.; Xu, Weimu; Riding, James B.; Storm, Marisa; Minisini, Daniel; Ullmann, Clemens V.; Leng, Melanie J.

    2016-12-01

    The Early Jurassic was marked by multiple periods of major global climatic and palaeoceanographic change, biotic turnover and perturbed global geochemical cycles, commonly linked to large igneous province volcanism. This epoch was also characterised by the initial break-up of the super-continent Pangaea and the opening and formation of shallow-marine basins and ocean gateways, the timing of which are poorly constrained. Here, we show that the Pliensbachian Stage and the Sinemurian-Pliensbachian global carbon-cycle perturbation (marked by a negative shift in δ13 C of 2- 4 ‰), have respective durations of ∼8.7 and ∼2 Myr. We astronomically tune the floating Pliensbachian time scale to the 405 Kyr eccentricity solution (La2010d), and propose a revised Early Jurassic time scale with a significantly shortened Sinemurian Stage duration of 6.9 ± 0.4 Myr. When calibrated against the new time scale, the existing Pliensbachian seawater 87Sr/86Sr record shows relatively stable values during the first ∼2 Myr of the Pliensbachian, superimposed on the long-term Early Jurassic decline in 87Sr/86Sr. This plateau in 87Sr/86Sr values coincides with the Sinemurian-Pliensbachian boundary carbon-cycle perturbation. It is possibly linked to a late phase of Central Atlantic Magmatic Province (CAMP) volcanism that induced enhanced global weathering of continental crustal materials, leading to an elevated radiogenic strontium flux to the global ocean.

  19. Jurassic through Oligocene pre-basin stratigraphy in the Santa Maria basin area, California

    SciTech Connect

    Fritsche, A.E. ); Yamashiro, D.A. )

    1991-02-01

    Compilation from published records of 30 pre-Miocene stratigraphic columns in the Santa Maria basin area of California (west of the Sur-Nacimiento fault and north of the Santa Ynez fault) reveals two basement units and 22 overlying sedimentary units. This article displays the stratigraphic columns and includes descriptions and environmental interpretations of the 24 rock units. The basement rocks include an Upper Jurassic ophiolite sequence and the Lower Jurassic through Upper Cretaceous Franciscan Complex. Most of the 22 sedimentary units were deposited along a subduction-type margin prior to development of the late Tertiary Santa Maria basin. Overlying and generally in fault contact with the basement rocks are four Upper Jurassic through Lower Cretaceous units that were deposited in basin plain and out continental margin environments. Unconformably overlying these units are eight Upper Cretaceous units that were deposited in a wide range of environments that ranged from trench, slope, and submarine fan up through shelf and nonmarine fluvial environments. Lower Tertiary units onlap unconformably onto the Cretaceous rocks and were deposited only in the southernmost part of the area. These rocks include lower Eocene basin plain and outer submarine fan deposits; middle Eocene mid-fan and slope deposits; upper Eocene inner fan, shelf, shoreface, and foreshore deposits; and Oligocene shoreface, foreshore, and nonmarine fluvial deposits.

  20. Upper Jurassic carbonate/evaporite shelf, south Alabama and west Florida

    SciTech Connect

    Moore, B.R.

    1986-05-01

    The association of Upper Jurassic carbonates and evaporites in south Alabama and west Florida defines a brining upward and inward sequence that is indicative of deposition on an increasingly evaporitic marine shelf. Structural features that bound this evaporitic shelf were the Pensacola arch, the South Mississippi platform, and the State Line flexure. Paleo-drainage of the surrounding highlands also affected shelf salinities as fresh waters were funneled into the Covington and Manila Embayments. During the Late Jurassic, marine carbonates and evaporites of the Smackover and Lower Haynesville (Buckner) Formations were deposited over Middle Jurassic Norphlet clastics that accumulated in arid continental and marginal-marine environments. Initially, Smackover carbonate deposition was pervasive across the shallow shelf. Later, as a result of increasing water salinities, contemporaneous precipitation of central-shelf evaporites and basin-edge carbonates occurred. Maximum restriction of the basin and the culmination of subaqueous deposition resulted in the formation of a basin-wide lower Haynesville salt unit. The overlying upper Haynesville strata represents a shift to subaerial environments. Application of a shelf-basin evaporite model explains the spatial and temporal lithologic relationships observed within the study area. Onlap of evaporites over porous carbonates, due to brining-upward processes, suggest that large-scale stratigraphic traps exist within the Smackover Formation in a sparsely explored part of the basin.

  1. Advanced fossil energy utilization

    SciTech Connect

    Shekhawat, D.; Berry, D.; Spivey, J.; Pennline, H.; Granite, E.

    2010-01-01

    This special issue of Fuel is a selection of papers presented at the symposium ‘Advanced Fossil Energy Utilization’ co-sponsored by the Fuels and Petrochemicals Division and Research and New Technology Committee in the 2009 American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) Spring National Meeting Tampa, FL, on April 26–30, 2009.

  2. Trace Fossil Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hasiotis, Stephen T.

    2009-05-01

    Today, the study of trace fossils—ichnology—is an important subdiscipline of geology at the interface of paleontology and sedimentology, mostly because of the efforts of Adolf Seilacher. His ability to synthesize various aspects of ichnology and produce a hierarchy of marine ichna and sedimentary facies has made ichnology useful worldwide in interpreting paleodiversity, rates of sedimentation, oxygenation of bottom water and sediment pore water, and depositional energy. Seilacher's book Trace Fossil Analysis provides a glimpse into the mind, methodology, and insights of the father of modern ichnology, generated from his course notes as a professor and a guest lecturer. The title sounds misleading—readers looking for up-to-date principles and approaches to trace fossil analysis in marine and continental strata will be disappointed. In his preface, however, Seilacher clearly gives direction for the use of his text: “This is a course book—meaning that it is intended to confer not knowledge, but skill.” Thus, it is not meant as a total compilation of all trace fossils, ichnotaxonomy, ichnological interpretations, applications, or the most relevant and up-to-date references. Rather, it takes the reader on a personal journey, explaining how trace fossils are understood in the context of their three-dimensional (3-D) morphology and sedimentary facies.

  3. Palaeoclimate: CO2 and late Palaeozoic glaciation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myers, Timothy S.

    2016-11-01

    Large glacial-interglacial fluctuations occurred during the late Palaeozoic. Geochemical and fossil data show these cycles were marked by coincident shifts in the carbon cycle and terrestrial biosphere.

  4. Prolonged Permian Triassic ecological crisis recorded by molluscan dominance in Late Permian offshore assemblages.

    PubMed

    Clapham, Matthew E; Bottjer, David J

    2007-08-07

    The end-Permian mass extinction was the largest biotic crisis in the history of animal life, eliminating as many as 95% of all species and dramatically altering the ecological structure of marine communities. Although the causes of this pronounced ecosystem shift have been widely debated, the broad consensus based on inferences from global taxonomic diversity patterns suggests that the shift from abundant brachiopods to dominant molluscs was abrupt and largely driven by the catastrophic effects of the end-Permian mass extinction. Here we analyze relative abundance counts of >33,000 fossil individuals from 24 silicified Middle and Late Permian paleocommunities, documenting a substantial ecological shift to numerical dominance by molluscs in the Late Permian, before the major taxonomic shift at the end-Permian mass extinction. This ecological change was coincident with the development of fluctuating anoxic conditions in deep marine basins, suggesting that numerical dominance by more tolerant molluscs may have been driven by variably stressful environmental conditions. Recognition of substantial ecological deterioration in the Late Permian also implies that the end-Permian extinction was the climax of a protracted environmental crisis. Although the Late Permian shift to molluscan dominance was a pronounced ecological change, quantitative counts of 847 Carboniferous-Cretaceous collections from the Paleobiology Database indicate that it was only the first stage in a stepwise transition that culminated with the final shift to molluscan dominance in the Late Jurassic. Therefore, the ecological transition from brachiopods to bivalves was more protracted and complex than their simple Permian-Triassic switch in diversity.

  5. Multiple episodes of dolomitization and dolomite recrystallization during shallow burial in Upper Jurassic shelf carbonates: eastern Swabian Alb, southern Germany

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reinhold, C.

    1998-10-01

    The Upper Jurassic of the eastern Swabian Alb is composed of oolitic platform sands with associated microbe-siliceous sponge mounds at the platform margins. They are surrounded by argillaceous or calcareous mudstones and marl-limestone alternations, deposited in adjacent marl basins. Partial to complete dolomitization is predominantly confined to the mound facies. Six types of dolomite, as well as one type of ankerite, document a complex diagenetic history during shallow burial with multiple episodes of dolomite formation and recrystallization. The earliest massive matrix dolomitization is Ca-rich, has slightly depleted oxygen isotope values relative to Late Jurassic seawater, and carbon isotopic values in equilibrium with Late Jurassic seawater. This initial massive matrix dolomitization occurred during latest Jurassic to earliest Cretaceous and is related to pressure dissolution during very shallow burial at temperatures of at least 50°C. Hydrologic conditions and mass-balance calculations indicate that burial compaction provided sufficient fluids for dolomitization. Mg is derived from negligibly modified seawater, that was expelled from the adjacent off-reef strata into the mound facies. Position of the mounds along the platform margins controlled the distribution of the shallow-burial dolomite. Covariant trends between textural modification, increasing stoichiometry, partial changes in trace element content (Mn, Fe, Sr) and depletion in stable isotopes as well as distinctive CL pattern illustrate two recrystallization phases of the precursor matrix dolomite during further burial at elevated temperatures. Strong Sr enrichment of the second phase of recrystallized dolomite is ascribed to Sr-rich meteoric waters descending from overlying aragonite-bearing reef limestones or evaporite-bearing peritidal carbonates. Late-stage coarsely crystalline dolomite cements occur as vug and fracture fillings and formed during burial. Ankerite, associated with sulphide and

  6. The northernmost and latest occurrence of the fossil porcupine (Hystrix brachyura vinogradovi Argyropulo, 1941) in the Altai Mountains in the Late Pleistocene (ca. 32,000-41,000 cal BP)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuzmin, Yaroslav V.; Kosintsev, Pavel A.; Vasiliev, Sergei K.; Fadeeva, Tatyana V.; Hodgins, Gregory W. L.

    2017-04-01

    Several new finds of the Late Pleistocene porcupine (Hystrix brachyura vinogradovi) in the Altai Mountains of southern Siberia and the Urals occur far north of previously assigned range for porcupine. These finds have necessitated a renewed study of this species's chronology and spatial distribution. We conclude that the oldest records of this porcupine in the Ural Mountains date to MIS 5e, and its geographic range possibly included also the Altai at that time. Directly radiocarbon-dated porcupine bones in the Altai fall in MIS 3 (ca. 32,000-41,000 cal BP). It is the northernmost record of this species and the youngest find outside its current geographic range.

  7. Early evolution and historical biogeography of fishflies (Megaloptera: Chauliodinae): implications from a phylogeny combining fossil and extant taxa.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xingyue; Wang, Yongjie; Shih, Chungkun; Ren, Dong; Yang, Ding

    2012-01-01

    Fishflies (Corydalidae: Chauliodinae) are one of the main groups of the basal holometabolous insect order Megaloptera, with ca. 130 species distributed worldwide. A number of genera from the Southern Hemisphere show remarkably disjunctive distributions and are considered to be the austral remnants or "living fossils" of Gondwana. Hitherto, the evolutionary history of fishflies remains largely unexplored due to limited fossil record and incomplete knowledge of phylogenetic relationships. Here we describe two significant fossil species of fishflies, namely Eochauliodes striolatus gen. et sp. nov. and Jurochauliodes ponomarenkoi Wang & Zhang, 2010 (original designation for fossil larvae only), from the Middle Jurassic of Inner Mongolia, China. These fossils represent the earliest fishfly adults. Furthermore, we reconstruct the first phylogenetic hypothesis including all fossil and extant genera worldwide. Three main clades within Chauliodinae are recognized, i.e. the Dysmicohermes clade, the Protochauliodes clade, and the Archichauliodes clade. The phylogenetic and dispersal-vicariance (DIVA) analyses suggest Pangaean origin and global distribution of fishflies before the Middle Jurassic. The generic diversification of fishflies might have happened before the initial split of Pangaea, while some Gondwanan-originated clades were likely to be affected by the sequential breakup of Pangaea. The modern fauna of Asian fishflies were probably derived from their Gondwanan ancestor but not the direct descendents of the Mesozoic genera in Asia.

  8. Sustainability of Fossil Fuels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lackner, K. S.

    2002-05-01

    For a sustainable world economy, energy is a bottleneck. Energy is at the basis of a modern, technological society, but unlike materials it cannot be recycled. Energy or more precisely "negentropy" (the opposite of entropy) is always consumed. Thus, one either accepts the use of large but finite resources or must stay within the limits imposed by dilute but self-renewing resources like sunlight. The challenge of sustainable energy is exacerbated by likely growth in world energy demand due to increased population and increased wealth. Most of the world still has to undergo the transition to a wealthy, stable society with the near zero population growth that characterizes a modern industrial society. This represents a huge unmet demand. If ten billion people were to consume energy like North Americans do today, world energy demand would be ten times higher. In addition, technological advances while often improving energy efficiency tend to raise energy demand by offering more opportunity for consumption. Energy consumption still increases at close to the 2.3% per year that would lead to a tenfold increase over the course of the next century. Meeting future energy demands while phasing out fossil fuels appears extremely difficult. Instead, the world needs sustainable or nearly sustainable fossil fuels. I propose the following definition of sustainable under which fossil fuels would well qualify: The use of a technology or resource is sustainable if the intended and unintended consequences will not force its abandonment within a reasonable planning horizon. Of course sustainable technologies must not be limited by resource depletion but this is only one of many concerns. Environmental impacts, excessive land use, and other constraints can equally limit the use of a technology and thus render it unsustainable. In the foreseeable future, fossil fuels are not limited by resource depletion. However, environmental concerns based on climate change and other environmental

  9. Ants and the fossil record.

    PubMed

    LaPolla, John S; Dlussky, Gennady M; Perrichot, Vincent

    2013-01-01

    The dominance of ants in the terrestrial biosphere has few equals among animals today, but this was not always the case. The oldest ants appear in the fossil record 100 million years ago, but given the scarcity of their fossils, it is presumed they were relatively minor components of Mesozoic insect life. The ant fossil record consists of two primary types of fossils, each with inherent biases: as imprints in rock and as inclusions in fossilized resins (amber). New imaging technology allows ancient ant fossils to be examined in ways never before possible. This is particularly helpful because it can be difficult to distinguish true ants from non-ants in Mesozoic fossils. Fossil discoveries continue to inform our understanding of ancient ant morphological diversity, as well as provide insights into their paleobiology.

  10. Adaptations for marine habitat and the effect of Triassic and Jurassic predator pressure on development of decompression syndrome in ichthyosaurs.

    PubMed

    Rothschild, B M; Xiaoting, Z; Martin, L D

    2012-06-01

    Decompression syndrome (caisson disease or the "the bends") resulting in avascular necrosis has been documented in mosasaurs, sauropterygians, ichthyosaurs, and turtles from the Middle Jurassic to Late Cretaceous, but it was unclear that this disease occurred as far back as the Triassic. We have examined a large Triassic sample of ichthyosaurs and compared it with an equally large post-Triassic sample. Avascular necrosis was observed in over 15% of Late Middle Jurassic to Cretaceous ichthyosaurs with the highest occurrence (18%) in the Early Cretaceous, but was rare or absent in geologically older specimens. Triassic reptiles that dive were either physiologically protected, or rapid changes of their position in the water column rare and insignificant enough to prevent being recorded in the skeleton. Emergency surfacing due to a threat from an underwater predator may be the most important cause of avascular necrosis for air-breathing divers, with relative frequency of such events documented in the skeleton. Diving in the Triassic appears to have been a "leisurely" behavior until the evolution of large predators in the Late Jurassic that forced sudden depth alterations contributed to a higher occurrence of bends.

  11. Adaptations for marine habitat and the effect of Triassic and Jurassic predator pressure on development of decompression syndrome in ichthyosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rothschild, B. M.; Xiaoting, Z.; Martin, L. D.

    2012-06-01

    Decompression syndrome (caisson disease or the "the bends") resulting in avascular necrosis has been documented in mosasaurs, sauropterygians, ichthyosaurs, and turtles from the Middle Jurassic to Late Cretaceous, but it was unclear that this disease occurred as far back as the Triassic. We have examined a large Triassic sample of ichthyosaurs and compared it with an equally large post-Triassic sample. Avascular necrosis was observed in over 15 % of Late Middle Jurassic to Cretaceous ichthyosaurs with the highest occurrence (18 %) in the Early Cretaceous, but was rare or absent in geologically older specimens. Triassic reptiles that dive were either physiologically protected, or rapid changes of their position in the water column rare and insignificant enough to prevent being recorded in the skeleton. Emergency surfacing due to a threat from an underwater predator may be the most important cause of avascular necrosis for air-breathing divers, with relative frequency of such events documented in the skeleton. Diving in the Triassic appears to have been a "leisurely" behavior until the evolution of large predators in the Late Jurassic that forced sudden depth alterations contributed to a higher occurrence of bends.

  12. Gondwana to Asia: Plate tectonics, paleogeography and the biological connectivity of the Indian sub-continent from the Middle Jurassic through latest Eocene (166 35 Ma)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ali, Jason R.; Aitchison, Jonathan C.

    2008-06-01

    Using the most up-to-the-date information available, we present a considerably revised plate tectonic and paleogeographic model for the Indian Ocean bordering continents, from Gondwana's Middle Jurassic break-up through to India's collision with Asia in the middle Cenozoic. The landmass framework is then used to explore the sometimes complex and occasionally counter-intuitive patterns that have been observed in the fossil and extant biological records of India, Madagascar, Africa and eastern Eurasia, as well those of the more distal continents. Although the paleogeographic model confirms the traditional view that India became progressively more isolated from the major landmasses during the Cretaceous and Paleocene, it is likely that at various times minor physiographic features (principally ocean islands) provided causeways and/or stepping-stone trails along which land animals could have migrated to/from the sub-continent. Aside from a likely link (albeit broken by several marine gaps) to Africa for much of this time (it is notable, that the present-day/recent biota of Madagascar indicates that the ancestors of five land-mammal orders, plus bats, crossed the > 400-km-wide Mozambique Channel at different times in the Cenozoic), it is possible that the Kerguelen Plateau connected India and Australia-Antarctica in the mid-Cretaceous (approximately 115-90 Ma). Later, the Seychelles-Mascarene Plateau and nearby elevated sea-floor areas could have allowed faunas to pass between southern India and Madagascar in the Late Cretaceous, from around 85-65 Ma, with an early Cenozoic extension to this path forming as a result of the Reunion hot-spot trace islands growing on the ocean floor to the SSW of India. The modelling also suggests that India's northward passage towards Asia, with eventual collision at 35 Ma, involved the NE corner of the sub-continent making a glancing contact with Sumatra, followed by Burma from ~ 57 Ma (late Paleocene) onwards, a scenario which is

  13. Architectural studies of Jurassic-Cretaceous fluvial units, Colorado Plateau

    SciTech Connect

    Miall, A.D.; Bromley, M.H.; Cowan, E.J.; Turner-Peterson, C.E.

    1989-03-01

    A sixfold hierarchy of architectural elements and bounding surfaces evolved from outcrop studies of three fluvial units: Westwater Canyon member (WCM), Morrison Formation, Upper Jurassic; Torrivio sandstone member (TSM), Gallup Sandstone, Upper Cretaceous, northwestern New Mexico; and Kayenta Formation (KF), Lower Jurassic, southwestern Colorado. This hierarchy is discussed.

  14. Fossilized excreta associated to dinosaurs in Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Souto, P. R. F.; Fernandes, M. A.

    2015-01-01

    This work provides an updated register of the main occurrences of fossilized excreta (coprolites and urolites) associated with dinosaurs found in the Brazil. The goal is to provide a relevant guide to the interpretation of the environment in the context of Gondwana. In four geographic areas, the excreta are recovered from Cretaceous sedimentary deposits in outcrops of the Bauru and São Luis basins and the Upper Jurassic aeolian deposits of the Parana Basin in the state of São Paulo. The coprolites were analyzed by X-ray diffraction and X-ray fluorescence methods. The results of these analyses reveal compositions that differ from the surrounding matrix, indicating a partial substitution of the organic material due to the feeding habits of the producers. Additionally, we describe the urolite excavations in epirelief and hyporelief, the result of gravitational flow the impact from urine jets on sand. These are associated with ornithopod and theropod dinosaur footprints preserved in the aeolian flagstones of the Botucatu Formation, Parana Basin.

  15. Ichnological evidence of Megalosaurid Dinosaurs Crossing Middle Jurassic Tidal Flats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Razzolini, Novella L.; Oms, Oriol; Castanera, Diego; Vila, Bernat; Santos, Vanda Faria Dos; Galobart, Àngel

    2016-08-01

    A new dinosaur tracksite in the Vale de Meios quarry (Serra de Aire Formation, Bathonian, Portugal)preserves more than 700 theropod tracks. They are organized in at least 80 unidirectional trackways arranged in a bimodal orientation pattern (W/NW and E/SE). Quantitative and qualitative comparisons reveal that the large tridactyl, elongated and asymmetric tracks resemble the typical Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous Megalosauripus ichnogenus in all morphometric parameters. Few of the numerous tracks are preserved as elite tracks while the rest are preserved as different gradients of modified true tracks according to water content, erosive factors, radial fractures and internal overtrack formations. Taphonomical determinations are consistent with paleoenvironmental observations that indicate an inter-tidal flat located at the margin of a coastal barrier. The Megalosauripus tracks represent the oldest occurrence of this ichnotaxon and are attributed to large megalosaurid dinosaurs. Their occurrence in Vale de Meios tidal flat represents the unique paleoethological evidence of megalosaurids moving towards the lagoon, most likley during the low tide periods with feeding purposes.

  16. Ichnological evidence of Megalosaurid Dinosaurs Crossing Middle Jurassic Tidal Flats.

    PubMed

    Razzolini, Novella L; Oms, Oriol; Castanera, Diego; Vila, Bernat; Santos, Vanda Faria Dos; Galobart, Àngel

    2016-08-19

    A new dinosaur tracksite in the Vale de Meios quarry (Serra de Aire Formation, Bathonian, Portugal)preserves more than 700 theropod tracks. They are organized in at least 80 unidirectional trackways arranged in a bimodal orientation pattern (W/NW and E/SE). Quantitative and qualitative comparisons reveal that the large tridactyl, elongated and asymmetric tracks resemble the typical Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous Megalosauripus ichnogenus in all morphometric parameters. Few of the numerous tracks are preserved as elite tracks while the rest are preserved as different gradients of modified true tracks according to water content, erosive factors, radial fractures and internal overtrack formations. Taphonomical determinations are consistent with paleoenvironmental observations that indicate an inter-tidal flat located at the margin of a coastal barrier. The Megalosauripus tracks represent the oldest occurrence of this ichnotaxon and are attributed to large megalosaurid dinosaurs. Their occurrence in Vale de Meios tidal flat represents the unique paleoethological evidence of megalosaurids moving towards the lagoon, most likley during the low tide periods with feeding purposes.

  17. Ichnological evidence of Megalosaurid Dinosaurs Crossing Middle Jurassic Tidal Flats

    PubMed Central

    Razzolini, Novella L.; Oms, Oriol; Castanera, Diego; Vila, Bernat; Santos, Vanda Faria dos; Galobart, Àngel

    2016-01-01

    A new dinosaur tracksite in the Vale de Meios quarry (Serra de Aire Formation, Bathonian, Portugal)preserves more than 700 theropod tracks. They are organized in at least 80 unidirectional trackways arranged in a bimodal orientation pattern (W/NW and E/SE). Quantitative and qualitative comparisons reveal that the large tridactyl, elongated and asymmetric tracks resemble the typical Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous Megalosauripus ichnogenus in all morphometric parameters. Few of the numerous tracks are preserved as elite tracks while the rest are preserved as different gradients of modified true tracks according to water content, erosive factors, radial fractures and internal overtrack formations. Taphonomical determinations are consistent with paleoenvironmental observations that indicate an inter-tidal flat located at the margin of a coastal barrier. The Megalosauripus tracks represent the oldest occurrence of this ichnotaxon and are attributed to large megalosaurid dinosaurs. Their occurrence in Vale de Meios tidal flat represents the unique paleoethological evidence of megalosaurids moving towards the lagoon, most likley during the low tide periods with feeding purposes. PMID:27538759

  18. Neuroanatomy of the marine Jurassic turtle Plesiochelys etalloni (Testudinata, Plesiochelyidae).

    PubMed

    Carabajal, Ariana Paulina; Sterli, Juliana; Müller, Johannes; Hilger, André

    2013-01-01

    Turtles are one of the least explored clades regarding endocranial anatomy with few available descriptions of the brain and inner ear of extant representatives. In addition, the paleoneurology of extinct turtles is poorly known and based on only a few natural cranial endocasts. The main goal of this study is to provide for the first time a detailed description of the neuroanatomy of an extinct turtle, the Late Jurassic Plesiochelysetalloni, including internal carotid circulation, cranial endocast and inner ear, based on the first digital 3D reconstruction using micro CT scans. The general shape of the cranial endocast of P. etalloni is tubular, with poorly marked cephalic and pontine flexures. Anteriorly, the olfactory bulbs are clearly differentiated suggesting larger bulbs than in any other described extinct or extant turtle, and indicating a higher capacity of olfaction in this taxon. The morphology of the inner ear of P. etalloni is comparable to that of extant turtles and resembles those of slow-moving terrestrial vertebrates, with markedly low, short and robust semicircular canals, and a reduced lagena. In P. etalloni the arterial pattern is similar to that found in extant cryptodires, where all the internal carotid branches are protected by bone. As the knowledge of paleoneurology in turtles is scarce and the application of modern techniques such as 3D reconstructions based on CT scans is almost unexplored in this clade, we hope this paper will trigger similar investigations of this type in other turtle taxa.

  19. Mesozoic units in SE Rhodope (Bulgaria): new structural and petrologic data and geodynamic implications for the Early Jurassic to Mid-Cretaceous evolution of the Vardar ocean basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonev, N.; Stampfli, G.

    2003-04-01

    In the southeastern Rhodope, both in southern Bulgaria and northern Greece, Mesozoic low-grade to non-metamorphic units, together with similar units in the eastern Vardar zone, were designated as the Circum-Rhodope Belt (CRB) that fringes the Rhodope high-grade metamorphic complex. In the Bulgarian southeastern Rhodope, Mesozoic units show a complicated tectono-stratigraphy underlaid by amphibolite-facies basement units. The basement sequence includes a lower orthogneiss unit with eclogite and meta-ophiolite lenses overlain by an upper marble-schist unit, presumably along a SSW-directed detachment fault as indicated by shear sense indicators. The Mesozoic sequence starts with greenschist units at the base, overlaying the basement along the tectonic contact. Mineral assemblages such as actinolite-chlorite-white mica ± garnet in schists and phyllites indicate medium greenschist facies metamorphism. Kinematic indicators in the same unit demonstrate a top-to-the NNW and NNE shear deformation coeval with metamorphism, subparallel to NW-SE to NE-SW trending mineral elongation lineation and axis of NW vergent small-scale folds. The greenschist unit is overlain by tectonic or depositional contact of melange-like unit that consists of diabases with Lower Jurassic radiolarian chert interlayers, Upper Permian siliciclastics and Middle-Upper Triassic limestones found as blocks in olistostromic member, embedded in Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous turbiditic matrix. The uppermost sedimentary-volcanogenic unit is represented by andesito-basalt lavas and gabbro-diorites, interbedded with terrigeneous-marl and tufaceous sediments that yield Upper Cretaceous (Campanian) fossils, related to the Late Cretaceous back-arc magmatic activity to the north in Sredna Gora zone. Petrologic and geochemical data indicates sub-alkaline and tholeiitic character of the greenschists and ophiolitic basaltic lavas, and the latter are classified as low-K and very low-Ti basalts with some boninitic affinity

  20. Relationship of voluminous ignimbrites to continental arc plutons: Petrology of Jurassic ignimbrites and contemporaneous plutons in southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fohey-Breting, N. K.; Barth, A.P.; Wooden, J.L.; Mazdab, F.K.; Carter, C.A.; Schermer, E.R.

    2010-01-01

    Volcanism was broadly associated in both space and time with Mesozoic plutonism in the Cordillera continental margin arc, but the precise petrogenetic relationships between volcanic rocks and adjacent zoned plutons are not known. Igneous rocks in a tilted crustal section in California include four laterally extensive Jurassic ash flow tuffs from 550 to >1100 m thick underlain at deeper structural levels by Jurassic plutons. Zircon geochronology confirms previous correlations of individual tuffs, suggesting ignimbrites with eruptive volumes up to 800 km3 were deposited both during the apparent Early Jurassic plutonic lull as well as contemporaneous with solidification of regionally widespread Middle and Late Jurassic plutons. The tuffs are weakly to strongly porphyritic (5 to 55% phenocrysts) monotonous intermediate porphyritic dacite to low-silica rhyolite and show strong bulk rock chemical affinity to contemporaneous plutons. Trace element compositions of zircons from the tuffs and contemporaneous plutonic rocks record large and consistent differences in Hf/Zr and REE over similar ranges in Ti abundances, supporting bulk compositional similarities and illuminating similarities and variations in thermal histories despite the effects of hydrothermal alteration. ?? 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. The largest fossil rodent

    PubMed Central

    Rinderknecht, Andrés; Blanco, R. Ernesto

    2008-01-01

    The discovery of an exceptionally well-preserved skull permits the description of the new South American fossil species of the rodent, Josephoartigasia monesi sp. nov. (family: Dinomyidae; Rodentia: Hystricognathi: Caviomorpha). This species with estimated body mass of nearly 1000 kg is the largest yet recorded. The skull sheds new light on the anatomy of the extinct giant rodents of the Dinomyidae, which are known mostly from isolated teeth and incomplete mandible remains. The fossil derives from San José Formation, Uruguay, usually assigned to the Pliocene–Pleistocene (4–2 Myr ago), and the proposed palaeoenvironment where this rodent lived was characterized as an estuarine or deltaic system with forest communities. PMID:18198140

  2. The largest fossil rodent.

    PubMed

    Rinderknecht, Andrés; Blanco, R Ernesto

    2008-04-22

    The discovery of an exceptionally well-preserved skull permits the description of the new South American fossil species of the rodent, Josephoartigasia monesi sp. nov. (family: Dinomyidae; Rodentia: Hystricognathi: Caviomorpha). This species with estimated body mass of nearly 1000kg is the largest yet recorded. The skull sheds new light on the anatomy of the extinct giant rodents of the Dinomyidae, which are known mostly from isolated teeth and incomplete mandible remains. The fossil derives from San José Formation, Uruguay, usually assigned to the Pliocene-Pleistocene (4-2Myr ago), and the proposed palaeoenvironment where this rodent lived was characterized as an estuarine or deltaic system with forest communities.

  3. Early penguin fossils, plus mitochondrial genomes, calibrate avian evolution.

    PubMed

    Slack, Kerryn E; Jones, Craig M; Ando, Tatsuro; Harrison, G L Abby; Fordyce, R Ewan; Arnason, Ulfur; Penny, David

    2006-06-01

    Testing models of macroevolution, and especially the sufficiency of microevolutionary processes, requires good collaboration between molecular biologists and paleontologists. We report such a test for events around the Late Cretaceous by describing the earliest penguin fossils, analyzing complete mitochondrial genomes from an albatross, a petrel, and a loon, and describe the gradual decline of pterosaurs at the same time modern birds radiate. The penguin fossils comprise four naturally associated skeletons from the New Zealand Waipara Greensand, a Paleocene (early Tertiary) formation just above a well-known Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary site. The fossils, in a new genus (Waimanu), provide a lower estimate of 61-62 Ma for the divergence between penguins and other birds and thus establish a reliable calibration point for avian evolution. Combining fossil calibration points, DNA sequences, maximum likelihood, and Bayesian analysis, the penguin calibrations imply a radiation of modern (crown group) birds in the Late Cretaceous. This includes a conservative estimate that modern sea and shorebird lineages diverged at least by the Late Cretaceous about 74 +/- 3 Ma (Campanian). It is clear that modern birds from at least the latest Cretaceous lived at the same time as archaic birds including Hesperornis, Ichthyornis, and the diverse Enantiornithiformes. Pterosaurs, which also coexisted with early crown birds, show notable changes through the Late Cretaceous. There was a decrease in taxonomic diversity, and small- to medium-sized species disappeared well before the end of the Cretaceous. A simple reading of the fossil record might suggest competitive interactions with birds, but much more needs to be understood about pterosaur life histories. Additional fossils and molecular data are still required to help understand the role of biotic interactions in the evolution of Late Cretaceous birds and thus to test that the mechanisms of microevolution are sufficient to explain

  4. Jurassic climate mode governed by ocean gateway

    PubMed Central

    Korte, Christoph; Hesselbo, Stephen P.; Ullmann, Clemens V.; Dietl, Gerd; Ruhl, Micha; Schweigert, Günter; Thibault, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    The Jurassic (∼201–145 Myr ago) was long considered a warm ‘greenhouse' period; more recently cool, even ‘icehouse' episodes have been postulated. However, the mechanisms governing transition between so-called Warm Modes and Cool Modes are poorly known. Here we present a new large high-quality oxygen-isotope dataset from an interval that includes previously suggested mode transitions. Our results show an especially abrupt earliest Middle Jurassic (∼174 Ma) mid-latitude cooling of seawater by as much as 10 °C in the north–south Laurasian Seaway, a marine passage that connected the equatorial Tethys Ocean to the Boreal Sea. Coincidence in timing with large-scale regional lithospheric updoming of the North Sea region is striking, and we hypothesize that northward oceanic heat transport was impeded by uplift, triggering Cool Mode conditions more widely. This extreme climate-mode transition provides a counter-example to other Mesozoic transitions linked to quantitative change in atmospheric greenhouse gas content. PMID:26658694

  5. Jurassic climate mode governed by ocean gateway.

    PubMed

    Korte, Christoph; Hesselbo, Stephen P; Ullmann, Clemens V; Dietl, Gerd; Ruhl, Micha; Schweigert, Günter; Thibault, Nicolas

    2015-12-11

    The Jurassic (∼201-145 Myr ago) was long considered a warm 'greenhouse' period; more recently cool, even 'icehouse' episodes have been postulated. However, the mechanisms governing transition between so-called Warm Modes and Cool Modes are poorly known. Here we present a new large high-quality oxygen-isotope dataset from an interval that includes previously suggested mode transitions. Our results show an especially abrupt earliest Middle Jurassic (∼174 Ma) mid-latitude cooling of seawater by as much as 10 °C in the north-south Laurasian Seaway, a marine passage that connected the equatorial Tethys Ocean to the Boreal Sea. Coincidence in timing with large-scale regional lithospheric updoming of the North Sea region is striking, and we hypothesize that northward oceanic heat transport was impeded by uplift, triggering Cool Mode conditions more widely. This extreme climate-mode transition provides a counter-example to other Mesozoic transitions linked to quantitative change in atmospheric greenhouse gas content.

  6. Jurassic climate mode governed by ocean gateway

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Korte, Christoph; Hesselbo, Stephen P.; Ullmann, Clemens V.; Dietl, Gerd; Ruhl, Micha; Schweigert, Günter; Thibault, Nicolas

    2015-12-01

    The Jurassic (~201-145 Myr ago) was long considered a warm `greenhouse' period; more recently cool, even `icehouse' episodes have been postulated. However, the mechanisms governing transition between so-called Warm Modes and Cool Modes are poorly known. Here we present a new large high-quality oxygen-isotope dataset from an interval that includes previously suggested mode transitions. Our results show an especially abrupt earliest Middle Jurassic (~174 Ma) mid-latitude cooling of seawater by as much as 10 °C in the north-south Laurasian Seaway, a marine passage that connected the equatorial Tethys Ocean to the Boreal Sea. Coincidence in timing with large-scale regional lithospheric updoming of the North Sea region is striking, and we hypothesize that northward oceanic heat transport was impeded by uplift, triggering Cool Mode conditions more widely. This extreme climate-mode transition provides a counter-example to other Mesozoic transitions linked to quantitative change in atmospheric greenhouse gas content.

  7. Bird-like anatomy, posture, and behavior revealed by an early jurassic theropod dinosaur resting trace

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Milner, A.R.C.; Harris, J.D.; Lockley, M.G.; Kirkland, J.I.; Matthews, N.A.

    2009-01-01

    Background: Fossil tracks made by non-avian theropod dinosaurs commonly reflect the habitual bipedal stance retained in living birds. Only rarely-captured behaviors, such as crouching, might create impressions made by the hands. Such tracks provide valuable information concerning the often poorly understood functional morphology of the early theropod forelimb. Methodology/Principal Findings: Here we describe a well-preserved theropod trackway in a Lower Jurassic (???198 millionyear- old) lacustrine beach sandstone in the Whitmore Point Member of the Moenave Formation in southwestern Utah. The trackway consists of prints of typical morphology, intermittent tail drags and, unusually, traces made by the animal resting on the substrate in a posture very similar to modern birds. The resting trace includes symmetrical pes impressions and well-defined impressions made by both hands, the tail, and the ischial callosity. Conclusions/Significance: The manus impressions corroborate that early theropods, like later birds, held their palms facing medially, in contrast to manus prints previously attributed to theropods that have forward-pointing digits. Both the symmetrical resting posture and the medially-facing palms therefore evolved by the Early Jurassic, much earlier in the theropod lineage than previously recognized, and may characterize all theropods.

  8. Bird-Like Anatomy, Posture, and Behavior Revealed by an Early Jurassic Theropod Dinosaur Resting Trace

    PubMed Central

    Milner, Andrew R. C.; Harris, Jerald D.; Lockley, Martin G.; Kirkland, James I.; Matthews, Neffra A.

    2009-01-01

    Background Fossil tracks made by non-avian theropod dinosaurs commonly reflect the habitual bipedal stance retained in living birds. Only rarely-captured behaviors, such as crouching, might create impressions made by the hands. Such tracks provide valuable information concerning the often poorly understood functional morphology of the early theropod forelimb. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we describe a well-preserved theropod trackway in a Lower Jurassic (∼198 million-year-old) lacustrine beach sandstone in the Whitmore Point Member of the Moenave Formation in southwestern Utah. The trackway consists of prints of typical morphology, intermittent tail drags and, unusually, traces made by the animal resting on the substrate in a posture very similar to modern birds. The resting trace includes symmetrical pes impressions and well-defined impressions made by both hands, the tail, and the ischial callosity. Conclusions/Significance The manus impressions corroborate that early theropods, like later birds, held their palms facing medially, in contrast to manus prints previously attributed to theropods that have forward-pointing digits. Both the symmetrical resting posture and the medially-facing palms therefore evolved by the Early Jurassic, much earlier in the theropod lineage than previously recognized, and may characterize all theropods. PMID:19259260

  9. Jurassic-Early Cretaceous Gondwanan homoxylous woods: a nomenclatural revision of the genera with taxonomic notes.

    PubMed

    Bamford, M K.; Philippe, M

    2001-04-01

    The homoxylous fossil woods occurring in the Gondwanan continents of South America, Australia, Africa, India and Antarctica during the Jurassic and Early Cretaceous period are considered here. Original descriptions of the genera and wherever possible, the type material, have been consulted. Applying the rules of the International Code of Botanical Nomenclature, the generic names of the homoxylous woods have been revised from a nomenclatural point of view. According to this review, out of 31 generic names used for woods from the given time interval and area, 6 are illegitimate later nomenclatural synonyms, 1 is a later homonym, and 5 can be considered as taxonomical synonyms. Moreover, 9 genera have been used erroneously. We propose one new generic name (Protaxodioxylon n. gen.) and elsewhere we will propose for conservation, with a conserved type one of the illegitimate names and one of the taxonomic synonyms. As a result, we consider that there are only eighteen generic names correctly quoted for the Jurassic-Early Cretaceous of Gondwana, and we provide a taxonomic key for the corresponding genera. This revision is the first step in systematically comparing northern and southern hemisphere woods.

  10. A giant spider from the Jurassic of China reveals greater diversity of the orbicularian stem group

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Selden, Paul A.; Shih, ChungKun; Ren, Dong

    2013-12-01

    A large female spider, Nephila jurassica, was described from Middle Jurassic strata of north-east China and placed in the modern genus Nephila (family Nephilidae) on the basis of many morphological similarities, but, as with many ancient fossils, the single specimen lacked synapomorphies of the family (Selden et al. 2011). In order to test the placement within the nephilid phylogenetic tree, Kuntner et al. (2013) calibrated the molecular phylogeny using N. jurassica in three different scenarios based on inferred mitochondrial substitution rates. They concluded that N. jurassica fitted better as a stem orbicularian than a nephilid. Now, a giant male spider has been discovered at the same locality that yielded N. jurassica. The two sexes are considered conspecific based on their similar morphological features, size, and provenance. The male cannot be accommodated in Nephilidae because of its pedipalp morphology, so the new genus Mongolarachne and family Mongolarachnidae are erected for the species. Comparison with possibly related families show that Mongolarachnidae is most likely on the orbicularian stem, close to other cribellate orbicularians (e.g., Deinopoidea), which suggests a greater diversity of cribellate orbicularians during the Middle Jurassic.

  11. Didactyl Tracks of Paravian Theropods (Maniraptora) from the ?Middle Jurassic of Africa

    PubMed Central

    Mudroch, Alexander; Richter, Ute; Joger, Ulrich; Kosma, Ralf; Idé, Oumarou; Maga, Abdoulaye

    2011-01-01

    Background A new dinosaur tracksite from ?Middle Jurassic sediments of the Irhazer Group on the plains of Agadez (Rep. Niger, northwest Africa) revealed extraordinarily well preserved didactyl tracks of a digitigrade bipedal trackmaker. The distinct morphology of the pes imprints indicates a theropod trackmaker from a paravian maniraptoran closely related to birds. Methodology/Principal Findings The early age and the morphological traits of the tracks allow for description of the new ichnotaxon Paravipus didactyloides. A total of 120 tracks are assigned to 5 individual trackways. The ‘medium-sized’ tracks with an average footprint length of 27.5 cm and footprint width of 23.1 cm are deeply imprinted into the track bearing sandstone. Conclusions/Significance A comparison with other didactyl tracks gives new insights into the foot morphology of advanced maniraptoran theropods and contributes to knowledge of their evolutionary history. The new ichnotaxon takes an important position in the ichnological fossil record of Gondwana and the mid-Jurassic biota worldwide, because it is among the earliest known records of paravian maniraptorans and of didactyl theropod tracks from Africa. PMID:21339816

  12. Preservational bias controls the fossil record of pterosaurs.

    PubMed

    Dean, Christopher D; Mannion, Philip D; Butler, Richard J

    2016-01-14

    Pterosaurs, a Mesozoic group of flying archosaurs, have become a focal point for debates pertaining to the impact of sampling biases on our reading of the fossil record, as well as the utility of sampling proxies in palaeodiversity reconstructions. The completeness of the pterosaur fossil specimens themselves potentially provides additional information that is not captured in existing sampling proxies, and might shed new light on the group's evolutionary history. Here we assess the quality of the pterosaur fossil record via a character completeness metric based on the number of phylogenetic characters that can be scored for all known skeletons of 172 valid species, with averaged completeness values calculated for each geological stage. The fossil record of pterosaurs is observed to be strongly influenced by the occurrence and distribution of Lagerstätten. Peaks in completeness correlate with Lagerstätten deposits, and a recovered correlation between completeness and observed diversity is rendered non-significant when Lagerstätten species are excluded. Intervals previously regarded as potential extinction events are shown to lack Lagerstätten and exhibit low completeness values: as such, the apparent low diversity in these intervals might be at least partly the result of poor fossil record quality. A positive correlation between temporal patterns in completeness of Cretaceous pterosaurs and birds further demonstrates the prominent role that Lagerstätten deposits have on the preservation of smaller bodied organisms, contrasting with a lack of correlation with the completeness of large-bodied sauropodomorphs. However, we unexpectedly find a strong correlation between sauropodomorph and pterosaur completeness within the Triassic-Jurassic, but not the Cretaceous, potentially relating to a shared shift in environmental preference and thus preservation style through time. This study highlights the importance of understanding the relationship between various

  13. Preservational bias controls the fossil record of pterosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Dean, Christopher D.; Mannion, Philip D.; Butler, Richard J.

    2016-01-01

    Pterosaurs, a Mesozoic group of flying archosaurs, have become a focal point for debates pertaining to the impact of sampling biases on our reading of the fossil record, as well as the utility of sampling proxies in palaeodiversity reconstructions. The completeness of the pterosaur fossil specimens themselves potentially provides additional information that is not captured in existing sampling proxies, and might shed new light on the group’s evolutionary history. Here we assess the quality of the pterosaur fossil record via a character completeness metric based on the number of phylogenetic characters that can be scored for all known skeletons of 172 valid species, with averaged completeness values calculated for each geological stage. The fossil record of pterosaurs is observed to be strongly influenced by the occurrence and distribution of Lagerstätten. Peaks in completeness correlate with Lagerstätten deposits, and a recovered correlation between completeness and observed diversity is rendered non-significant when Lagerstätten species are excluded. Intervals previously regarded as potential extinction events are shown to lack Lagerstätten and exhibit low completeness values: as such, the apparent low diversity in these intervals might be at least partly the result of poor fossil record quality. A positive correlation between temporal patterns in completeness of Cretaceous pterosaurs and birds further demonstrates the prominent role that Lagerstätten deposits have on the preservation of smaller bodied organisms, contrasting with a lack of correlation with the completeness of large-bodied sauropodomorphs. However, we unexpectedly find a strong correlation between sauropodomorph and pterosaur completeness within the Triassic–Jurassic, but not the Cretaceous, potentially relating to a shared shift in environmental preference and thus preservation style through time. This study highlights the importance of understanding the relationship between various

  14. Ichnofabric mapping and interpretation of Jurassic reservoir rocks of the Norwegian North Sea

    SciTech Connect

    Bockelie, J.F. )

    1991-06-01

    Recurrent sediment fabric and trace fossil associations in the Norwegian offshore Jurassic sequences have been interpreted by the ichnofabric concept. In the Sognefjord Formation (Oxfordian-Kimmeridgian) of the Troll Field five basic ichnofabrics were recognized and named after the dominant ichnogenus present, respectively: Helminthoida, Anconichnus, Palaeophycus, Ophiomorpha and Skolithos. These ichnofabrics developed in sediments deposited in marine environments ranging from quiescent offshore to high energy, shallow water nearshore situations. When sequence patterns of ichnofabrics were mapped within five chronostratigraphic reservoir zones of the Troll Field it was possible to recognize both how the frequency of a given ichnofabric may change in time in a restricted area or may change in its areal distribution in a restricted time interval. Such maps have been integrated with lithofacies maps and dip-meter studies in cored sequence to produce quantitative base maps for computerized reservoir models. The maps can also be used as a powerful tool for facies predictions.

  15. A revised checklist of Nepticulidae fossils (Lepidoptera) indicates an Early Cretaceous origin.

    PubMed

    Doorenweerd, Camiel; Nieukerken, Erik J Van; Sohn, Jae-Cheon; Labandeira, Conrad C

    2015-05-27

    With phylogenetic knowledge of Lepidoptera rapidly increasing, catalysed by increasingly powerful molecular techniques, the demand for fossil calibration points to estimate an evolutionary timeframe for the order is becoming an increasingly pressing issue. The family Nepticulidae is a species rich, basal branch within the phylogeny of the Lepidoptera, characterized by larval leaf-mining habits, and thereby represents a potentially important lineage whose evolutionary history can be established more thoroughly with the potential use of fossil calibration points. Using our experience with extant global Nepticulidae, we discuss a list of characters that may be used to assign fossil leaf mines to Nepticulidae, and suggest useful methods for classifying relevant fossil material. We present a checklist of 79 records of Nepticulidae representing adult and leaf-mine fossils mentioned in literature, often with multiple exemplars constituting a single record. We provide our interpretation of these fossils. Two species now are included in the collective generic name Stigmellites: Stigmellites resupinata (Krassilov, 2008) comb. nov. (from Ophiheliconoma) and Stigmellites almeidae (Martins-Neto, 1989) comb. nov. (from Nepticula). Eleven records are for the first time attributed to Nepticulidae. After discarding several dubious records, including one possibly placing the family at a latest Jurassic position, we conclude that the oldest fossils likely attributable to Nepticulidae are several exemplars representing a variety of species from the Dakota Formation (USA). The relevant strata containing these earliest fossils are now dated at 102 Ma (million years ago) in age, corresponding to the latest Albian Stage of the Early Cretaceous. Integration of all records in the checklist shows that a continuous presence of nepticulid-like leaf mines preserved as compression-impression fossils and by amber entombment of adults have a fossil record extending to the latest Early Cretaceous.

  16. Post-Jurassic tectonic evolution of Southeast Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zahirovic, Sabin; Seton, Maria; Dietmar Müller, R.; Flament, Nicolas

    2014-05-01

    The accretionary growth of Asia, linked to long-term convergence between Eurasia, Gondwana-derived blocks and the Pacific, resulted in a mosaic of terranes for which conflicting tectonic interpretations exist. Here, we propose solutions to a number of controversies related to the evolution of Sundaland through a synthesis of published geological data and plate reconstructions that reconcile both geological and geophysical constraints with plate driving forces. We propose that West Sulawesi, East Java and easternmost Borneo rifted from northern Gondwana in the latest Jurassic, collided with an intra-oceanic arc at ~115 Ma and subsequently sutured to Sundaland by 80 Ma. Although recent models argue that the Southwest Borneo core accreted to Sundaland at this time, we use volcanic and biogeographic constraints to show that the core of Borneo was on the Asian margin since at least the mid Jurassic. This northward transfer of Gondwana-derived continental fragments required a convergent plate boundary in the easternmost Tethys that we propose gave rise to the Philippine Archipelago based on the formation of latest Jurassic-Early Cretaceous supra-subduction zone ophiolites on Halmahera, Obi Island and Luzon. The Late Cretaceous marks the shift from Andean-style subduction to back-arc opening on the east Asian margin. Arc volcanism along South China ceased by ~60 Ma due to the rollback of the Izanagi slab, leading to the oceanward migration of the volcanic arc and the opening of the Proto South China Sea (PSCS). We use the Apennines-Tyrrhenian system in the Mediterranean as an analogue to model this back-arc. Continued rollback detaches South Palawan, Mindoro and the Semitau continental blocks from the stable east Asian margin and transfers them onto Sundaland in the Eocene to produce the Sarawak Orogeny. The extrusion of Indochina and subduction polarity reversal along northern Borneo opens the South China Sea and transfers the Dangerous Grounds-Reed Bank southward to

  17. Increased Atmospheric SO2 Detected from Changes in Leaf Physiognomy across the Triassic–Jurassic Boundary Interval of East Greenland

    PubMed Central

    Bacon, Karen L.; Belcher, Claire M.; Haworth, Matthew; McElwain, Jennifer C.

    2013-01-01

    The Triassic–Jurassic boundary (Tr–J; ∼201 Ma) is marked by a doubling in the concentration of atmospheric CO2, rising temperatures, and ecosystem instability. This appears to have been driven by a major perturbation in the global carbon cycle due to massive volcanism in the Central Atlantic Magmatic Province. It is hypothesized that this volcanism also likely delivered sulphur dioxide (SO2) to the atmosphere. The role that SO2 may have played in leading to ecosystem instability at the time has not received much attention. To date, little direct evidence has been presented from the fossil record capable of implicating SO2 as a cause of plant extinctions at this time. In order to address this, we performed a physiognomic leaf analysis on well-preserved fossil leaves, including Ginkgoales, bennettites, and conifers from nine plant beds that span the Tr–J boundary at Astartekløft, East Greenland. The physiognomic responses of fossil taxa were compared to the leaf size and shape variations observed in nearest living equivalent taxa exposed to simulated palaeoatmospheric treatments in controlled environment chambers. The modern taxa showed a statistically significant increase in leaf roundness when fumigated with SO2. A similar increase in leaf roundness was also observed in the Tr–J fossil taxa immediately prior to a sudden decrease in their relative abundances at Astartekløft. This research reveals that increases in atmospheric SO2 can likely be traced in the fossil record by analyzing physiognomic changes in fossil leaves. A pattern of relative abundance decline following increased leaf roundness for all six fossil taxa investigated supports the hypothesis that SO2 had a significant role in Tr–J plant extinctions. This finding highlights that the role of SO2 in plant biodiversity declines across other major geological boundaries coinciding with global scale volcanism should be further explored using leaf physiognomy. PMID:23593262

  18. Giving the early fossil record of sponges a squeeze.

    PubMed

    Antcliffe, Jonathan B; Callow, Richard H T; Brasier, Martin D

    2014-11-01

    Twenty candidate fossils wi