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Skeletal remains of Phoebodus politus Newberry 1889 (Chondrichthyes: Elasmobranchii) from a Famennian Konservatlagerstätte in the eastern Anti-Atlas (Morocco) and its ecology


Frey, Linda; Coates, Michael; Ginter, Michal; Klug, Christian (2017). Skeletal remains of Phoebodus politus Newberry 1889 (Chondrichthyes: Elasmobranchii) from a Famennian Konservatlagerstätte in the eastern Anti-Atlas (Morocco) and its ecology. In: 14th International Symposium on Early and Lower Vertebrates, Chęciny, Poland, 3 July 2017 - 7 July 2017, 36.

Abstract

The Devonian chondrichthyan Phoebodus (Newberry 1889) has long been known from isolated teeth recovered from a wide variety of fossil localities, ranging from the Middle Devonian to the Upper Missippian (Ginter et al. 2010). Here we provide a preliminary report of the first discovery of substantial, partly articulated skeletal and dental remains of a phoebodont, Phoebodus politus, from Famennian outrops of the eastern Anti-Atlas of Morocco. Initial comparisons support the hypothesized close relationship of pheobodonts with the Upper Mississippian chondrichthyan Thrinacodus gracia (Grogan & Lund 2008, Ginter et al. 2010). Both taxa exhibit an anguiliform body and elongate slender cranium. However, P. politus also exhibits dorsal fins with ctenacanth-like fin spines, echoing informal records of similar fin spine and tooth associations from the Famennian of Alaska (Maisey, in Ginter et al. 2010). This Moroccan material represents an important addition to the limited data set of Devonian chondrichthyans. As such, these data will provide a valuable test of recent phylogenetic hypotheses (Pradel et al. 2011; Coates et al. 2017) and addition to analyses of early gathostome diversity and disparity before and after the end Devonian Hangenberg Event (Friedman & Sallan 2012). Among living elasmobranchs, Chlamydoselachus uniquely displays a body shape, snout form and tooth morphology resembling those of P. politus. Acknowledging that the structure and likely biomechanics of the axial skeletons and jaws of these widey separated genera differ considerably, we nevertheless suggest that Chlamydoselachus (Ebert & Compagno 2009) provides the best available living model for understanding the ecomorphology of this remarkable, late Devonian comparator.

Abstract

The Devonian chondrichthyan Phoebodus (Newberry 1889) has long been known from isolated teeth recovered from a wide variety of fossil localities, ranging from the Middle Devonian to the Upper Missippian (Ginter et al. 2010). Here we provide a preliminary report of the first discovery of substantial, partly articulated skeletal and dental remains of a phoebodont, Phoebodus politus, from Famennian outrops of the eastern Anti-Atlas of Morocco. Initial comparisons support the hypothesized close relationship of pheobodonts with the Upper Mississippian chondrichthyan Thrinacodus gracia (Grogan & Lund 2008, Ginter et al. 2010). Both taxa exhibit an anguiliform body and elongate slender cranium. However, P. politus also exhibits dorsal fins with ctenacanth-like fin spines, echoing informal records of similar fin spine and tooth associations from the Famennian of Alaska (Maisey, in Ginter et al. 2010). This Moroccan material represents an important addition to the limited data set of Devonian chondrichthyans. As such, these data will provide a valuable test of recent phylogenetic hypotheses (Pradel et al. 2011; Coates et al. 2017) and addition to analyses of early gathostome diversity and disparity before and after the end Devonian Hangenberg Event (Friedman & Sallan 2012). Among living elasmobranchs, Chlamydoselachus uniquely displays a body shape, snout form and tooth morphology resembling those of P. politus. Acknowledging that the structure and likely biomechanics of the axial skeletons and jaws of these widey separated genera differ considerably, we nevertheless suggest that Chlamydoselachus (Ebert & Compagno 2009) provides the best available living model for understanding the ecomorphology of this remarkable, late Devonian comparator.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper), not refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Paleontological Institute and Museum
Dewey Decimal Classification:560 Fossils & prehistoric life
Language:English
Event End Date:7 July 2017
Deposited On:14 Jul 2017 06:20
Last Modified:14 Jul 2017 18:30
Publisher:University of Warsaw
Series Name:Ichthyolith Issues
ISSN:1302-1314

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