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The vertebrates from the Lower Ladinian (Middle Triassic) bonebed of Lamerden (Germany) as palaeoenvironment indicators in the Germanic Basin

Cajus G. Diedrich
Published Online: 2015-11-25 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/geo-2015-0062


A marine/limnic vertebrate fauna is described from the enodis/posseckeri Bonebed mixed in a bivalve shell-rich bioclastic carbonate rudstone at the eastern coastal margin of the Rhenish Massif mainland at Lamerden (Germany) within the western Germanic Basin (Central Europe). The condensation layer is of Fassanian (Ladinian, Middle Triassic) in age. The vertebrate biodiversity includes five different shark, and several actinopterygian fish species represented by teeth and scales. Abundant isolated bones from a small- and a large-sized pachypleurosaur Neusticosaurus species, which can be composed as incomplete skeletons, originate from dense populations of different individual age stages. Important facies indicator reptiles are from the thalattosaur Blezingeria ichthyospondyla which postcranial skeleton is reconstructed hypothetically using additional postcranial bones from similar aged various German localities. The vertebrate biodiversity of the enodis/posseckeri bonebed of Lamerden reflect a limnic/fluvial freshwater influenced fauna (amphibians/terrestrial and marine reptiles) with dominance of normal saline marine influences. Macroalgae meadow adapted placodont reptiles are absent in Lamerden, as well as open marine-adapted ichthyosaurs, supporting a lagoon with fresh water influence position at the Rhenish Massif mainland coast. In those contemporanous brackish lagoons, which seem to be isochronous to northern Tethys lagoons of the Kalschieferzone at the Monte San Giorgio (Switzerland/Italy), small pachypleurosaurs were abundant prey in both regions for reptile predators, especially large paraxial swimming alligator habitus-like Paranothosaurus, which even contain stomach contents of pachypleurosaurs.

Keywords: Bonebed; vertebrate biodiversity; facies; Longobardian (Middle Triassic); vertebrate taphocoenosis; palaeoenvironment; palaeobiogeography; Germanic Basin; Central Europe


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About the article

Received: 2013-01-28

Accepted: 2015-05-21

Published Online: 2015-11-25

Citation Information: Open Geosciences, Volume 7, Issue 1, ISSN (Online) 2391-5447, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/geo-2015-0062.

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©2015 Cajus G. Diedrich. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License. BY-NC-ND 3.0

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