Taxonomy and palaeoecology of Cretaceous nautilids Angulithes galea (Fritsch in Fritsch & Schlönbach, 1872) and Angulithes westphalicus (Schlüter, 1872)


Authors: Frank J

Published in: Bulletin of Geosciences, volume 85, issue 3; pages: 487 - 496; Received 6 April 2010; Accepted in revised form 19 July 2010; Online 13 September 2010

Keywords: Angulithes, nautilids, Late Cretaceous, taxonomy, palaeoecology, ontogeny,

full text (PDF, 1.45 MB)

Export to RIS


Supplementary material

Appendix 1 (69 kB)

Appendix 2 (72 kB)



Angulithes galea (Fritsch in Fritsch & Schlönbach, 1872) and Angulithes westphalicus (Schlüter, 1872) are representatives of Angulithes Montfort, 1808, occurring in the Late Cretaceous of Europe, from the Late Turonian to the Late Campanian. Following examination of the majority of specimens representing these species and their specific morphology, a detailed revision was made. Both species undergo significant morphological changes during their ontogeny, changing the shape of the ventral side and whorl cross-section attended by onset and loss of ventral keel and changing of the shell surface (by A. galea). Comparing these changes with the ontogeny of recent Nautilus suggests they are expressions of the approach and attainment of maturity. Due to this comparison, comparable changes in other taxa can be similarly interpreted, e.g. representatives of the genus Deltocymatoceras. The changes undergone by A. galea are at maturity accompanied by additional features such as strong radial ribbing, which is comparable with the ribbing in Deltocymatoceras. The affinity (ventral keel, suture, ontogeny and stratigraphy) of this genus with Angulithes is a topic for discussion.


Chamberlain, Jr., J.A. & Westermann, G.E.G. 1976. Hydrodynamic properties of cephalopod shell ornament. Paleobiology 2, 316-331.

Collins, D. & Ward, P.D. 1987. Adolescent growth and maturity in Nautilus, 421-431. In Saunders, W.B. & Landman, N.H. (eds) Nautilus: the biology and paleobiology of a living fossil. Plenum Press, New York & London.

Dzik, J. 1984. Phylogeny of the Nautiloidea. Palaeontologia Polonica 45, 1-220.

Engeser, T. 1999. Phylogeny of the “Post-Triassic” nautiloids. Fifth International Symposium Cephalopods - Present and Past (Vienna), Abstracts, 36.

Foord, A.H. 1891. Catalogue of the fossil Cephalopoda in the British Museum (Natural History), part 2, containing the remainder of the suborder Nautiloidea, constisting of the families Lituitidae, Trochoceratidae, and Nautilidae with a supplement. 407 pp. British Museum (Natural History), London.

Fözy, I. 2001. Campanian (Late Cretaceous) cephalopods from Sümeg (Transdanubian Central Range, Hungary). Fragmenta Palaeontologica Hungarica 19, 25-37.

Frank, J. 2007a. Upper Cretaceous Nautiloids of Epicontinental Seas in Central Europe - Bohemian Cretaceous Basin. Seventh International Symposium Cephalopods - Present and Past, Sapporo (Japan), Abstracts, 112-113.

Frank, J. 2007b. Nautiloidea české křídové pánve. 8. paleontologická konferencia, zborník abstraktov, 35-36.

Frank, J. 2009. Deltocymatoceras galea (Fritsh, 1872) the remarkable Upper Cretaceous Nautilid (Cephalopoda). 10th Anniversary Conference of the Czech, Polish and Slovak Paleontologists, Abstracts, 13-14.

Frič, A. 1883. Studien im Gebiete der Böhmischen Kreideformation; Palaeontologische Untersuchungen der einzelnen Schichten; III. Die Iserschichten. Archiv der naturwissenschaftlich Landesdurchforschung von Böhmen, Geologische Abteilung 5(2), 1-144.

Frič, A. 1885. Studie v oboru křídového útvaru v Čechách. Paleontologické prozkoumání jednotlivých vrstev. III. Jizerské vrstvy. Archiv pro přírodovědecké prozkoumání Čech, Geologické oddělení 5(2), 1-132.

Fritsch, A. & Schlönbach, U. 1872. Cephalopoden der böhmischen Kreideformation. 52 pp. Prag.

Geinitz, H.B. 1872-1875. Das Elbthalgebirge in Sachsen. Teil II: Der mittlere und obere Quader. Palaeontographica 20(II), 1-245.

Hyatt, A. 1883-1884. Genera of Fossil Cephalopods. Proceedings of the Boston Society of Natural History 22, 253-338.

Košťák, M., Čech, S., Ekrt, B.,Mazuch, M.,Wiese, F., Voigt, S. & Wood, C.J. 2004. Belemnites of the Bohemian Cretaceous Basin in a global context. Acta Geologica Polonica 54(4), 511-533.

Kummel, B. 1956. Post-Triassic Nautiloid genera. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard College in Cambridge 114, 319-494.

Leymerie, A. 1842. Sur le terrain Crétacé du Department d’Aube. Mémoires de la Société Géologique de la France, Série 1(5), 1-56.

Matsumoto, T. 1983. Cretaceous nautiloids from Hokkaido - I. Transactions and Proceedings of the Palaeontological Society of Japan, New Series 129, 9-25.

Matsumoto, T. & Muramoto, K. 1983. Cretaceous Nautiloids from Hokkaido - II, part 2. Three Nautiloid species from the Santonian and Campanian of Hokkaido. Transactions and Proceedings of the Palaeontological Society of Japan, New Series 130, 85-95.

Montfort, D. 1808. Conchyliologie systematique et classification méthodique des coquilles; offrant leurs figures, leur arrangement générique, leurs descriptions caractéristiques, leur noms; ainsi que leur synonymie en plusieurs langues. Conchyliologie systematique, Tome premiere. 409 pp. F. Schoell, Paris.

d’Orbigny, A. 1840-1842. Paléontologie Française. Terrain Crétacé I, Céphalopodes. 662 pp. Masson, Paris.

Schlüter, C. 1871-1876. Cephalopoden der Oberen Deutschen Kreide. Palaeontographica, Erster und zweiter Teil. 263 pp. T. Fisher, Bonn.

Schlüter, C. 1872. Die Spongitarienbänke der oberen Quadratenund unteren Mucronaten-Schichten des Münsterlandes. 20. Hauptversammlung der Deutschen Geologischen Gesellschaft, Sept. 1872. 38 pp. A. Henry, Bonn.

Shimansky, V.N. 1975. Cretaceous Nautiloids. Trudy Paleontologicheskogo Instituta Akademii Nauk SSSR 150, 1-208. [in Russian]

Sowerby, J. 1812-1822. The mineral conchology of Great Britain; or coloured figures and descriptions of those remains of testaceous animals or shells, which have been preserved at various times and depths in the earth. 266 pp. Published by the author, London.

Spath, L.F. 1927. Revision of the Jurassic cephalopod fauna of Kachh (Cutch). Memoir of the Geological Survey of India, Paleontologica Indica, New Series 9(1), 1-71.

Stenzel, H.B. 1964. Living Nautilus, K59-K93. In Moore, R.C. (ed.) Treatise on invertebrate paleontology. Part K. Mollusca 3, Cephalopoda. Geological Society of America & University of Kansas, Lawrence & New York.

Teichert, C. 1947. Notes on Eocene nautiloids from Victoria. Mining Geological Journal 3(1), 40-42.

Teichert, C. 1964. Morphology of hard parts, K13-K53. In Moore, R.C. (ed.) Treatise on invertebrate paleontology. Part K. Mollusca 3, Cephalopoda. Geological Society of America & University of Kansas, Lawrence & New York.

Tintant, H. & Kabamba, M. 1985. The role of the environment in the Nautilaceae, 58-66. In Bayer, U. & Seilacher, A. (eds) Sedimentary and evolutionary cycles. Lecture Notes in Earth Sciences 1.

Wani, R. 2004. Experimental fragmentation patterns of modern Nautilus shells and the implications for fossil cephalopod taphonomy. Lethaia 37, 113-123.View article

Wani, R. 2007. How to recognize in situ fossil cephalopods: evidence from experiments with modern Nautilus. Lethaia 40, 305-311.View article

Wani, R. & Ayyasami, K. 2009. Ontogenetic change and intra-specific variation of shell morphology in the Cretaceous Nautiloid (Cephalopoda, Mollusca) (D’Orbigny, 1840) from the Ariyalur area, southern India. Journal of Paleontology 83(3), 365-378.View article

Ward, P.D. 1980. Comparative shell shape distributions in Jurassic-Cretaceous ammonites and Jurassic-Tertiary nautiloids. Paleobiology 6, 32-43.

Wiedmann, J. 1960. Zur Systematik jungmesozoischer Nautiliden. Palaeontographica, Abteilung A 115, 144-206.

Wiedmann, J. & Schneider, H.L. 1979. Cephalopoden und Alter der Cenoman-Transgression von Mühlheim-Broich, SW-Westfalen, 645-680. In Wiedmann, J. (ed.) Aspekte der Kreide Europas. International Union of Geological Sciences, Series A 6.

Wilmsen, M. 2000. Late Cretaceous nautilids from northern Cantabria, Spain. Acta Geologica Polonica 50(1), 29-43.

Wilmsen, M. & Yazykova, E.A. 2003. Campanian (Late Cretaceous) nautiloids from Sakhalin, Far East Russia. Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 48(3), 481-490.

Wittler, F.A., Roth, R. & Legant, J. 1999. Die Nautiliden der oberen Kreide vom Süd- und Westrand des Münsterländer Beckens. Arbeitskreis Paläontologie Hannower 27, 1-52.

Ziegler, V. 2003. Stratigrafie křídových sedimentů v oblasti Českého ráje. 96 pp. Faculty of Education, Charles University, Prague.