Current IF 1.283
Latest issue (RSS 2.0)
Contact Editorial Office at
Bulletin of Geosciences
Published by ©
Czech Geological Survey,
W. Bohemia Museum Pilsen
ISSN: 1802-8225 (online),
Sequential, multi-taxon encrustation of an orthoceratid cephalopod by stalked blastozoan echinoderms in the middle Silurian (Wenlock Series) of southeastern Indiana, USA
Published in: Bulletin of Geosciences, volume 96, issue 1; pages: 53 - 59; Received 18 August 2020; Accepted in revised form 6 November 2020; Online 27 November 2020
Keywords: Diploporita, Rhombifera, Massie Formation, Sheinwoodian, biotic interactions, attachment structures,
AbstractAn orthoceratid cephalopod serving as a substratum for rare encrustation relationships is herein described from the middle Silurian (Wenlock Series, Sheinwoodian Stage) Massie Formation of southeastern Indiana, USA. The partial orthoconic cephalopod phragmocone is preserved as a flattened internal mold with some remnant shell material. The more damaged (presumably upward-facing) side is encrusted by the thecal attachment structure of a trematocystinid holocystitid diploporitan (probably Paulicystis), which is, in turn, encrusted by a dendritic attachment structure attributable to the hemicosmitid rhombiferan Caryocrinites. This represents an unusual form of multigenerational encrustation by blastozoan pelmatozoans; an encrustation that did not culminate in overgrowth of the cephalopod substratum. More importantly, this occurrence demonstrates preferential use of echinoderm remains as settling sites for later encrusting echinoderms, despite class-level taxonomic differences, and represents an additional example of utilization of a discrete macrofossil - and a rarely reported example of a coeval echinoderm attachment structure - as a substratum for Caryocrinites attachment. Collectively, this material indicates that pelmatozoan encrustation of bioclasts in otherwise softground substrates is controlled by more complex factors than mere occurrence of available biomineralized material.
Bockelie, J.F. 1984. The Diploporita of the Oslo region, Norway. Palaeontology 27, 1-27.
Brett, C.E. 1978. Attachment structures in the rhombiferan Caryocrinites and their paleobiological implications. Journal of Paleontology 52, 717-726.
Brett, C.E. 1981. Terminology and functional morphology of attachment structures in pelmatozoan echinoderms. Lethaia 14, 343-370.
Brett, C.E. 1984. Autecology of Silurian pelmatozoan echinoderms, 87-120. In Bassett, M.G. & Lawson, J.D. (eds) Autecology of Silurian organisms, Special Papers in Palaeontology 32.
Brett, C.E. 1991. Organism-sediment relationships in Silurian marine environments, 301-344. In Bassett, M.G., Lane, E.D. & Edwards, D. (eds) The Murchison symposium: proceedings of an international symposium on the Silurian System, Special Papers in Palaeontology 44.
Brett, C.E., Cramer, B.D., McLaughlin, P.I., Kleffner, M.A., Showers, W.J. & Thomka, J.R. 2012. Revised Telychian-Sheinwoodian (Silurian) stratigraphy of the Laurentian mid-continent: Building uniform nomenclature along the Cincinnati Arch. Bulletin of Geosciences 87, 733-753.
Foerste, A.F. 1897. A report on the Middle and Upper Silurian rocks of Clark, Jefferson, Ripley, Jennings, and southern Decatur Counties, Indiana. Indiana Department of Geology and Natural Resources Annual Report 21, 213-288.
Frest, T.J., Brett, C.E. & Witzke, B.J. 1999. Caradocian to Gedinnian echinoderm associations of central and eastern North America, 638-783. In Boucot, A.J. & Lawson, J.D. (eds) Paleocommunities: a case study from the Silurian and Lower Devonian. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
Frest, T.J., Strimple, H.L. & Paul, C.R.C. 2011. The North American Holocystites fauna (Echinodermata, Blastozoa: Diploporita): Paleobiology and systematics. Bulletins of American Paleontology 380, 1-141.
Gil Cid, M.D. & Domínguez-Alonso, P. 2000. Attachment strategies in Diploporita inhabiting soft-substratum communities, 83-86. In Barker, M. (ed.) Echinoderms 2000. Swets and Zeitlinger, Lisse.
Paul, C.R.C. 1971. Revision of the Holocystites fauna (Diploporita) of North America. Fieldiana: Geology 24, 1-166.
Paul, C.R.C. & Bockelie, J.F. 1983. Evolution and functional morphology of the cystoid Sphaeronites in Britain and Scandinavia. Palaeontology 26, 687-734.
Sprinkle, J. 1973. Morphology and evolution of blastozoan echinoderms. 283 pp. Harvard University Museum of Comparative Zoology Special Publication, Cambridge.
Sumrall, C.D. 2000. The biological implications of an edrioasteroid attached to a pleurocystitid rhombiferan. Journal of Paleontology 74, 67-71.
Taylor, P.D. 1990. Preservation of soft-bodied and other organisms by bioimmuration?A review. Palaeontology 33, 1-17.
Thomka, J.R. & Brett, C.E. 2014a. Diploporite (Echinodermata, Blastozoa) thecal attachment structures from the Silurian of southeastern Indiana. Journal of Paleontology 88, 179-186.
Thomka, J.R. & Brett, C.E. 2014b. Taphonomy of diploporite (Echinodermata) holdfasts from a Silurian hardground, southeastern Indiana, United States: Palaeoecologic and stratigraphic significance. Geological Magazine 151, 649-665.
Thomka, J.R. & Brett, C.E. 2015a. Paleoecology of pelmatozoan attachment structures from a hardground surface in the middle Silurian Massie Formation, southeastern Indiana. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 420, 1-12.
Thomka, J.R. & Brett, C.E. 2015b. Palaeontological and sedimentological effects of micro-bioherms in the Middle Silurian Massie Formation of southeastern Indiana, USA. Lethaia 48, 172-187.
Thomka, J.R., Brett, C.E., Bantel, T.E., Young, A.L. & Bissett, D.L. 2016. Taphonomy of ’cystoids’ (Echinodermata: Diploporita) from the Napoleon quarry of southeastern Indiana, USA: The Lower Silurian Massie Formation as an atypical Lagerstätte. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 443, 263-277.
Zatoń, M. & Vinn, O. 2011. Microconchids and the rise of modern encrusting communities. Lethaia 44, 5-7.