Abstract

Trilobites are important elements of the Devonian macrobenthos; some of them were collected in the Chefar el Ahmar Formation, from two sections located near Béni Abbès in the Saoura Valley (Ougarta Basin, Saharan Algeria). This formation is characterized by alternations of claystones and limestones, and it is considered to be late Emsian to early Frasnian in age. Only the lower part of this formation has yielded trilobites so far; their presence has been known for a long time. Phacopines clearly dominate the trilobite assemblages, with Austerops, Barrandeops, Chotecops and Phacops s.l. as the main genera. Two new species are described (Austerops salamandaroides sp. nov. and Phacops ouarouroutensis sp. nov.), while some other taxa are presented in open nomenclature. Comparisons are made with closely allied species. These new trilobite occurrences have been analysed in terms of their intra- and interspecific variability and biodiversity. The occurrence of Struveaspis maroccanica, previously known from the Saoura Valley, provides an early Eifelian age, which is also confirmed by the presence of trilobites Thysanopeltis and Koneprusites, and ostracods Bairdiocypris devonica and Bufina ?subovalis.

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