An Early Silurian (Aeronian) cephalopod fauna from Kopet-Dagh, north-eastern Iran: including the earliest records of non-orthocerid cephalopods from the Silurian of Northern Gondwana


Authors: Evans DH, Ghobadi Pour M, Popov LE, Jahangir H

Published in: Bulletin of Geosciences, volume 90, issue 2; pages: 479 - 507; Received 17 October 2014; Accepted in revised form 23 February 2015; Online 19 March 2015

Keywords: Llandovery, Aeronian, Cephalopoda, palaebiogeography, peri-Gondwana,

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The cephalopod fauna from the Aeronian Qarebil Limestone of north-eastern Iran comprises the first comprehensive record of early Silurian cephalopods from peri-Gondwana. Although consisting of relatively few taxa, the assemblage includes members of the orders Oncocerida, Discosorida, Barrandeocerida and Orthocerida. Coeval records of several of these taxa are from low palaeolatitude locations that include Laurentia, Siberia, Baltica and Avalonia, and are otherwise unknown from peri-Gondwana until later in the Silurian. The cephalopod assemblage occurs in cephalopod limestones that currently represent the oldest record of such limestones in the Silurian of the peri-Gondwana margin. The appearance of these cephalopods, together with the development of cephalopod limestones may be attributed to the relatively low latitudinal position of central Iran and Kopet-Dagh compared with that of the west Mediterranean sector during the Aeronian. This, combined with the continued post-glacial warming after the Hirnantian glaciation, facilitated the initiation of carbonate deposition and conditions suitable for the development of the cephalopod limestones whilst permitting the migration of cephalopod taxa, many of which were previously restricted to lower latitudes.


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