Abstract

Many of the most diverse clades of Late Palaeozoic echinoids (sea urchins) originated in the Devonian period. Our understanding of diversity dynamics of these Late Palaeozoic clades are thus informed by new systematic descriptions of some of their earliest members. The Proterocidaridae are a diverse and morphologically distinct clade of stem group echinoids with flattened tests and enlarged adoral pore pairs, which are first known from the Upper Devonian. We herein report on a new species of Hyattechinus, Hyattechinus anglicus n. sp., from the Upper Devonian of the North Devon Basin, Devon, UK. This is the first Devonian Hyattechinus known from outside of the Appalachian Basin, USA, and provides novel information regarding the palaeogeographic and stratigraphic distribution of proterocidarids in Late Devonian times. We additionally update the stratigraphic distribution of Devonian Hyattechinus from the Appalachian Basin, following recent biostratigraphic resolution of their occurrences. Hyattechinus appears to have been present in the Rheic echinoderm fauna during Late Devonian times, and comparison of the palaeoenvironmental setting of Hyattechinus anglicus with that of other Hyattechinus from the Famennian of the Appalachian Basin suggests that the genus may have preferred siliciclastic settings. Furthermore, this new taxon increases the diversity of echinoids from the Upper Devonian of Devon to three species.

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