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Coral-crinoid biocoenosis and resulting trace fossils from the Middle Devonian of the Eifel Synclines (Rhenish Massif, Germany)

Jan Bohaty, William I. Ausich, Elise Nardin, Christian Nyhuis and Stefan Schroeder
Coral-crinoid biocoenosis and resulting trace fossils from the Middle Devonian of the Eifel Synclines (Rhenish Massif, Germany)
Journal of Paleontology (March 2012) 86 (2): 282-301

Abstract

Fossil echinoderms are a rich source of information concerning biotic interactions. In this study we analyzed the premortem encrustation of the highly specialized Middle Devonian rugose corals Aspasmophyllum crinophilum and ?"Adradosia" sp. on camerate crinoid stems. Aspasmophyllum infested living crinoid stems by sclerenchymal outgrowth that formed a skeletal ring but ?"Adradosia" sp. encrusted the stems rapidly, without building a ring. These coral-crinoid biocoenoses indicate a settlement advantage for the rugose corals within densely populated communities of the lower Givetian. The corals could be interpreted as large epizoozoans that benefited as secondary tierers reaching relatively high tiering levels. It also suggests the ability for the affected crinoids to repel the coral by overgrowing the corallite with a local increased stereomic growth. Because the crinoid axial canals are not penetrated, the corals cannot be considered as predators or parasites of crinoids. Therefore, the described biocoenosis is interpreted as commensalism. The species A. crinophilum is redescribed, and a neotype is defined, because of the loss of the initial types. Two types of ichnofossils can be attributed to the premortem encrustation of both corals. They are described as Ostiocavichnus n. ichnogen. and are attributed to the stereomic response of the infested hosts. These swellings are characterized as either elliptical (Ostiocavichnus ovalis n. ichnogen. n. ichnosp. due to the assumed reaction of A. crinophilum) or subcircular concavities (O. rotundatus n. ichnogen. n. ichnosp. due to the reaction of ?"Adradosia sp.").


ISSN: 0022-3360
EISSN: 1937-2337
Coden: JPALAZ
Serial Title: Journal of Paleontology
Serial Volume: 86
Serial Issue: 2
Title: Coral-crinoid biocoenosis and resulting trace fossils from the Middle Devonian of the Eifel Synclines (Rhenish Massif, Germany)
Affiliation: Universitaet zu Koeln, Institut fuer Geologie und Mineralogie, Koln, Germany
Pages: 282-301
Published: 201203
Text Language: English
Publisher: Paleontological Society, Lawrence, KS, United States
References: 104
Accession Number: 2012-034029
Categories: Invertebrate paleontology
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Annotation: Includes appendix
Illustration Description: illus. incl. 1 table, geol. sketch map
N50°12'00" - N50°19'60", E06°27'00" - E06°46'60"
Secondary Affiliation: Ohio State University, USA, United States
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2017, American Geosciences Institute. Abstract, Copyright, The Paleontological Society. Reference includes data from GeoScienceWorld, Alexandria, VA, United States
Update Code: 201218
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