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Castel Guelfo di Bologna, Italy

Boris S.,Russian Academy of Sciences | Julia S.,Queens University of Belfast | Bruno D.,Museo di Zoologia
Ruthenica | Year: 2016

The polyplacophoran genus Hanleya contains two similar species in the Northeast Atlantic, H. hanleyi (Bean in Thorpe, 1844) and H. nagelfar (Lovén, 1846), which were primarily differentiated by dramatic difference in size but also in part by distribution and minor morphological and ecological features. The question of whether these two names represent two species or whether H. nagelfar is merely a name for H. hanleyi that have grown to extraordinary size, has been raised repeatedly since 1865. The problem was protracted by inaccessibility of the type specimen for the senior species name, and a lack of material collected near the type locality of H. hanleyi, both issues which we resolved in the course of this study. We examined the details of valves, girdle armature, and radula in specimens of Hanleya hanleyi from the Mediterranean Sea and Scotland. The similarity of relevant features among small specimens of H. hanleyi and H. nagelfar from Scotland, the Mediterranean Sea, Norway and Newfoundland Bank and the type specimen of Hanleya hanleyi suggests the two species are synonymous. Hanleya nagelfar is a junior synonym of H. hanleyi. Finally we note the eggs of H. hanleyi contain an unusual large drop of lipid that may increase their floatation. We propose that the eggs and larvae of H. hanleyi have an extended pelagic distribution and this extended dispersal period may connect populations from bathyal habitats in the slope of Newfoundland Bank via surface currents of the Gulf Stream System to northward and eastward in the Atlantic ocean. © Ruthenica, 2016. Source

A new species of Stenoplax from the Miocene (Tortonian) of Rio di Bocca d'Asino (Alessandria, Piedmont) is described in this paper. Valves of Stenoplax paviai n. sp. are frequent in the fossiliferous deposit in the lower part of the Marne di Sant'Agata Fossili at Rio di Bocca d'Asino. The new species is characterized by the depressed and elongate tail valve and the characteristic sculpturing of the head valve, lateral areas of intermediate valves, and postmucronal area of tail valve, which all have close-set, irregularly undulate concentric grooves. S. paviai n. sp. differs from the four Stenoplax species known from Eocene/Oligocene deposits of Europe and represents the last occcurrence in Europe of this genus, that is presently documented in the tropical eastern Pacific, the Caribbean, the Indo Pacific, Japan, and the western Atlantic (Brazil). Source

Scarponi D.,University of Bologna | Bella G.D.,Museo Geologico Giovanni Capellini | Dell'Angelo B.,Museo di Zoologia | Huntley J.W.,University of Missouri
Acta Palaeontologica Polonica | Year: 2016

The late Badenian (early Serravallian) conoideans from the Pidhirtsi Beds of western Ukraine (central Paratethys) have been investigated by means of a comprehensive and easy-to-perform morphometric approach, allowing the characterisation of eleven species, of which seven are new to science: Mangelia angulicosta sp. nov., M. larga sp. nov., M. pseudorugulosa sp. nov., M. odovychenae sp. nov., Bela varovtsiana sp. nov., Bela? robusta sp. nov., Pyrgocythara turrispiralata sp. nov. Additionally we also identified Raphitoma cf. R. ringicula, Andonia sp. aff. A. transsylvanica, Teretia cf. T. turritelloides, and Haedropleura sp. aff. H. septangularis. The relative high number of new species documented, relative to the total previously known from this stratigraphic interval, is interpreted as resulting mainly from combined methodological (dearth of taxonomic studies on Ukrainian conoideans) and environmental (high degree of habitat fragmentation in reef setting) factors. The conoideans documented herein add important information regarding palaeoclimaticalogical and palaeobiogeographical interpretations of the Serravallian Paratethys. The conoideans display strong affinity at the species level and complete overlap at the genus level with Neogene Proto-Mediterranean-Atlantic conoideans, thereby challenging the interpretation of late Badenian Paratethyan macrofaunal assemblage endemism. The lack of typical warm-water indicators (e.g., Conidae, Clavatulidae, or Pseudomelatomidae) within the studied material supports the interpretation that the fauna thrived during the late phase and/or soon after the Middle Miocene Climatic Transition (14.2-13.8 Ma). © 2016 D. Scarponi et al. Source

Dell'Angelo B.,Museo di Zoologia | Giuntelli P.,University of Turin | Zunino M.,University of Turin
Rivista Italiana di Paleontologia e Stratigrafia | Year: 2015

This study describes the chiton fauna (Mollusca, Polyplacophora) from deposits of the Miocene marine sequence of North Italy, located in Piedmont and Emilia Romagna regions. This first part of the work describes the chitons pertaining to four families: Leptochitonidae, Hanleyidae, Ischnochitonidae and Callistoplacidae. The studied fossils consist of 391 valves from 13 sites (Sciolze, Valle Ceppi, Rocco di Passerano, Albugnano, Monchio di Sarzano Casina, Villa Monti, Rio di Bocca d'Asino, Sant'Agata Fossili, Vargo, Vigole-no, Montegibbio, Borelli, and Moncucco Torinese) ranging from the early Miocene (Burdigalian) to the late Miocene (Messinian). We identified 16 species, 12 of which were already known, two are identified only at generic level (Stenosemus sp. A & sp. B), and two are described as new: Parachiton statianus sp. n., and Callistochiton borel-lianus sp. n. Some species found are particularly noteworthy; Lepido-pleurus benoisti is the new name attributed to the species previously known as Middendorffia subcajetana or Gymnoplax orbignyi, based on the study of the type material; Leptochiton salicensis, previously known only from the early Pleistocene of Salice (Messina, Sicily); Hanleya mediterranea is reported for the first time from the Miocene of Italy; Ischnochiton ligusticus, previously known only from the early Pliocene of Western Liguria; the distribution of Stenoplax paviai, recently described from the late Miocene (Rio di Bocca d'Asino), is extended to the early Miocene (Langhian). A complete discussion on the chiton fauna from the North Italian Miocene, consisting of all the species treated in both parts, will be given in the second part of this work. Source

Garilli V.,Paleosofia APEMA Research and Educational Service | Parrinello D.,University of Palermo | Dell'Angelo B.,Museo di Zoologia
Palaeontologia Electronica | Year: 2015

Deep-sea wood-falls are important biodiversity hot spots for insights on chemosynthesis-based communities. The study of deep-sea wood-fall-related palaeocommunities from the Neogene of north Italy shed light on interesting associations from the Miocene of Torrente Cinghio (Tortonian) and of Moncasale di Casina (Langhian). The most common components of this association are typical chemosynthetic/wood-fall molluscs, such as the gastropods Homalopoma sp. and Pseudonina bellardii, the bivalves Idas sp. and shipworms, and the chiton Leptochiton lignatilis n. sp., which belongs to a genus typical of recent sunken woods in tropical waters. The new species described is compared with other fossil and recent congeners, especially with those sharing the same kind of tegmental sculpture, fully covered with randomly or quincuncially arranged granules. An overview of the sunken wood-related chitons is provided. Surprisingly no taxa of the boring bivalves of the family Xylophagidae, whose species have been known to be fundamental for sustaining this kind of deep sea chemosynthetic ecosystem, were found in the studied site; however, other boring Teredinidae bivalves have been abundantly recovered. This suggests that, conversely to what has previously been observed on sunken wood communities, Teredinidae may be viewed as a counterpart for the maintenance of deep-sea wood-fall ecosystems. © Palaeontological Association August 2015 Source

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