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A review of Australian mosasaur occurrences

  • B.P. Kear (a1) (a2), J.A. Long (a3) (a4) and J.E. Martin (a5)

Abstract

Mosasaurs are rare in Australia with fragmentary specimens known only from the Cenomanian-lower Turonian Molecap Greensand (Perth Basin), Campanian - lower Maastrichtian Korojon Calcarenite (Carnarvon Basin), and upper Maastrichtian Miria Formation (Carnarvon Basin), Western Australia. These units were laid down during a near-continuous marine inundation of the western margin of the Australian landmass (which followed separation from India in the Valanginian and genesis of the Indian Ocean) in the Early-Late Cretaceous. The Australian mosasaur record incorporates evidence of derived mosasaurids (mainly plioplatecarpines); however, as yet no specimen can be conclusively diagnosed to genus or species level. The fragmentary nature of the remains provides little basis for direct palaeobiogeographic comparisons. However, correlation with existing data on associated vertebrates, macroinvertebrates and microfossils suggests that the Western Australian mosasaur fauna might have been transitional in nature (particularly following palaeobiogeographic separation of the northern and southern Indian Oceans during the mid-Campanian), potentially sharing elements with both northern Tethyan and austral high-latitude regions.

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Copyright

Corresponding author

* Corresponding author. Email: kear.ben@saugov.sa.gov.au

References

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Keywords

A review of Australian mosasaur occurrences

  • B.P. Kear (a1) (a2), J.A. Long (a3) (a4) and J.E. Martin (a5)

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