Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Paleontology Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

1,516 Full-Text Articles 1,623 Authors 236,075 Downloads 98 Institutions

All Articles in Paleontology

Faceted Search

1,516 full-text articles. Page 1 of 28.

An Evaluation Of Castor Californicus And Implications For The Evolution And Distribution Of The Genus Castor (Rodentia: Castoridae) In North America, Kelly Lubbers 2022 East Tennessee State University

An Evaluation Of Castor Californicus And Implications For The Evolution And Distribution Of The Genus Castor (Rodentia: Castoridae) In North America, Kelly Lubbers

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

The genus Castor is represented in Eurasia by Castor fiber, North America by C. canadensis, and has been in North America since the late Miocene. This study aims to assess whether morphology of Miocene-Pliocene C. californicus and extant C. canadensis are distinctly different. Specimens of Castor were compared using geometric morphometrics on cranial material and linear measurements of postcranial material. Species occurrence data were compared with past and future climate data to assess Castor distribution in North America through time. Results show that C. canadensis is highly variable in both cranial and postcranial morphology and C. californicus falls largely within ...


The Paleoecology Of High-Elevation Bison In The Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem And Implications For Modern Bison Conservation, Darian Bouvier 2022 East Tennessee State University

The Paleoecology Of High-Elevation Bison In The Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem And Implications For Modern Bison Conservation, Darian Bouvier

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

The national mammal of the United States, the American Bison (Bison bison) was once nearly extinct. Populations have recovered to the degree that thousands roam the Great Plains today. Due to their large numbers and body size, this species has an oversized impact on the ecological communities where it lives and is considered a keystone herbivore in modern North American grasslands. This study explores the detailed, seasonally resolved, paleoecology of seven bison from the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem during the Late Holocene through stable isotope analyses and species niche modeling. Isotopic analyses of δ13C, δ15N, and δ ...


A Faunal Composition Of The Late Cretaceous Blue Springs Site In Northeastern Mississippi And Evidence For Potential Paleoenvironmental Differences Between Beds, Ginger Trochesset 2022 University of Southern Mississippi

A Faunal Composition Of The Late Cretaceous Blue Springs Site In Northeastern Mississippi And Evidence For Potential Paleoenvironmental Differences Between Beds, Ginger Trochesset

Honors Theses

The Maastrichtian-age Blue Springs locality of the Coon Creek Member of the Ripley Formation is known for abundant, well-preserved marine fossils, including many genera of microfossils, bivalves, gastropods, decapods, cephalopods, actinopterygians, and other vertebrate organisms. This research contributes to the understanding of the paleontology of the site, as well as the changing paleoenvironmental conditions of the beds throughout deposition.

This project analyzed bulk material collected in 2021 from three fossiliferous beds at Blue Springs: the Lower Corbula Bed (Bed C), the Pebble Bed (Bed G), and the Exogyra-Pycnodonte Bed (Bed J). Unconsolidated material from Beds C and J was processed ...


The Diatom Dark Ages: Identification Of Mid-Cretaceous Arctic Platform Diatoms From The Basal Transgression Of The Kanguk Formation, Devon Island, Nunavut, Canada, Megan Heins 2022 University of Nebraska-Lincoln

The Diatom Dark Ages: Identification Of Mid-Cretaceous Arctic Platform Diatoms From The Basal Transgression Of The Kanguk Formation, Devon Island, Nunavut, Canada, Megan Heins

Dissertations & Theses in Earth and Atmospheric Sciences

The lower part of the mid-Cretaceous Kanguk Formation (Lower Turonian interval) contains an important paleontological record crucial to the characterization of a poorly known interval of fossil marine diatoms history. Kanguk Formation mudstones are exposed in a ~200 m-thick section on Devon Island, Nunavut, Canadian High Arctic. Diatoms at this location are well-preserved due to shallow burial on this Arctic Platform site. The rock sequence was protected from glacial erosion that removed much of the Cretaceous record by being down-faulted in a linear graben. Study of these well-preserved fossil diatoms allows for a documentation of the assemblage, identification of potentially ...


Complex Unicellular Microfossils From The 1.9 Ga Gunflint Chert, Canada, Ana L. González Flores 2022 The University of Western Ontario

Complex Unicellular Microfossils From The 1.9 Ga Gunflint Chert, Canada, Ana L. González Flores

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

The presence of eukaryotic life during the early Paleoproterozoic has been a matter of debate because well-preserved fossils older than 1.8 Ga rarely exhibit eukaryotic cellular microstructures. In this study, microfossils from the 1.9 Ga Gunflint Chert were studied using the extended-focal-depth imaging technique, combined with scanning electron microscopy, resulting in recognition of three types of large (10–35 μm diameter) complex unicellular bodies (CUBs) and one type of “multicellular body” (< 50 μm diameter). The CUBs show the following eukaryotic cyst-like structures: (1) radially arranged internal strands similar to those in some acritarchs and dinoflagellates; (2) regularly spaced long tubular processes, stubby pustules, and/or robust podia on the cell surface; (3) reticulate cell-wall sculpturing such as pits, ridges, and scale-like ornaments; and (4) internal bodies that may represent membrane-bounded organelles. These morphological features provide strong evidence for the presence of protists in the late Paleoproterozoic.

Among the three types of CUBs from the Gunflint microbiota, a new species, Germinosphaera gunflinta sp. nov., was recognized. This species has the diagnostic characteristics of Germinosphaera ...


Functional Morphology And Taphonomy Of Ordovician–Silurian Diploporan Echinoderms, Stephen Ashley Hill 2022 University of South Florida

Functional Morphology And Taphonomy Of Ordovician–Silurian Diploporan Echinoderms, Stephen Ashley Hill

USF Tampa Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Diploporan echinoderms were one of the most speciose groups of stemmed echinoderms during the Ordovician. Despite this widespread abundance, the fossil record of diploporan fauna consists primarily of incomplete specimens, with complete specimens being rare. While the theca, or body, is more commonly preserved, the feeding appendages and the attachment structures (i.e. stems or holdfasts) are seldomly preserved. Insight into these features is highly valuable to the understanding the paleoecology, like the feeding and respiratory strategies, of these enigmatic creatures.

One group of diploporan echinoderms which does have an extensive fossil record, is the Holocystites Fauna, primarily known from ...


Stable Carbon And Oxygen Isotopes Of Early Silurian Pentameride Brachiopods From Québec, Ontario, And Nunavut, And Paleoenvironmental Implications, Jordan N. Siewnarine 2022 The University of Western Ontario

Stable Carbon And Oxygen Isotopes Of Early Silurian Pentameride Brachiopods From Québec, Ontario, And Nunavut, And Paleoenvironmental Implications, Jordan N. Siewnarine

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

Analysis of low-Mg calcite brachiopod shells for δ18O and δ13C signatures provide quantitative independent geochemical data for paleoenvironmental interpretations. We analyzed 59 brachiopod shells from lower Silurian carbonate rocks of Anticosti Island, the Hudson Bay Lowlands and Niagara regions for spaciotemporal isotopic trends for the early Silurian. Screening tests using scanning electron microscopy, cathodoluminescence and trace element analysis demonstrate exceptional preservation, suggesting retention of primary isotopic values.

δ13C and δ18O values of shells range from 0.2‰ to 2.9‰ and -6.9‰ to -4.3‰ (VPDB), respectively. Temporally, increases in δ ...


Analysis Of Fossil Pollen From A Pleistocene Cypress Forest Preserved On The Northern Gulf Of Mexico Continental Shelf, Kathryn Joyce Garretson 2022 The University of Southern Mississippi

Analysis Of Fossil Pollen From A Pleistocene Cypress Forest Preserved On The Northern Gulf Of Mexico Continental Shelf, Kathryn Joyce Garretson

Master's Theses

This study presents the findings of fossil pollen analysis performed on terrestrial sediments preserved on the northern Gulf of Mexico continental shelf (site hereafter known as the Underwater Forest or DF). This research aims to establish vegetation composition on a continental shelf glacial refuge and provide a better understanding of vegetation response to sea-level rise. Two cores (15DF1 and 15DF3B) located at different locations within the forest were recovered and analyzed. Pollen results from both cores were similar, with high percentages of Taxodium and Nyssa pollen in the lowermost sections reflecting an assemblage typical of contemporary baldcypress swamps. Pollen assemblages ...


Reconstructing The Ecological Relationships Of Late Cretaceous Antarctic Dinosaurs And How Functional Tooth Morphology Influenced These Relationships, Ian D. Broxson 2022 Eastern Washington University

Reconstructing The Ecological Relationships Of Late Cretaceous Antarctic Dinosaurs And How Functional Tooth Morphology Influenced These Relationships, Ian D. Broxson

2022 Symposium

The Sandwich Bluff Formation of the James Ross Basin of Antarctica has recently yielded a group of five late Cretaceous dinosaurs that lived contemporaneously with each other, a first for Antarctica. These five dinosaurs include fragmentary remains of two differently sized elasmarian ornithopods, a possible megaraptor, a hadrosaur, and a nodosaur. In this study we will construct a model of the ecological relationships of late Cretaceous Antarctica. Additionally, we will look at what specific factors allowed this group of four herbivores and a carnivore to coexist in a restricted locality and what niches were filled by each species. Methods to ...


Interdisciplinary Studies Masters Degree In Anthropological & Science Based Education, Robert Porter 2022 California State University, San Bernardino

Interdisciplinary Studies Masters Degree In Anthropological & Science Based Education, Robert Porter

Electronic Theses, Projects, and Dissertations

The goal of this project is to develop anthropological and science-based curricula that will emphasize a place-based approach while actively engaging students in their education. I developed two curricula for elementary aged students in San Bernardino. The first curriculum was based anthropologically on the local history of indigenous groups and early San Bernardino history. The second was based on paleontology here in California with a focus on dinosaurs and fossils.

To improve and validate the curricula I sent the examples to educational experts and had them critique the lessons and information provided. Then I used their input to improve the ...


The Effects Of Hybridization On Skeletal Morphology In Two Closely Related Populations Of Rhesus Macaques (Macaca Mulatta): A Geometric Morphometric Approach, Cody Zachery Schumacher 2022 University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

The Effects Of Hybridization On Skeletal Morphology In Two Closely Related Populations Of Rhesus Macaques (Macaca Mulatta): A Geometric Morphometric Approach, Cody Zachery Schumacher

Theses and Dissertations

Precise identification and classification techniques are vital for the field of paleoanthropology to ensure that hominin fossilized remains are labeled accurately. The morphology of extinct hominin specimens will typically be compared to extant nonhuman primate species because of how closely related they are phylogenetically. Observable similarities in their morphological variation can be examined to infer which traits may be a result of evolution and this can update our understanding of their evolutionary relationships. The genus Macaca displays a level of morphological variation that is similar to that seen in the genus Homo, therefore macaques can be used as an analogous ...


Halodash: The Deep And Shallow History Of Aquatic Life's Passages Between Marine And Freshwater Habitats, Eric T. Schultz, Lisa Park Boush 2022 University of Connecticut - Storrs

Halodash: The Deep And Shallow History Of Aquatic Life's Passages Between Marine And Freshwater Habitats, Eric T. Schultz, Lisa Park Boush

EEB Articles

This series of papers highlights research into how biological exchanges between salty and freshwater habitats have transformed the biosphere. Life in the ocean and in freshwaters have long been intertwined; multiple major branches of the tree of life originated in the oceans and then adapted to and diversified in freshwaters. Similar exchanges continue to this day, including some species that continually migrate between marine and fresh waters. The series addresses key themes of transitions, transformations, and current threats with a series of questions: When did major colonizations of fresh waters happen? What physiographic changes facilitated transitions? What organismal characteristics facilitate ...


Rodent Dental Microwear Texture Analysis As A Proxy For Fine-Scale Paleoenvironment Reconstruction, Jenny H. E. Burgman 2022 University of Arkansas, Fayetteville

Rodent Dental Microwear Texture Analysis As A Proxy For Fine-Scale Paleoenvironment Reconstruction, Jenny H. E. Burgman

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Dental microwear texture analysis (DMTA) of fossil fauna has become a valuable tool for dietary inference and paleoenvironment reconstruction. Most of this work has utilized larger taxa with larger home ranges. These studies may result in broader-scale habitat inferences that could mask the details of complex mosaic habitats. Rodent DMTA offers an opportunity to work at finer spatial scales because most species have smaller home ranges. Rodents are also keystone species within their ecosystems, abundant, ubiquitous, and found in many fossil deposits. These attributes make them excellent proxies for environmental reconstructions. However, the application of DMTA to rodents remains relatively ...


Nebraska Statewide Groundwater-Level Monitoring Report 2021, Aaron R. Young, Mark E. Burbach, Leslie M. Howard, Sue Olafsen Lackey, Robert Matthew Joeckel 2022 University of Nebraska at Lincoln

Nebraska Statewide Groundwater-Level Monitoring Report 2021, Aaron R. Young, Mark E. Burbach, Leslie M. Howard, Sue Olafsen Lackey, Robert Matthew Joeckel

Conservation and Survey Division

This report is a synthesis of groundwater-level monitoring programs in Nebraska. It is a continuation of the series of annual reports and maps produced by the Conservation and Survey Division (CSD) of the University of Nebraska in cooperation with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) since the 1950s. Groundwater-level monitoring began in Nebraska in 1930 in an effort to survey the state’s groundwater resources and to observe changes in its availability on a continuing basis. The CSD and USGS cooperatively developed, maintained, and operated an observation-well network throughout the state. These two agencies were responsible for collecting and archiving ...


A Newly Recognized Theropod Assemblage From The Lewisville Formation (Woodbine Group; Cenomanian) And Its Implications For Understanding Late Cretaceous Appalachian Terrestrial Ecosystems, Christopher R. Noto, Domenic C. D'Amore, Stephanie K. Drumheller, Thomas L. Adams 2022 University of Wisconsin-Parkside

A Newly Recognized Theropod Assemblage From The Lewisville Formation (Woodbine Group; Cenomanian) And Its Implications For Understanding Late Cretaceous Appalachian Terrestrial Ecosystems, Christopher R. Noto, Domenic C. D'Amore, Stephanie K. Drumheller, Thomas L. Adams

Articles & Book Chapters

While the terrestrial fossil record of the mid-Cretaceous interval (Aptian to Cenomanian) in North America has been poorly studied, the recent focus on fossil localities from the western United States has offered a more detailed picture of vertebrate diversity, ecosystem dynamics and faunal turnover that took place on the western landmass of Laramidia. This is in stark contrast to the terrestrial record from the eastern landmass of Appalachia, where vertebrate fossils are rare and consist mostly of isolated and fragmentary remains. However, a detailed understanding of these fossil communities during this interval is necessary for comparison of the faunal patterns ...


Baseflow And Water Resilience Variability In Two Water Management Units In Southeastern Brazil, Lucas Vituri Santarosa, Didier Gastmans, Troy E. Gilmore, Jan Boll, Sebastian Balbin Betancur, Vitor Fidelis Monteiro Gonçalves 2022 São Paulo State University

Baseflow And Water Resilience Variability In Two Water Management Units In Southeastern Brazil, Lucas Vituri Santarosa, Didier Gastmans, Troy E. Gilmore, Jan Boll, Sebastian Balbin Betancur, Vitor Fidelis Monteiro Gonçalves

Conservation and Survey Division

Changes in climate and water demand in densely populated regions increasingly affect hydrological systems, and, in turn, impact socioeconomic conditions. In this case study, we identify how the hydrogeological frameworks of two water resource management units, Tietê-Jacaré (TJ) and Piracicaba-Capivari-Jundiaí (PCJ) in Sao Paulo state (Brazil), control the baseflow processes and resilience in the face of streamflow fluctuations in response to anthropogenic activities and climate variation. The results reveal between 40% and 75% contributions of baseflow to total streamflow in basins overlying crystalline and sedimentary aquifers. The basins in PCJ which mostly overly crystalline aquifers, have shorter water residence times ...


Male Mastodon Landscape Use Changed With Maturation (Late Pleistocene, North America), Joshua H. Miller, Daniel C. Fisher, Brooke E. Crowley, Ross Secord, Bledar A. Konomi 2022 University of Cincinnati

Male Mastodon Landscape Use Changed With Maturation (Late Pleistocene, North America), Joshua H. Miller, Daniel C. Fisher, Brooke E. Crowley, Ross Secord, Bledar A. Konomi

Papers in the Earth and Atmospheric Sciences

Under harsh Pleistocene climates, migration and other forms of seasonally patterned landscape use were likely critical for reproductive success of mastodons (Mammut americanum) and other megafauna. However, little is known about how their geographic ranges and mobility fluctuated seasonally or changed with sexual maturity. We used a spatially explicit movement model that coupled strontium and oxygen isotopes from two serially sampled intervals (5+ adolescent years and 3+ adult years) in a male mastodon tusk to test for changes in landscape use associated with maturation and reproductive phenology. The mastodon’s early adolescent home range was geographically restricted, with no evidence ...


Strange Stones Of Skull Creek: Basalt Glacial Erratics And Omars In Eastern Nebraska, Robert M. Joeckel, Jesse T. Korus, Judith Turk, C. C. Arps, N. V. Arps, Leslie M. Howard 2022 University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Strange Stones Of Skull Creek: Basalt Glacial Erratics And Omars In Eastern Nebraska, Robert M. Joeckel, Jesse T. Korus, Judith Turk, C. C. Arps, N. V. Arps, Leslie M. Howard

Conservation and Survey Division

We describe unusual stream- reworked glacially transported rocks (erratics) from a locality 50 km east of the limit of all pre- Illinoian (pre- 190 ka) Pleistocene glaciations in the central USA. Almost all these erratics consist of the igneous rock basalt, and of those, the vast majority have at least one fl at, smooth face. Some have two or more such faces that meet at obtuse angles along one or more well- defi ned, straight edges. We attribute these features, as well as laminations, plumose marks, and other features, to columnar jointing in ancient lava fl ows and shallow intrusions ...


The Impact Of Sampling Methodology On Soil Bulk Density Measurement By The Clod Method, Aldi J. Airori, Trinity Baker, Judith Turk 2022 University of Nebraska-Lincoln

The Impact Of Sampling Methodology On Soil Bulk Density Measurement By The Clod Method, Aldi J. Airori, Trinity Baker, Judith Turk

Conservation and Survey Division

The clod method is a widely used and accurate bulk density method. However, its use is limited to sampling from soil pits. This study was conducted to: 1) determine whether clods collected from cores provide similar bulk density measurements to those collected from soil pits and 2) evaluate the impact of various clod bulk density methods on carbon stock calculation. Clods were collected from soil pits, 5.1 cm soil cores, and 8.9 cm soil cores. Three-dimensional laser scanning was used to measure the volume of the soil clods before and after oven-drying and bulk density was calculated as ...


Examining Evolutionary Rate In Xiphosura, Samantha B. Ocon 2022 West Virginia University

Examining Evolutionary Rate In Xiphosura, Samantha B. Ocon

Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports

Horseshoe crabs, a group of aquatic chelicerate arthropods of the class Xiphosura, are strongly linked with the concept of “living fossils” – a term colloquially used to refer to clades that display a consistently low rate of morphological evolution through time. The concept of living fossils has been hotly debated, as it is considered to simplify or obscure millennia of evolutionary change. Recent methodological and computational advances in the paleobiological sciences have allowed for the investigation of these claims. Xiphosura are a model taxon for this type of investigative study because they exhibit a complex evolutionary history, despite their reputation as ...


Digital Commons powered by bepress