Abstract

Fossil isopod crustaceans in the suborder Phreatoicidea have a known stratigraphic range from the Carboniferous to the Jurassic. Until now, all Mesozoic records of this group were thought to occur in fresh water habitats. A new phreatoicidean isopod fossil of the Triassic Luoping marine fauna, Yunnan Province, China, is described. The new species, based on several exceptionally complete specimens, is assigned to the genus Protamphisopus Nicholls and the family Amphisopidae Nicholls. This Chinese record is the first report of a Mesozoic-age phreatoicidean isopod outside of Gondwanan terranes, requiring a revision of known biogeographic patterns of the Phreatoicidea. Whether this record is from a marine habitat or is the result of a secondary deposition is not certain. Sottyella Racheboef, Schram and Vidal from the Carboniferous (Stephanian) Lagerstätte of Montceau-les-Mines that was assigned to this suborder may be a decapod. Therefore, it has no relationship to this new species.

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