Rahul Sharma

2017 in paleontology

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2017 in paleontology

Paleontology or palaeontology (from Greek: paleo, "ancient"; ontos, "being"; and logos, "knowledge") is the study of prehistoric life forms on Earth through the examination of plant and animal fossils. This includes the study of body fossils, tracks (ichnites), burrows, cast-off parts, fossilised feces (coprolites), palynomorphs and chemical residues. Because humans have encountered fossils for millennia, paleontology has a long history both before and after becoming formalized as a science. This article records significant discoveries and events related to paleontology that occurred or were published in the year 2017.

Contents

Research

  • A description of the anatomy of the braincase and middle ear regions of an exceptionally well-preserved skull of Stanocephalosaurus amenasensis from the Triassic of Algeria is published by Arbez, Dahoumane & Steyer (2017).
  • Research

  • A study on the bone histology and growth of the Jurassic pleurosaurid Palaeopleurosaurus is published by Klein & Scheyer (2017).
  • Research

  • A study on the anatomy and phylogenetic relationships of Eichstaettisaurus schroederi and Ardeosaurus digitatellus will be published by Simões et al. (2017).
  • A redescription of Mosasaurus hoffmannii based on examination of many specimens will be published by Street & Caldwell (2017), who also provide emended diagnoses for both the genus Mosasaurus and its type species M. hoffmannii.
  • Research

  • A study on the morphology of the occlusal surface of placodont teeth and its implications for the diet of the placodonts is published by Crofts et al. (2017).
  • A redescription of the holotype specimen of Tuarangisaurus keyesi and a study on the phylogenetic relationships of the species will be published by O'Gorman et al. (2017).
  • A study on the anatomy of the vertebra of Vegasaurus molyi and its implications for the anatomy of the nervous system of the species is published by O'Gorman & Fernandez (2017).
  • A study on the skeletal morphology and histology of a perinatal aristonectine plesiosaur specimen recovered from the Lopez de Bertodano Formation (Seymour Island, Antarctica) is published by O’Gorman, Talevi & Fernández (2017).
  • A reappraisal and a study on the phylogenetic relationships of Mauisaurus is published by Hiller et al. (2017).
  • Libonectes atlasense is redescribed by Sachs & Kear (2017), who consider this species to be likely synonymous with Libonectes morgani.
  • Research

  • meiolaniid fossils will be described from the Eocene Rundle Formation (eastern Queensland, Australia) by Poropat et al. (2017), representing the oldest meiolaniid remains found in Australasia to date.
  • New fossil material of Jiangxichelys ganzhouensis will be described by Tong et al. (2017), who also transfer the species "Zangerlia" neimongolensis to the genus Jiangxichelys.
  • A redescription of Ctenochelys acris based on several specimens from the Late Cretaceous (early Campanian) Mooreville Chalk of Alabama (United States) will be published by Gentry (2017).
  • Fossils of a member of the tortoise genus Titanochelon are described from the early Pleistocene of Spain by Pérez-García, Vlachos & Arribas (2017), representing the youngest evidence of a large tortoise in continental Europe.
  • A study on the anatomy of the neck vertebrae of the Late Jurassic stem-pleurodire Platychelys oberndorferi and its implications for the mechanism allowing neck and head retraction in this species is published by Anquetin, Tong & Claude (2017).
  • A description of a large shell fragment from the Late Cretaceous Marília Formation (Brazil), interpreted as belonging to the largest podocnemidoid turtle reported from the Bauru Basin so far, will be published by Hermanson, Ferreira & Langer (2017).
  • Research

  • A study on the evolutionary history and ecological correlates of bone ornamentation in extant and extinct pseudosuchians is published by Clarac et al. (2017).
  • A description of a braincase assigned to Macelognathus vagans recovered from the Fruita Paleontological Area (Colorado, United States) and a study on the phylogenetic relationships of the species is published by Leardi, Pol & Clark (2017).
  • A study on the changes in morphological diversity of the skulls of extinct and extant crocodyliforms through time is published by Wilberg (2017).
  • A description of the anatomy of the postcranial skeleton of Campinasuchus dinizi based on five specimens is published by Cotts et al. (2017).
  • A study on the mode of reproduction of metriorhynchids is published by Herrera et al. (2017).
  • A study of the bone histology of a humerus of an eusuchian crocodyliform (possibly a member of the genus Acynodon) from the Late Cretaceous (Campanian) Laño quarry (northern Spain) and its implications for the skeletal growth pattern of the animal will be published by Company & Pereda-Suberbiola (2017).
  • A study on the anatomy of the braincase of Gryposuchus neogaeus is published by Bona, Carabajal & Gasparini (2017).
  • Research

  • A study on the anatomical diversity of the jugal bone in dinosaurs and its evolution is published by Sullivan & Xu (2017).
  • A re-evaluation of the purported Triassic dinosaur fossils from Poland discovered prior to the description of Silesaurus opolensis is published by Skawiński et al. (2017), who interpret Velocipes guerichi as a theropod dinosaur.
  • A description and a study on the phylogenetic affinities of the theropod fossils recovered from the Early Cretaceous (Berriasian–Valanginian) Bajada Colorada Formation (Argentina) will be published by Canale et al. (2017).
  • A study on the ontogenetic changes in the skeleton of Limusaurus inextricabilis as indicated by the anatomy of the skeletons of 19 specimens representing six ontogenetic stages is published by Wang et al. (2017).
  • A partial spinosaurid tooth is described from the Early Cretaceous (Berriasian–Valanginian) Feliz Deserto Formation (Brazil) by Sales et al. (2017), representing the oldest known occurrence of a spinosaurid from South America so far.
  • An osteological description of the skull of the holotype specimen of Buitreraptor gonzalezorum is published by Gianechini, Makovicky & Apesteguía (2017).
  • Protein remains preserved in skeletal elements of an Early Jurassic sauropodomorph dinosaur Lufengosaurus are described by Lee et al. (2017).
  • A study on the anatomy of the teeth of a specimen of Camarasaurus recovered from the Howe-Stephens Quarry (Bighorn Basin, Wyoming, United States) will be published by Wiersma & Sander (2017).
  • New information on the anatomy of the lectotype specimen of Lusotitan atalaiensis and a study on the phylogenetic relationships of the species will be published by Mocho, Royo-Torres & Ortega (2017).
  • A study on the histology of the bony structures found with the holotype specimen of Agustinia ligabuei is published by Bellardini & Cerda (2017), who argue that these structures are not osteoderms and that there is no evidence of the presence of dermal armor in Agustinia.
  • Tail vertebrae of a titanosaur sauropod affected by osteomyelitis will be described from the Late Cretaceous (Campanian) Anacleto Formation (Argentina) by de García et al. (2017).
  • A study on the internal anatomy of the titanosaur osteoderms recovered from the Late Cretaceous site of Lo Hueco (Spain) and the function of titanosaur dermal armor is published by Vidal et al. (2017).
  • A description of new fossil material of Alamosaurus sanjuanensis (an articulated series of cervical vertebrae from Big Bend National Park, Texas) and a study of phylogenetic relationships of this species will be published by Tykoski & Fiorillo (2017).
  • A redescription of the postcranial material of Lesothosaurus diagnosticus is published by Baron, Norman & Barrett (2017), who argue that Stormbergia dangershoeki is most likely a junior synonym of L. diagnosticus.
  • A study on the anatomical features related to feeding and the mechanisms of food processing in ankylosaurian dinosaurs is published by Ősi et al. (2017).
  • A study on the length of the incubation period in Hypacrosaurus stebingeri and Protoceratops andrewsi is published by Erickson et al. (2017).
  • A naturally occurring brain endocast of an iguanodontian ornithopod (possibly Barilium or Hypselospinus), preserving mineralized brain soft tissues, will be described from the Early Cretaceous (Valanginian) Tunbridge Wells Sand Formation (United Kingdom) by Brasier et al. (2017).
  • A study on the individual variation in the morphology of the postcranial skeleton of Iguanodon bernissartensis is published by Verdú et al. (2017), who consider Delapparentia turolensis to be impossible to distinguish from Iguanodon species based on the available material.
  • Schroeter et al. (2017) reevaluate collagen I peptides recovered from a specimen of Brachylophosaurus canadensis in 2009 and recover additional eight peptide sequences of collagen I from the same specimen.
  • Research

  • A study on the method allowing estimation of wing loading and aspect ratio in Mesozoic birds and on flight modes that were possible for Mesozoic birds will be published by Serrano et al. (2017).
  • A study on the morphological characteristics and evolution of the pygostyle and tail feathers in Early Cretaceous birds and closely related non-avian theropods is published by Wang & O'Connor (2017).
  • A study estimating values of body weight, wing span and wing area of the trackmakers of the Cretaceous ichnotaxa Archaeornithipus meijidei, Hwangsanipes choughi and Yacoraitichnus avis is published by Tanaka (2017).
  • A tooth attributed to an archaeopterygid bird is described from the Early Cretaceous of France by Louchart & Pouech (2017).
  • A well-preserved skull of a juvenile specimen of Sapeornis chaoyangensis is described by Wang et al. (2017), preserving what the authors consider to be the complete dentition.
  • A complete description of the skeletal anatomy of the holotype of Chiappeavis magnapremaxillo, the first enantiornithine to preserve a rectricial fan, suggesting that possibly rectricial bulbs were present in basal members of this clade, is published by O'Connor et al. (2017).
  • A bohaiornithid enantiornithine specimen with exceptionally preserved feathers, providing information on the colouration of the bird, is described from the Early Cretaceous Jiufotang Formation (China) by Peteya et al. (2017).
  • A new specimen of the Early Cretaceous species Archaeorhynchus spathula will be described by Wang and Zhou (2017).
  • Delphine Angst et al. (in press) find Gargantuavis philoinos in Spain, in Laño.
  • A study on the species richness, taxonomic diversity and presumed ecological characteristics of the Eocene avifauna of the Messel fossil site will be published by Mayr (2017).
  • A review of the Neogene birds of continental Asia is provided by Zelenkov (2017).
  • A study on the isolated contour feather from the Eocene Fur Formation (Denmark), indicating presence of melanosomes similar in size and morphology to those of extant parrots, is published by Gren et al. (2017).
  • A study on the nuclear genome fragments recovered from extinct elephant birds and a reconstruction of the phylogenomic timetree for the group Palaeognathae is published by Yonezawa et al. (2017).
  • A revision of ratite museum fossil specimens from Argentina, indicating presence of non-rheid ratites in South America during Paleogene and Miocene, is published by Agnolin (2017).
  • New skeletal elements (limb bones) of Garganornis ballmanni are described from the Miocene of Italy by Pavia et al. (2017).
  • Partial tibiotarsus of a member of Cariamae belonging or related to the family Ameghinornithidae will be described from the Eocene strata in Inner Mongolia (China) correlative to the Irdin Manha Formation by Stidham & Wang (2017).
  • A study on the morphological adaptations linked to substrate preference and locomotory mode in the hindlimbs of phorusrhacids is published by Degrange (2017).
  • Leg bones of a penguin comparable in size to Anthropornis nordenskjoeldi are described from the mid-Paleocene Waipara Greensand (New Zealand) by Mayr, De Pietri & Scofield (2017).
  • Research

  • A study on the systematic relationships of Parapsicephalus purdoni is published by O’Sullivan & Martill (2017).
  • A description of a neck vertebra of a probable member of the genus Hatzegopteryx recovered from the Late Cretaceous (Maastrichtian) Sebeş Formation (Romania) and a study on the implications of the vertebra's anatomy for the neck length and ecology of Hatzegopteryx is published by Naish & Witton (2017).
  • Research

  • A study on the diet of the mesosaurs from the Early Permian Irati Formation (Brazil) and Mangrullo Formation (Uruguay) is published by Da Silva et al. (2017).
  • A study on the bone histology of Permian pareiasaurs from South Africa and its implications for the lifestyle and growth patterns of pareiasaurs is published by Canoville & Chinsamy (2017).
  • A restudy of Arctosaurus osborni is published by Sues (2017), who considers this species to be an archosauromorph reptile, possibly an allokotosaurian.
  • A specimen of Dinocephalosaurus containing an embryo, providing evidence of live birth in this taxon, is described from the Middle Triassic of China by Liu et al. (2017).
  • Research

  • Phreatophasma aenigmaticum is argued to be a member of Caseidae by Brocklehurst & Fröbisch (2017).
  • A study on the body size evolution of edaphosaurids and sphenacodontids is published by Brocklehurst & Brink (2017).
  • A skull of a juvenile specimen of Anteosaurus magnificus is described from the Permian Abrahamskraal Formation (South Africa) by Kruger, Rubidge & Abdala (2017).
  • A study on the resting metabolic rate in Moghreberia nmachouensis is published by Olivier et al. (2017).
  • A study on the anatomy of the teeth and maxilla of Euchambersia mirabilis and its implications for the hypothesis that venom gland were present in this species is published by Benoit et al. (2017).
  • A survey of the aggregations of the specimens of Galesaurus planiceps and Thrinaxodon liorhinus, with emphasis on whether the aggregations consist of individuals of similar age or representing a mixture of different age classes, is published by Jasinoski & Abdala (2017).
  • A study on the ontogenetic changes in the skull and mandible of Galesaurus planiceps is published by Jasinoski & Abdala (2017).
  • A descrition of the anatomy of the postcranial skeleton of Tritylodon longaevus is published by Gaetano, Abdala & Govender (2017).
  • Cast of a burrow which was probably made by a tritheledontid cynodont will be described from the Early Jurassic upper Elliot Formation (South Africa) by Bordy et al. (2017).
  • Research

  • Tracks of a small hopping mammal trackmaker are described from the Early Cretaceous Jinju Formation (South Korea) by Kim et al. (2017), who name a new ichnotaxon Koreasaltipes jinjuensis belonging to the morphofamily Ameghinichnidae.
  • Tracks of a raccoon-sized mammaliaform representing the morphofamily Ameghinichnidae are described from the Early Cretaceous (late Aptian) Calonda Formation (Angola) by Mateus et al. (2017), who name a new ichnotaxon Catocapes angolanus.
  • A description of the middle ear ossicles of Arboroharamiya is published by Meng et al. (2017).
  • New information on the skull anatomy of Peratherium cuvieri will be published by Selva & Ladevèze (2017).
  • A study on the causes of decline and extinction of sparassodonts is published by López-Aguirre et al. (2017).
  • A study on the age of a specimen of Zygomaturus trilobus recovered from the Willandra Lakes locality (Australia), indicating that this species persisted for a considerable time after the first arrival of Indigenous Australians, is published by Westaway, Olley & Grün (2017).
  • New taxa

    Metatherians
    Other non-eutherian mammals

    Research

  • A study of the phylogenetic relationships of the Paleocene placental mammals is published by Halliday, Upchurch and Goswami (2017).
  • A study on the phylogenetic placement of members of the genus Thalassocnus within Megatheria is published by Amson, de Muizon & Gaudin (2017).
  • A study on the dietary differences between members of the genera Sinomastodon, Stegodon and Elephas from the Pleistocene of South China will be published by Zhang et al. (2017).
  • A study on the habitat preferences of the desmostylians Desmostylus and Paleoparadoxia as indicated by their fossil occurrences is published by Matsui et al. (2017).
  • Description of cranial and postcranial remains of Pyrotherium from the Oligocene locality of Quebrada Fiera (Mendoza Province, Argentina) will be published by Cerdeño & Vera (2017).
  • A study on the speciation rates and the evolution of body size and tooth morphology in Neogene and Quaternary radiation of horses is published by Cantalapiedra et al. (2017).
  • Fossils of a member of the camelid genus Hemiauchenia are described from the late Pliocene of Argentina by Gasparini et al. (2017), representing the oldest record of the tribe Lamini in South America reported so far.
  • A study on the phylogenetic relationships of the Pleistocene species Bison schoetensacki as indicated by recovered ancient DNA is published by Palacio et al. (2017).
  • A study on the anatomy of the inner ear of Oligocene mammalodontid and aetiocetid cetaceans and their ability to detect low frequencies is published by Park et al. (2017).
  • A partial skull of a right whale (a member of a relative of the genus Eubalaena) is described from the Pliocene Tjörnes Formation (Iceland) by Field et al. (2017).
  • A study on the anatomy of the bony labyrinth of Hyaenodon exiguus and its implications for the paleobiology of the species is published by Pfaff et al. (2017).
  • A study on the morphological adaptations linked to grasping and digging ability, substrate preference and locomotory mode in the forelimb of Cyonasua is published by Tarquini et al. (2017).
  • A revision and a study on the phylogenetic relationships of the Miocene earless seals assigned to the genera Prophoca and Leptophoca is published by Dewaele, Lambert & Louwye (2017).
  • A skull of Hyaenictis aff. almerai, representing the most complete European specimen of the genus, will be described from the Miocene of Spain by Vinuesa et al. (2017).
  • A study on the phylogenetic relationships of "Felis" pamiri Ozansoy (1959) from the late Miocene of Turkey will be published by Geraads & Peigné (2017).
  • A study on the braincase anatomy of the American lion (Panthera atrox) is published by Cuff, Stockey & Goswami (2017).
  • Virtual cranial endocast of the Oligocene sciurid Cedromus wilsoni is reconstructed by Bertrand, Amador-Mughal & Silcox (2017).
  • New adult and juvenile specimens of the dinomyid rodent Isostylomys laurillardi are described from the Miocene Camacho Formation (Uruguay) by Rinderknecht, Bostelmann & Ubilla (2017).
  • New taxa

    Xenarthrans
    Afrotherians
    Even-toed ungulates
    Cetaceans
    Carnivorans
    Rodents
    Primates
    Other eutherians

    Research

  • A diverse Early Triassic (Olenekian) marine fauna, including leptomitid protomonaxonid sponges (a group otherwise known only from Cambrian and Ordovician), new forms of the crinoid order Holocrinida displaying advanced characters, a probable basal ophiodermatid and gladius-bearing coleoids (previously unknown in Early Triassic strata) is reported from Paris (Idaho, United States) by Brayard et al. (2017).
  • A study on the muscle anatomy of Pambdelurion whittingtoni is published by Young & Vinther (2017).
  • Cambrian species Zhenghecaris shankouensis, originally classified as a bivalved arthropod, is reinterpreted as a member of Radiodonta by Zeng et al. (2017).
  • A study on the anatomy of the Cambrian hyolith Haplophrentis, as well as on the phylogenetic relationships of the hyoliths, is published by Moysiuk, Smith & Caron (2017).
  • A study on the phylogenetic relationships of Tullimonstrum gregarium, challenging its interpretation as a vertebrate, is published by Sallan et al. (2017).
  • References

    2017 in paleontology Wikipedia


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