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New records and species of molluscs from Tertiary cold-seep carbonates in Washington State, USA

  • Steffen Kiel (a1)


Eighteen gastropod and seven bivalve species are reported from Eocene to Oligocene cold-seep carbonates in Washington State, USA. Four species are new (Niso littlei, Turrinosyrinx hickmanae, Xanthodaphne? campbellae, and Lurifax goederti), and 16 are described in open nomenclature. Previously unknown features of protoconch or prodissoconch morphology and/or shell microstructure are provided for Retiskenea statura (Goedert and Benham), Provanna antiqua Squires, Nuculana? aff. N. grasslei Allen, and Bathymodiolus willapaensis (Squires and Goedert). Modiolus (M.) willapaensis is placed within Bathymodiolus based on the elliptical-triangular shape of its juvenile shell, indicating that the divergence between vent/seep and whale/wood-fall inhabiting bathymodiolines took place at least 40 Ma. The first fossil species of the vent/seep genera Pyropelta (Pyropeltidae), Lurifax (family uncertain), and Catillopecten? (Propeamussidae) are reported. Niso (Eulimidae), Xanthodaphne, Turrinosyrinx, Benthomangelia (Turridae), Ledella (Nuculanidae), Tindaria? (Tindariidae), and Delectopecten (Pectinidae) are reported for the first time from fossil cold-seep assemblages. Larval developmental strategies are inferred from protoconch and prodissoconch morphologies in 14 species, which largely reflect the species' phylogenetic groups, as in modern vent and seep molluscs. The data presented here indicate that the radiation of toxoglossate turrids (Gastropoda) into deep water took place already in the Oligocene, and not in the Miocene as previously thought. Healed shell injuries and presumed naticid drill holes represent the oldest known fossil evidence of predation at cold-seeps.



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New records and species of molluscs from Tertiary cold-seep carbonates in Washington State, USA

  • Steffen Kiel (a1)


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