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Ultimate Eocene (Priabonian) chondrichthyans (Holocephali, Elasmobranchii) of Antarctica
Swedish Museum of Natural History, Department of Paleobiology.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2268-5824
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2016 (English)In: Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, ISSN 0272-4634, E-ISSN 1937-2809Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

ABSTRACT—The Eocene La Meseta Formation on Seymour Island, Antarctic Peninsula, is known for its remarkable wealth of fossil remains of chondrichthyans and teleosts. Chondrichthyans seemingly were dominant elements in the Antarctic Paleogene fish fauna, but decreased in abundance from middle to late Eocene, during which time remains of bony fishes increase. This decline of chondrichthyans at the end of the Eocene generally is related to sudden cooling of seawater, reduction in shelf area, and increasing shelf depth due to the onset of the Antarctic thermal isolation. The last chondrichthyan records known so far include a chimeroid tooth plate from TELM 6 (Lutetian) and a single pristiophorid rostral spine from TELM 7 (Priabonian). Here, we present new chondrichthyan records of Squalus, Squatina, Pristiophorus, Striatolamia, Palaeohypotodus, Carcharocles, and Ischyodus from the upper parts of TELM 7 (Priabonian), including the first record of Carcharocles sokolovi from Antarctica. This assemblage suggests that chondrichthyans persisted much longer in Antarctic waters despite rather cool sea surface temperatures of approximately 5C. The final disappearance of chondrichthyans at the Eocene–Oligocene boundary concurs with abrupt ice sheet formation in Antarctica. Diversity patterns of chondrichthyans throughout the La Meseta Formation appear to be related to climatic conditions rather than plate tectonics.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016.
National Category
Other Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
Research subject
The changing Earth; Ecosystems and species history
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:nrm:diva-1757DOI: 10.1080/02724634.2016.1160911OAI: oai:DiVA.org:nrm-1757DiVA: diva2:919519
Funder
Swedish Research Council
Available from: 2016-04-14 Created: 2016-04-14 Last updated: 2017-11-30Bibliographically approved

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