Fossil Friday Roundup: November 16, 2018

Featured Image: Piramys auffenbergi, holotype skull, GSI 18133. From Ferriera et al. (2018), CC-BY.

Papers (All Open Access):

  • The Unfinished Synthesis?: Paleontology and Evolutionary Biology in the 20th Century (Journal of the History of Biology)
  • A general pattern of the species abundance distribution (PeerJ)
  • Negative biotic interactions drive predictions of distributions for species from a grassland community (Biology Letters)
  • Consortium of European Taxonomic Facilities (CETAF) best practices in electronic publishing in taxonomy (European Journal of Taxonomy)
  • Jurassic integrative stratigraphy and timescale of China (Science China Earth Sciences)
  • Cretaceous integrative stratigraphy and timescale of China (Science China Earth Sciences)
  • Dynamic Greenland ice sheet driven by pCO2 variations across the Pliocene Pleistocene transition (Nature Communications)
  • Chironomid-inferred Holocene temperature reconstruction in Basa de la Mora Lake (Central Pyrenees) (The Holocene)
  • Further contributions to the early Miocene forest vegetation of the Galatian Volcanic Province, Turkey (PalaeoE)
  • The two phases of the Cambrian Explosion (Scientific Reports)
  • Microbial-tubeworm associations in a 440 million year old hydrothermal vent community (ProcB)
  • Adult Antarctic krill proves resilient in a simulated high CO2 ocean (Communications Biology)
  • Berriasian planktonic foraminifera and calcareous nannofossils from Crimea Mountains, with reference to microfossil evolution (Swiss Journal of Paleontology)
  • A soil-carrying lacewing larva in Early Cretaceous Lebanese amber (Scientific Reports)
  • Pollinivory and the diversification dynamics of bees (Biology Letters)
  • Messor barbarus ants as soil bioturbators: Implications for granulometry, mineralogical composition and fossil remains extraction in Somosaguas site (Madrid basin, Spain) (CATENA)
  •  Two new Paleozoic Asteroidea (Echinodermata) and their taxonomic and evolutionary significance (Journal of Paleontology)
  • Cretaceous Roveacrinids from Mexico revisited: Overcoming the taxonomic misidentifications and subsequent biostratigraphic abuse (Boletín de la Sociedad Geológica Mexicana)
  • An ancient Turing-like patterning mechanism regulates skin denticle development in sharks (Science Advances)
  • The Definition of Bioregions in Palaeontological Studies of Diversity and Biogeography Affects Interpretations: Palaeozoic Tetrapods as a Case Study (Frontiers in Earth Science)
  • Response From the Authors: A Reassessment of the Taxonomic Position of Mesosaurs, and a Surprising Phylogeny of Early Amniotes (Frontiers in Earth Science)
  • Genetic evidence supports a distinct lineage of American crocodile (Crocodylus acutus) in the Greater Antilles (PLOS ONE)
  • The oldest specialized tetrapod herbivore: A new eupelycosaur from the Permian of New Mexico, USA (PalaeoE)
  • A taxonomic reassessment of Piramys auffenbergi, a neglected turtle from the late Miocene of Piram Island, Gujarat, India (PeerJ)
  • A new microvertebrate assemblage from the Mussentuchit Member, Cedar Mountain Formation: insights into the paleobiodiversity and paleobiogeography of early Late Cretaceous ecosystems in western North America (PeerJ)
  • Comprehensive molecular and cellular studies suggest avian scutate scales are secondarily derived from feathers, and more distant from reptilian scales (Scientific Reports)
  • Smallest known raptor tracks suggest microraptorine activity in lakeshore setting (Scientific Reports)
  • Late Cretaceous sauropod tooth morphotypes may provide supporting evidence for faunal connections between North Africa and Southern Europe (PeerJ)
  • The most complete enantiornithine from North America and a phylogenetic analysis of the Avisauridae (PeerJ)
  • Adaptation and constraint in the evolution of the mammalian backbone (BMC Evolutionary Biology)
  • Pectoral girdle and forelimb musculoskeletal function in the echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus): insights into mammalian locomotor evolution (RSOS)
  • New data on the earliest European ruminant (Mammalia, Artiodactyla): A revision of the fossil mandible from Rusce in the Pčinja basin (late Eocene, Southeastern Serbia) (PalaeoE)
  • Eocene metatherians from Anatolia illuminate the assembly of an island fauna during Deep Time (PLOS ONE)
  • Intraspecific variation in semicircular canal morphology—A missing element in adaptive scenarios?(American Journal of Physical Anthropology)
  • First record of the Miocene hominoid Sivapithecus from Kutch, Gujarat state, western India (PLOS ONE)

PrePrints and PostPrints:

  •  Surface sediment samples from early age of seafloor exploration can provide a late 19th century baseline of the marine environment (BioRXiv)
  • Discussion Paper: Help! I’m an author – get me out of here (Link)
  • Fossils reveal long-term continuous and parallel innovation in the sacro-caudo-pelvic complex of the highly aquatic pipid frogs (PaleorXiv)

Community Events, Society Updates, and Resources:


  • 1st Palaeontological Virtual Congress, December 1–15, 2018 (Link)
  • North American Paleontological Convention June 23–27 2019 (Link)

Society News:

  • Help rebuilding the paleontology collections of Brazil’s National Museum (SVP)

News and Views:

Animals and Anatomy:

Methods and Musings:

Featured Folks, Fieldwork, and Museums:

Arts, Books, Culture, Fun:

Do you have some news, a blog, or something just plain cool you want to share with the PLOS Paleo Community? Email it to us at, tweet it to us at @PLOSPaleo, or message us on Facebook.

Published by Sarah Z. Gibson

Dr. Sarah Z. Gibson is a paleontologist and science communicator based in Minnesota. Her research focuses on the evolutionary history of ray-finned fishes from the Early Mesozoic.

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